“It’s that time of the semester.”
This phrase can say so much about how a student is feeling at that given moment. When I ask it to a friend, it’s normally because I can see the worn out look of long nights and stress. When I say it in response to my roommate’s “how are you,” it’s to convey my worn out mental state.
This time of the semester is really easy to feel burn out and an upsurge in stress. Essays due, tests to study for, and extracurricular events are happening left and right.
When this time of the semester comes around I have a few self-care tactics to keep me from burning out or giving up. It’s taken me some time to figure out what works for me, and I am still discovering more.
So with no further ado, here are the ways I keep myself sane (Of course what works for me may not work for you, but it’s important to explore and figure out what does work.)
- Regularly take breaks even if you don’t think you need them. Your mind will get tired over time if you don’t take care of it.
- Schedule your meals and showers. Sometimes you get caught up in your workflow and forget the basic needs. I use google calendar for reminders and scheduling mealtimes.
- Schedule everything and be firm and flexible with your schedule. When making a study schedule during examines, they read more like goals and outlines. However, if it’s a time-sensitive assignment, you have to be firm with yourself in finishing it in your time frame.
- Schedule self-care and sleep times too. Heaven knows how easy it is to forget the bare necessities when knee-deep in assignments and studying.
- Don’t neglect your sleep! You are NOT fully functional during the wee hours of the night with little sleep. You are not going to put out your best work. If you are stuck on something at 10 pm, you will NOT have the answer at 2 am with a sleep-deprived brain. You need sleep for your brain to remember what you study and internalize things. No sleep means no internalization, and all the studying you do goes down the drain.
- Take the time to go outside, take walks, and breathe the fresh air. After hours of being cooked up studying in your room you taking the time to enjoy the fresh air will do your body some good.
- Remember that this stressful time will pass, and it’s not the world’s end. Learning to balance your stress and tasks comes with time and practice- there is always room for growth.
- For some people having an accountability or study buddy helps get things done. This can be a fine line between being distracted the whole time and being productive. The key to it would be to have an acquaintance in the same class so that you can keep focused on the classwork.
- Make plans to do something fun after midterms. This often helps motivate you and gives you something to look forward to after the hustle and bustle.
- Acknowledge all your achievements, both big and small. Whether it’s confidently finishing an exam or remembering to actually eat three meals a day, life can be hard sometimes and you should be proud of how far you’ve come.
I hope this was helpful for you! Stay safe and kill it this semester!