6 Easy Ways To Take Care of Yourself During Finals

6 Easy Ways To Take Care of Yourself During Finals

Taking care of your body will help you ace those finals.
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For most of us college students, there's one thing and one thing only on our minds at this time of year: FINALS. Other normal priorities, like sleep, health and hygiene tend to fall to the wayside in favor of more hours studying in the library.

"I haven't had time to shower or eat anything besides coffee for the past 3 days," we proudly proclaim from behind a stack of notes. However, neglecting your personal health could actually have negative effects on your academic performance. Here are some super quick and easy ways to take care of your body during finals.

1. DIY Face Mask

Say good-bye to stress pimples and dark under-eye circles! Poor diet and lack of sleep can wreak havoc on your skin. DIY face mask's are easy to make and you can wear one while you get ready for bed, or while lay out your supplies for the next day. Try these for acne, these for dark eye circles, and these to reduce puffiness.

2. Drink lots of water.

Water is the body's miracle cure. Among other benefits, water can boost energy, increase brain function, and get rid of headaches. Drinking a full glass of cold water when your alarm goes off in the morning can also help your body wake up faster. For a fun, flavorful twist, try a fruit infuser water bottle.

3. Make a smoothie.

Instead of having a granola bar for breakfast or a greasy late-night snack, whip up a quick smoothie! Instead of reaching for your fifth cup of coffee, give your body something nutritious. Bananas can be a source of protein, apples contain caffeine for an extra kick, and oranges help to clear up your skin and protect your immune system.

4. Sleep in 90-minute increments.

On average, a full REM cycle takes about 90 minutes. When you wake up in the middle of a sleep cycle, it can throw you off for the rest of the day. If you want to wake up feeling energized, rested, and ready to tackle your test, sleep in increments of 90 minutes (i.e. 9 hours, 7.5 hours, 6 hours, or 4.5 hours).

5. Move your study session to the gym.

When you need a change of location, bring your notes to the gym! Physical activity improves your memory and your brainpower. Quiz your friends while walking on the track, or look over your notes from the bike or the treadmill.

6. Take a quick breather.

It's important to give your brain a break. Multiple studies have shown that taking occasional breaks can actually make you more productive. Take a 5 or 10-minute break every hour or two and take some deep breaths, take a lap, or watch funny cat videos.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

Cover Image Credit: wordpress.com

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Goodbye School, Hello Real World

I'm ready for ya!

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It's starting to hit me.

I've been in school, year after year, since kindergarten. Maybe even pre-school!

Now, I'm about to graduate with my bachelors in communication and I couldn't be more proud of myself. I'll say it. I often sugarcoat it or suppress it but d*mn it. I'm going to applaud myself. It was hard work. It took a lot of motivation, determination, (caffeine), and willpower to get to where I am today. I worked my ass off.

That being said, I can't help but think... What is life without due dates? What is life like without scrambling to turn in an assignment that's due at 11:59 PM? What is life like with actual sleep? Sleep? I don't know her.

Like I keep telling my boyfriend and my parents, I don't have it all figured out. At least not right now. But I will, and I'm in no rush to land my dream job right now. If anything, I want to take a year to myself. I want to travel. I want to sleep in if I d*mn well please! I want to read as many books as I want. I want to write till my fingers fall off (OK, maybe not that).

You get the jist.

I'm free. I can do and be whatever I want. And you know what? That's terrifying.

I'm lost. I've followed this structure for so long. Now what?

I don't have all the answers yet. But for now, at least right at this very moment, I'm so thankful to have been able to receive such an amazing education. And to be able to say I'm graduating with my bachelors in communication at 21 is an accomplishment in itself.

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