Staying Healthy through Mid-Semester Madness

23 Oct

Exams, midterms and finals are some of the most stressful points in the life of a student, so here are a few tips to help you get through the madness of the more intense phases of the semester!

1. Coffee

If you find yourself surprised by a deadline or behind on a project right before it’s due, you may be pulling an overnighter. A little bit of coffee, Red Bull, or 5-Hour Energy may be your friend during the daytime, but too much caffeine at night might contribute to a major crash the next day. It could even take place during the exam you’ve been so studiously preparing for. Stick to water, juice, or soft drinks with electrolytes to keep your brain going.

    2. Location, location, location

If you’re staying up late studying, it might be tempting to do so with your laptop in your bed. While comfy, this tells your brain that sleep is your overall goal and it may lead to dozing off and drowsy thinking. Instead, head to the living room or even set up on the floor for more space.

3. Unplug

Whether you’re cramming or just studying, you might want to limit your distractions by only checking texts, Facebook and emails at specific times. You’ll have all the time in the world to catch up after you meet your rapidly-approaching deadlines.

It’s best to stay away from the brightly lit displays of computers and phones for a good hour before bed. The darker your room is, the better quality of sleep you will get.

4. Take breaks

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After a while you might find yourself reading the same line over and over or puzzling over something that made sense a few minutes ago. Take a break! Get up and walk around every 45 minutes or so and eat something when you’re running on empty. Avoid sugary snacks that will make you crash later. It’s also a good idea to use exercise to refresh your mind. Take a walk, spend 15 minutes at the rec, or do some yoga to keep your head clear.

5. Don’t Panic

When you do that last study session before the exam, don’t try to learn new information, just reinforce what you already know. This makes sure that the material you have is solid, and will boost your confidence level, which counts for more than you’d expect.

If you find yourself doing some negative self-talk, stop the negativity in its tracks. Even if you’re pretty sure you’re going to fail, try to keep your chin up and think positively. It will reduce your stress and stress is your worst enemy when it comes to thinking and recalling things clearly.

6. Spoil yourself

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Before and after exams, it’s a good idea to give yourself the VIP treatment every once in a while. Go play with the dog, see a movie, read a book in the park, or go out with friends for a game of frisbee. It takes your mind away for a moment and helps you come back with a fresh perspective.

If you don’t want to spend too much time away from your study materials, surf YouTube for some hilarious videos. Your body can’t be stressed out and doubling over with laughter at the same time, so try trumping your stress with some silly humor.

-Amanda

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