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It’s the End of Your Sanity…I Mean Your Semester

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Almost every college student dreads the end of the semester; between Thanksgiving break and Christmas break, a college student’s life is consumed with the library, canned soup, and caffeine. This lifestyle, lacking somewhat of social breaks and sleeping, can start to wear on the student’s sanity.

It can be hard balancing the essentials—such as eating and sleeping—while that 100 page paper, presentation worth 20% of your grade, and orchestra concert are keeping you awake into the wee hours of the morning. No one wants to consume eight cups of coffee during the day, nor does anyone want to function on 6 hours of sleep in the last 48. Yet, college students seem to set aside their wants for their grades.

How can a college student find time for balance, much less breathing, in the final weeks of the semester? Here are a few tips that will hopefully bring restoration and peace to your final weeks on campus:

– Deep Breaths: Really, take deep breaths throughout your day. When you wake up, before you start an assignment, in the middle of an assignment, at the end of the assignment, and before you go to bed—remember to breathe! Taking deep breaths will remind you to slow down, remind you of where you are and what you’re doing, and ultimately help you to relax, even if its for a moment.

– Pace Yourself: Set time limits per each assignment. I know, that sounds impossible, but really. Think about it for a second: if you have 3 assignments you need to finish in one day, break up tasks within the assignments, and rotate which assignment you’re working on. This way, you’re not consistently working on one assignment (it can grow monotonous and tiresome), and you can work on various tasks at once.

– Incorporate Breaks: Actually, it is possible. Incorporating breaks is quite easy: set a timer on your phone, laptop, watch, or the clock on the wall, and every 5, 10, 15 min get up and take a lap. Walk around the library, your room, the common room, or go to the bathroom. Or, every time you finish writing a page, answer a question, or finish a powerpoint slide, get up and take a break. It’s quite easy to do, and very beneficial. You just have to make sure you’re disciplined enough to sit back down and resume working.

– Set up Rewards: Set up a reward system! Every time you finish an assignment, go hang out with a friend for a few minutes. Every time you read the section of a book or textbook, eat a piece of candy. And every time you finish studying for an exam, celebrate with some sleep. Seriously. Setting up rewards motivates you to finish your assignments.

– Ask for HELP: God has placed people in our lives for a reason! One of those reasons is to ask for help when we need it. So, it makes sense to ask for help, especially when it is school related. Ask a classmate who understands the material to help you if you’re having a hard time understanding something. Ask a friend to pick up some coffee for you, or a milkshake. And finally, and most importantly, shoot your professor an email if you need a clarification on an assignment, or need additional time. It makes too much sense to ask for help.

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