Don't Cram Prioritizing Your Mental Health During Finals Week— You Need To Be Doing That Year-Round

Don't Cram Prioritizing Your Mental Health During Finals Week— You Need To Be Doing That Year-Round

"Pain is temporary, GPA is forever."

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I think it's typical for every college student to stress out for any test but especially midterms and finals week.

If you do bad on a midterm it's easy for you to work hard on your grade and recover in the class but if you do bad on a final exam (which exams that are cumulative are the worst) then your goal is to probably pass with a C in the class.

Remember: C's get degrees.

One of my best and worst qualities about myself is my drive for success. I constantly think about my to-do list and I'm not satisfied until it's done, and I know that I have done my best. For my finals week this semester of my Junior year, I had a lot to do but I chose to focus only on one thing at a time and then start working on the next. For example, I had an 8-minute Spanish presentation due the Friday before finals week, so I worked and prepared for that up until Friday. When that was over my next big goal was my nutrition final on Tuesday morning, so I would prepare all weekend and Monday for that. When nutrition was done, I focused solely on Spanish for the exam Friday.

Focusing on one test at a time helped me a lot because it's hard for me to multi-task and study different subjects but I also didn't take the time I needed in between each test to recover after I had taken it.

Nutrition was a huge struggle for me throughout this entire semester. The professor taught the course like it was pre-med and the only reason that I had signed up for this class was that it said "intro to nutrition" but honestly it was way more advanced than I would have thought. On Monday I studied nutrition from 9 am to 9 pm (including breaks, obviously, but not long ones) but I thought I was going to go insane. I spent most of my time that day just writing specific topics that I needed to look over or important things that I think would be on the test. I prepared so much for this final that I wasn't watching my mental health and I ended up not getting a good nights' sleep for an 8 am final. I constantly thought of topics and I did my best to remember a lot of the information and do the recall method. I drove myself crazy, and I honestly didn't need to.

College finals are hard, but so are any tests during the semester. For some reason, there's a huge stigma on midterms week and finals week because we're told that "This is the worst time of the semester. Your grade is going to plummet if you do terrible. Study in advance."

Finals week is definitely a time for stress and long study hours, but actually, your mental health is important all semester long. For any test, no matter the subject I always seem to overwork myself and do everything in my power to feel prepared enough for the test and then if I get the grade back and I didn't get the grade I wanted, I'm disappointed with myself because I felt like there was something more that I could have done. And yes, I know that sounds crazy but it's true. I'm not alone on this when I say that when college students get a bad grade on something, it upsets us; because it actually does. And if it doesn't upset you then I think you're doing something wrong.

As college students I'm pretty sure that we're all here doing this education thing for a reason, we all have greater purposes in life and we have goals that we want to achieve.

We should not be defined by a test or a number to understand a concept. Our experiences and knowledge should stand alone, and test scores should not matter. Students shouldn't have to risk their sanity for the sake of a GPA but more often times than not, that's exactly what we do. So if you know someone who constantly worries about school or is stressing out, give them a big hug and tell them how great they're doing and how proud you are because they might just need a little reminder.

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To The Teacher Who Was So Much More

Thank you for everything
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I think it's fair to say that most people remember at least one teacher who had a lasting impact on them. I have been incredibly lucky to have several teachers who I will never forget, but one individual takes the cake. So here's to you: thank you for all you have done.

Thank you for teaching me lessons not just in the textbook.

Although you taught a great lecture, class was never just limited to the contents of the course. Debates and somewhat heated conversations would arise between classmates over politics and course material, and you always encouraged open discussion. You embraced the idea of always having an opinion, and always making it be heard, because why waste your voice? You taught me to fight for things I believed in, and to hold my ground in an argument. You taught me to always think of others before doing and speaking. You showed me the power of kindness. Thank you for all the important lessons that may not have been included in the curriculum.

Thank you for believing in me.

Especially in my senior year, you believed in me when other teachers didn't. You showed me just what I could accomplish with a positive and strong attitude. Your unwavering support kept me going, especially when I melted into a puddle of tears weekly in your office. You listened to my stupid complaints, understood my overwhelming stress-induced breakdowns, and told me it was going to be okay. Thank you for always being there for me.

Thank you for inspiring me.

You are the epitome of a role model. Not only are you intelligent and respected, but you have a heart of gold and emit beautiful light where ever you go. You showed me that service to others should not be looked at as a chore, but something to enjoy and find yourself in. And I have found myself in giving back to people, thanks to your spark. Thank you for showing me, and so many students, just how incredible one person can be.

Thank you for changing my life.

Without you, I truly would not be where I am today. As cliche as it sounds, you had such a remarkable impact on me and my outlook on life. Just about a year has passed since my graduation, and I'm grateful to still keep in touch. I hope you understand the impact you have made on me, and on so many other students. You are amazing, and I thank you for all you have done.

Cover Image Credit: Amy Aroune

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Five Tips to Get on Top of Your 2019: Tech Editions

Yeah, there's an app for that.

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Technology is the course of the future, why not use it to get on top of your new year? Make 2019 the year you stop sleeping on these great productivity apps and get grinding! Best part, all the apps I've included here are free.

Google Calendar.

Look at that beauty.

I LOVE Google Calendar! Not only is it a great tool to map out your week, it comes with cool features. You can color code tasks and events, get text reminders and so much more. You can even sync your calendar with other people's (this is very helpful for roommates or study buddies).

Google Doc File Folders

Crying.

Sick of that long list of documents in your Google Docs? You can make file folders to organize all of your docs!

Momentum Chrome Extension

This is by far my favorite productivity app. It's a Chrome extension that acts as a home page whenever you open a new window or tab. It comes complete with the weather, a motivational quote and a to-do list! The best feature is their "main focus for the day". It keeps you grounded for sure- especially when it pops up with every tab and forces you to think about all you need to accomplish.

Wunderlist

This is a to-do list on steroids- definitely worth checking out!

Todist

A to-do list app for your phone! I love this just to organize what my top priorities are.

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