by Thea Voutiritsas
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Okay, maybe not. High stakes and heavy books can be hard to handle, but don’t let finals week get you down! We’ve compiled a quick list of ways to help keep your stress level under control, so you can end your semester with a bang, not a fizzle… or a mental breakdown.
- Exercise – Short exercise breaks can relieve stress, help you socialize, and burn off extra sugar you may be consuming. It’ll also help you focus, and release endorphins to improve your mood. It can be hard to make time for it when you’re busy studying, but I like to listen to audiobooks of what I’m studying, or you can rest a book on a bike or a treadmill. If you’re really short on time, even a walk around the block can help clear your head.
- Breathe– That should be obvious, but it’s so easy we often forget to do it at all. When you’re feeling especially overwhelmed, just take a deep breath until you can’t fill your lungs anymore, then exhale with gusto! Make a noise! Just let it out. It seems silly, but sometimes just 4-5 seconds to slow the thoughts running through your head can help. Maybe just don’t do this during a test.
- Sleep – It’s easier said than done. Studying before bed can help with retention, but staying up all night studying only dulls your short-term memory. You’re better off studying earlier and getting a good night’s rest.
- Hydrate – It’s tempting to stick with caffeine when you’re in a rush and short on sleep, but it dehydrates you in the long run. Match what you’re drinking in coffee with water. You may need a lot of bathroom breaks, but your mind will be clearer, and your body will thank you.
- Eat nutritious meals and snacks – Don’t just settle for the quickest bite to eat when you’re in a hurry. Stick with healthy snacks with natural sugars to keep your mind clear and your blood sugar even. The last thing you need is a major crash. Plus, Monday, May 8 through Friday, May 12, the Women’s Center will be providing free snacks! You can find our baskets at the Women’s Center in 105 Haag Hall, the 3rd Atrium in Flarsheim Hall, 1st floor lounge of Block Heritage Hall, and the 2nd Floor of the Health Sciences Library on Hospital Hill!