We’re in the homestretch folks! You’ve made it through most of the semester! As finals week approaches, remember to take care of yourself.
It’s easy during to skip out on self-care such as getting enough sleep each night and skipping meals to give you the most amount of time possible to study for exams and finish final projects. It’s essential to take care of yourself while preparing for finals not only to perform well on your exams and end the semester strong–but too also make sure you don’t wear down your immune system before returning home.
The Truth About All-Nighters
Most students are guilty of this dangerous, caffeine induced cycle. Studies have shown how impactful losing even a couple hours of sleep can be on your working memory and overall brain efficiency so make sure you’re planning a balanced study and sleep cycle.
Stick to a consistent sleep schedule to feel well-rested. It is recommended you sleep 7-8 hours a night; however: It’s easy to stay up late studying for exams and finishing up assignments. Your body and brain need adequate sleep to help you perform your best. Plus getting enough sleep keeps your immune system strong.
The best way to study is over multiple days, however it can be hard to prepare for multiple exams. If you’re anything like me and tend to procrastinate, consider studying before bed, going to sleep at your regular time, and waking up an hour or thirty minutes early to finish studying.
Food for Thought
It’s no lie that what you eat throughout the day affects how you feel. So, while preparing for finals, make sure to eat wholesome and nutritious food to keep your brain alert and focused.
Fish is high in omega-3s for brain function and protein.
Fruit is rich in vitamins and contains healthy natural sugars.
In moderation, caffeine can help give you an extra boost.
Dark leafy greens are filled with vitamin K, B-6 and B-12, adding greens can improve memory.
Nuts are healthy fats will keep you full and energized.
Sometimes it’s difficult to sit down with a textbook and retain information, but there are ways to make it easier:
- Don’t wait until the last minute. This is the source of all-nighters. Try to space out your study time 2 weeks before an exam.
- Study with friends. You can quiz each other, ask questions or explain ideas while still having fun!
- Find a quiet space. In order to focus, find an area where you’ll have few distractions. Putting your phone in a different room may be ideal.
- Take study breaks. After a while, it’s a good idea to walk around or eat a healthy snack.
- Draw it out. It can be very beneficial to see concepts in new ways, either through drawings, graphs or charts.
- Make it a routine. Start a goal and dedicate a specific amount of time in your day to study.
During exams, don’t be overly critical of yourself. You are not defined by one week during the semester. In most classes, finals only make up a fraction of your overall semester course grade. If you fumble, you already have a semester worth of grades to fall back on.
Most importantly be kind to yourself and remember the end of the semester is in sight.