Finals Are Stressful, But Here Are 4 Ways To Get It Together

Finals Are Stressful, But Here Are 4 Ways To Get It Together

Making studying for finals a little less painful.

As finals creep around the corner, it is imperative to have a system that works for you to study.

If you are anything like me, cramming in the library for hours at a time is not a practical form of remembering information in the long-term. The following tactics have given me a studying system that allows me to retain the information I need while still remaining sane.

1. Positive Reinforcement

Often if I need to make 50+ flashcards for one of my finals, I have to give myself some type of incentive. An example to this might be, "every 10 flashcards I get done, I can eat two of my sour patch watermelon candies." I know it sounds silly, but rewarding yourself for small achievements can keep you motivated to get your work done and breaking tasks into small increments can make your workload seem less overwhelming.

2. Make and Schedule

Instead of attempting the nearly impossible task of remembering all of the information learned in a course during one sitting. Create a schedule in which you can review one or a few chapters at a time. You will be able to focus more of your attention on the specific material and will retain the material for much longer. Before your test, look over the course as a whole and gather the big pictures of the class.

3. Teach the course.

If you find a friend or study buddy that you can review with, teaching another person the material is an effective means of wrapping your head around the concepts. As you are teaching someone else, you are actually studying yourself and retaining knowledge.

4. Exercise before studying.

I have found that when I run or take a yoga class before I begin studying, my mind is free of clutter and I am able to be more mindful while working without outside thoughts distracting me.

These 4 methods are most effective for me while studying for large exams, though they may not work for everyone. Coming up with a personal studying strategy before facing the work you need to do ahead can be a game changer for your grades on your finals. Good luck to all on finals!

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To The Teacher Who Was So Much More

Thank you for everything

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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Back to school ads have started and i'm here for it

Pencils, pens, and markers, oh my!


Now before anyone gets their panties in a twist, I'm not wishing summer away. I love the sun and the relaxation as much as the next person, but I am SO excited for back to school shopping.

Can you think of anything more satisfying than opening a new, pretty planner and filling in the lines with your schedule and to-do lists? Actually, I can- crossing those things off your to-do list. And you know the feeling when you flip to the first page of a notebook and try out every color of your brand new pens and/or markers? No? Yeah, okay, these might just be me but those are just a couple reasons I love back to school shopping.

Take a quick stroll through Target or Walmart and you can see school supplies everywhere you turn. I remember picking out different colored folders and notebooks for each class when I was a kid and everything corresponded. If I couldn't find a folder to match my notebook then you had better believe I changed colors to make everything match.

Back to school shopping is the perfect time to get your life organized before your normal switches up again. Going from lazy days to 3, 4, even 5 classes a day starting at 8 am is a huge change. When I have new school supplies, room decorations, clothes, etc. it makes that transition so much easier. I'll be a sophomore in college and yes, I still struggle with that transition.

Back to school shopping reminds me that it is possible for me to have some control and to have my life together. It's nice to start off the new semester with everything nice and clean and organized before the craziness takes over. So, call me crazy, but I'm here for back to school ads because I am here for the calm before the storm.

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