How To Get Into The Right Mentality For Finals Week

Here it is. The home stretch of fall quarter. To freshmen: congratulations - you finished your first quarter of college! No matter what year you are, you still have finals to go through, with everyone else. It is important to keep the right mentality in order to have maximum efficiency while studying and being alert during the tests.

These exams are important. Keep up any motivation you have left or find a new source of it. Personally, I find my motivation by thinking of the future. I would rather work hard right now and shed any stress-induced tears than log into my grade book over the winter break and see that I did poorly. A majority of the time there is a direct correlation between working hard and getting the results you want. Just know that the pain of studying right now, the long nights in the library and any anxiety you may experience is temporary. We are days away from getting the break we all need. Another thing that helps me is that I work well with other people. I get my motivation from others. Seeing my friends diligently studying and feeling secure in their knowledge before a final makes me want to work just as hard, if not more. I have a group of friends that I study with quietly and we do a good job of not distracting each other. Maybe find a group like that - who knows, maybe it will help you.

Most importantly, you have to take care of you. Do not let the stress and grades hurt your mental health. True, school is very important but you are more important. Work hard and you will get the grades, but do not inflict pain or suffering on yourself. Be kind to your mind and take breaks during studying. Have a nice dinner with friends at a dining hall, sleep in when you have back-to-back studying days and rely on the resources around you. In order to be productive while studying, you need to make sure that you are sleeping the proper amount, having a lot of water and eating properly. It's okay to go off any diet you may be fixated on. I was always told to have some sweets while studying because it keeps you alert and can help you concentrate. Also, take time out of your day to do some physical activity. Exercising releases stress and endorphins so it will make you feel more relaxed and even happier. For me, it is the perfect way to start a long day of studying. It makes me feel like I accomplished something and encourages me to keep up the productive streak.

Having the right mentality also means studying properly. Do not overwork yourself and do not study material that will not be helpful. Make a to-do list and physically check off anything you do. It is known that people feel more productive and motivated when their hands physically cross off or check off something they finished. Organize what you are going to study and how you will study it rather than just simply jumping into the studying. Also, if you are the type of person to be easily distracted, it is okay to isolate yourself and prioritize your studies first. Some people pick up on material quicker than others, some people do great in the class and some do not. Do not compare yourself with others though, just focus on yourself and good luck!