No matter how much you prepare, there’s always that feeling of doom hanging over your head as finals week nears. There are notes to go over and chapters to reread (or read for the first time because you never read them when you were supposed to), not to mention bags to pack to head home for the holidays!
I’m no expert in study strategies, but I can provide you with a ton of little extras to help you survive the week. They may not be able to help you speed-read or retain formulas, but they will definitely make your finals week more enjoyable.
**Tips and Tricks**
1. Take breaks. Your brain doesn’t work as well on overdrive. After an hour or so, give yourself a break. Chat with a friend about something other than finals or take a lap around the library. When you return, you’ll feel much more refreshed and ready to take on those notes.
2. Treat yourself. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with a little bit of a sugar rush during finals week. I tried these Chocolate Candy Cane Cookies from Foodess this year and they were fantastic. These Glazed Meyer Lemon Almond Cookies look to-die-for as well. Share with friends, and you’ll get major points. Bogged down from too much sugar? Treat yourself to a workout or a power healthful snack like these Banana Ghosts.
3. Stay positive. According to Cracked, getting into a “My Finals Week is worse than your Finals Week” battle is one of the 7 Dumbest Things College Students do When Cramming for Exams. Surround yourself with positive people, even if it’s killing you not to tell your neighbor that your Quantum Physics final might be a teensy bit harder than her Basket Weaving project.
4. Set an environment. Creamy Vanilla candle, N’Sync blaring in the background, and a fuzzy pair of slippers should do it. A comfortable studier is a happy studier.
5. Keep the end goal in sight. While just the goal of acing those exams should be enough to motivate you, sometimes it just isn’t. If that’s the case, plan a little something extra to get you through the week. Whether it’s a celebratory dinner, a Secret Santa gift exchange, or an extravagant party like the keg my friends and I are looking forward to tomorrow, you deserve something for all your hard work!
Good luck on finals, SKC readers. We’re cheering for ya!
Shannon Kelley is a graduate student at Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri. She would like to dedicate this post to her roommates who were kind enough to pose for the picture for this post and who keep her from melting down on a daily basis, not just during finals.