6 TEDTalks For Exam Season

6 TEDTalks For Exam Season

Great Thinkers On How To Be More Productive And Stress Free

As we get closer to the end of the semester, I cannot help but notice how time flies as paper deadlines and exam dates seem to grow closer and closer. If you’re like me, you probably have been losing motivation as you focus on surviving (and maybe thriving) in the present and not on the future. For me, this is a slippery slope into stress and procrastination. Balancing the lack of motivation and the desire for my work to be good can be difficult and cause stress.

So here are some TedTalks for how to fight off procrastination and stress so you can be more productive:

1. Inside The Mind Of A Master Procrastinator (Tim Urban)

According to Urban, we all have a “Panic Monster” that scares us into action and explains why procrastinators do so well under pressure. However, no deadlines means no Panic Monster scaring them into action and is why many chronic procrastinators can be unhappy: “The frustration is not that they couldn’t achieve their dreams; it’s that they weren’t even able to start chasing them.” So we need to take a long, hard look at the “Life Calendar” and create our own deadlines to motivate us into action.

2. The Surprising Habits Of Original Thinkers (Adam Grant)

As a teacher, Grant has found that moderate procrastinators are more creative than the chronic procrastinators and “precrastinators”, or those who rush in and do everything early. For Grant, this is because “procrastination gives you time to consider divergent ideas, to think in nonlinear ways, to make unexpected leaps.”

3.Why Work Doesn’t Happen At Work (Jason Fried)

Just like you don’t sleep well if interrupted, Fried claims that being productive requires a block of uninterrupted time or you risk having to go back a few phases and start again. To increase your productivity, he suggests putting away distracting things like your phone and email “and then you can be interrupted on your own schedule, at your own time, when you’re available, when you’re ready to go again.” He also suggests going for an entire afternoon without talking to anyone so you can work uninterrupted.

4. How To Succeed? Get More Sleep (Arianna Huffington)

“I’m here to tell you that the way to a more productive, more inspired, more joyful life is getting enough sleep.” Since her experience of fainting from exhaustion, Huffington has become a big supporter of sleep. She wants to end the ‘sleep deprivation one-upmanship’ or bragging about how little sleep you got.

5. How To Make Stress Your Friend (Kelly McGonigal)

“When you change your mind about stress, you can change your body’s response to stress.” For McGonigal, the key is changing your mindset from stress as harmful to your body’s response to stress as helping you rise to the challenge.

6. How To Stay Calm When You Know You’ll Be Stressed (Daniel Levitin)

When we get stressed, our brain is flooded with cortisol that can cloud our thinking. So if you know that you will be stressed, Levitin suggests that “you look ahead and you try to figure out all the things that could go wrong, and then you try to figure out what you can do to prevent those things from happening, or to minimize the damage.” As students, consider doing things like saving your papers in multiple places and printing out extra copies. As you get ready for exams, consider setting multiple extra alarms in case you miss your normal one so you don’t sleep through your exam!

Hopefully these TEDTalks will have motivated you to finish off the semester strong and to not procrastinate too much! Just remember that you can do it!

Cover Image Credit: emergingedtech.com

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10 Things Someone Who Grew Up In A Private School Knows

The 10 things that every private school-goer knows all too well.


1. Uniforms

Plaid. The one thing that every private school-goer knows all too well. It was made into jumpers, skirts, shorts, scouts, hair ties, basically anything you could imagine, the school plaid was made into. You had many different options on what to wear on a normal day, but you always dreaded dress uniform day because of skirts and ballet flats. But it made waking up late for school a whole lot easier.

2. New people were a big deal

New people weren't a big thing. Maybe one or two a year to a grade, but after freshman year no one new really showed up, making the new kid a big deal.

3. You've been to school with most of your class since Kindergarten

Most of your graduating class has been together since Kindergarten, maybe even preschool, if your school has it. They've become part of your family, and you can honestly say you've grown up with your best friends.

4. You've had the same teachers over and over

Having the same teacher two or three years in a row isn't a real surprise. They know what you are capable of and push you to do your best.

5. Everyone knows everybody. Especially everyone's business.

Your graduating class doesn't exceed 150. You know everyone in your grade and most likely everyone in the high school. Because of this, gossip spreads like wildfire. So everyone knows what's going on 10 minutes after it happens.

6. Your hair color was a big deal

If it's not a natural hair color, then forget about it. No dyeing your hair hot pink or blue or you could expect a phone call to your parents saying you have to get rid of it ASAP.

7. Your school isn't like "Gossip Girl"

There is no eating off campus for lunch or casually using your cell phone in class. Teachers are more strict and you can't skip class or just walk right off of campus.

8. Sports are a big deal

Your school is the best of the best at most sports. The teams normally go to the state championships. The rest of the school that doesn't play sports attends the games to cheer on the teams.

9. Boys had to be clean-shaven, and hair had to be cut

If you came to school and your hair was not cut or your beard was not shaved, you were written up and made to go in the bathroom and shave or have the head of discipline cut your hair. Basically, if you know you're getting written up for hair, it's best just to check out and go get a hair cut.

10. Free dress days were like a fashion show

Wearing a school uniform every day can really drive you mad. That free dress day once a month is what you lived for. It was basically a fashion show for everyone, except for those upperclassmen who were over everything and just wore sweat pants.

Cover Image Credit: Authors Photos

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Academics and Creativity Conflicts

Academics is definitely something important for students, but it seems that creativity is pushed aside too often.


As students, we are heavily focused on academics. Some of us may also be heavily focused on athletics. Anything that helps or is integrated into our academic careers has a way of controlling how we live our daily life. We go to class, we study and do homework, we attend activities/work, and then we most likely have little time to relax.

One thing that seems to lack in the academic world is creativity. Many students may say "Well, I'm not creative." Why have students subjected themselves to being uncreative individuals? How does someone define "creativity" as the verbatim definition across the world? Creativity can be used widely if we are aware of how it can be done.

  1. In the classroom, students can find creative ways to approach a debate, a different way of understanding a topic, changing the argument and allowing different perspectives and voices to be heard, and so much more.
  2. Students can find different ways of changing the issues our communities may face such as homelessness, segregated communities, etc.
  3. Organizations can be created to fill in the gaps our communities may have (including in a university).
  4. Students can remain to do creative activities such as crafts, writing, art, etc. This can be done within different organizations or in the comfort of the student's home.
  5. There are different platforms that encourage creativity like photoshop, video editing software, websites like Wattpad to create and share your own stories, and more.

We cannot let academics take over every moment of our lives. It can easily result in a point where we have no motivation to do anything at all because we are in a constant routine that can drain us. We are more than school, although it is still very important. If we shall succeed, we have to embrace the things we love to do and not forget about who we are.

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