It started off as a minor cough and a little bit of sniffling here and there. It's not THAT cold, you don't need a jacket, you're only running out to the car and back. Before you know it, you have that feeling in your throat as if there is something there that is hard to cough out. You wake up in the morning with a heavy head, and your throat hurts when you take a drink. You feel a sneeze coming on, and when you get back up for breath, you realize...YOU'RE SICK.

And not only that but... FINALS ARE IN A WEEK.

You curse quietly. There go your grades and your social life for the rest of the December. But fear not! Here are some tips that might actually help you crawl out of finals week with good grades, and you might even get rid of your cold before that much-needed winter break trip you are taking!

1. Take a day off

If you can, take a day off. For several people, that task might be an impossible one. With major projects and deadlines on the horizon, this is not going to be your first option. That being said, depending on your sickness, you might not have that much of a choice. Getting a day in at home, letting your body relax and slump around in comfortable clothing, sleeping a little extra (in addition to minor naps throughout the day), and being able to devour anything you want might just be what your body needs.

2. Create a Good Study Environment

Like my mother always says, a clean room is a clean mind! You will find that having an unmade bed, things you don't need all over the floor, a sink full of dishes and mildly overthrowing trash will not make your life any easier. Start by cleaning up. Even if it is slowly. Your body needs a clean environment to get clean itself. With an organized room and an organized desk, you will realize how much you can actually accomplish. Everything will be in order, and work itself won't seem as tasking.

3. Reload on your Cold Cures

Forget about those wings you're craving and gulp down six bowls of soup a day. My personal home recipe is adding a bunch of red peppers to the soup to make it very hot. Having spicy food will help your throat and your nostrils. You can breathe again, yay! For about ten minutes though... It won't cure you instantly. Drink orange juice, but don't forget about that hot tea! Black tea with lemon and sugar can do wonders. Not only is it warm and soothing for your throat, but the lemon will give a huge boost of vitamin C for your body. Pick up some over the counter medicine, such as NyQuil, which will help you sleep better at night and (hopefully) function better the next morning. Be careful on those drowsy drugs though, you don't want to be passing out in Computer Science 221 while the professor is lecturing you about the topics of the final exam.

While you're doing the medicine pumping, get in some of those easy study sheets for the topics you already pretty much know but would like to review. Start working on those papers that are due next week, so you don't have to stress out or worry about the papers the day before they are due. Working in short bursts will also assist in making sure that you have the energy to continue working, instead of working all day non-stop, and not getting much done.

4. Isolate Yourself from People

Yeeeeaaaah I know that is the last thing you want to do. Feel free to leisurely text your friends, but don't be surrounded by packs of people in the most crowded place on campus. Not only will it exhaust you more, but it will additionally divert your attention, and your focus on your work won't be the best. Furthermore, get away from any drama. Your friend won't stop being your friend if you tell them that you are sick and can't fix their relationship right now.

5. Call Your Family

Call your mother. Whine about how sick you are. Get it out of your system. Sometimes it feels so good to complain.

6. Don't get down on yourself.

You're sick, and it sucks, although it's something you have to push through. You have to make sure you keep motivating yourself, through each sneeze and each cough. Tell yourself you can do it. Tell yourself you will take a quick nap and then get up and study for a while. Tell yourself that you are strong and that not only will you get better, but you will also get a good grade on that exam!

"I know that in life there will be sickness, devastation, disappointments, heartache - it's a given. What's not a given is the way you choose to get through it all. If you look hard enough, you can always find the bright side."