Stress

Time to Relax: Dead Week

photo via clog.dailycal.org

Finals are almost here and the last thing anyone wants to do is study (ew). The sound of studying just makes you want to curl up into a ball or go hide. The good news is campuses have a few ways to escape the studying and take a break. The activities are all across campus and they start during the most bittersweet week of the year, DEAD WEEK. No tests, no homework, just studying (ew again). Start looking around for these breaks and take note of them; you might just want to check them out. A few things that could be happening around your campus:

  • PAWS for stress relief- with this you can take a break from studying and go play with service puppies! I know I’d want to spend an afternoon meeting new friends.
  • A lot of places around campus might have a “chill” day or a “kick-back” day where you can just take the afternoon off and go eat free food, play games and possibly when door prizes! Look at the library, alumni groups, activities boards or any kind of campus group and I’m sure you will find something! And most of the time there is one everyday a week, so just make you rounds!
  • Often campuses offer Massage on the go (MOTG) where you can enjoy a free 5 minute massage to take the stress off. I mean, who wouldn’t want that?
  • Another thing to look out for is a student-teacher-student reception. This is an exhibition of a lot of different artwork done by the students on campus. Take a break from the stress and go check it out. Plus, there is almost always free food and I know that’s what everyone wants.

Start looking around your campus and see what you can do procrastinate from studying for finals! There are a lot of fun things to do, if you just find the right ones. Go out and get your freebies so you can stop stressing about finals. Good luck!

This is a guest post from our Internet Marketing Intern Haeli. Many thanks to her! 

Tips for reducing stress during finals week

 

I don’t know how hectic your school schedule is, but it’s getting close to finals week for me. Finals are a time of the year when a student will either sink or swim. Over the past 3 years, I have done both. However, in that time I’ve learned ways to get through finals week without jamming a power drill in my forehead. And because you’re such a beautiful audience, I will share the ages old secrets with you all. Just hide your power drill and follow these guidelines, and you should be golden.

1. Create a schedule for studying.

Do this as soon as you figure out when your finals will be. It will save you from the trap of having 3 finals and one day to study for all of them. Some teachers will let you reschedule finals if you have this many, but you should always stay on top of this yourself. Create a schedule of the entire week, giving your most important finals priority over ones that may be easier or not matter quite as much.

2. Are your friends done with finals? Are they partying? Forget about them!

Most of us have been in the position where we have 1 or 2 more finals to go, and some (or all) of our friends are done with theirs. Nobody wants to be stuck in the library all night while their friends are at the bar partying harder than David Hasselhoff. You have to get in the zone, find a quiet place to study, and do work. There is plenty of time to party on the weekends.

3. Make sure to get a decent amount of sleep.

This is hard for me, being one of those people who is attempting to go to sleep at 3am everyday. What I do is try to stay at the library until 30 minutes before I plan to go to bed. When it’s time to sleep, don’t watch TV, play on the Internet (unless you’re ordering from eCampus.com’s NEW college clothing store), or play video games. You want everything you just learned to remain fresh in your brain.

4. Know your best strategies.

We all have our own ways of studying. Do what works for you. What I do is create a study guide, hand-write it all, study note cards, then try to write everything I know off the top of my head. After that it’s rinse and repeat until I feel confident (or I have to leave the library because some freshman is blabbering on about someone’s Facebook status for an hour).

5. Study groups – split up the work, and get to work.

Try this whenever possible. Mention that you’re trying to organize a study group a day or two before your final. Break down the study guide into sections and have everybody do a section. This will complete the study guide in no time. Then you can move on to your own strategies, with or without the group.

6. Find a song that helps you deal with the stress.

Finals week are no doubt the most stressful part of college. Don’t let the stress take control. Find a song that will calm you down or one that reminds you of home. I like Bob Marley- Everything is gonna be alright. It takes me to my happy place. Between that and the thought of being home for the holidays, my stress almost seems worth it.

7. Have a reward waiting for you at home.

I like to save one of my favorite beers for the moment I finish studying. It helps me knowing that I have something to look forward to after the 8-hour study sessions. Be sure to buy it before you start studying. Why? Last night I was at the library from 8 pm to 2:30am. It just so happens that bars close and alcohol sales stop at 2:30 here.

8. Keep some candy or fruit snacks in your backpack.

This is a good way to momentarily take your mind off of things when feeling restless. When you start to feel the stress or fatigue, eat some sour gummy worms. 60 seconds later you will realize that you need to get back to reality, but for those 60 seconds, your brain is thinking happy thoughts.

Final note: I hope that these tips help you make solid studying decisions. Give it your best and let your brain do the rest. When the smoke clears, you will survive finals week.

Alabaster

I’m reading Living Religions

 

Don’t Let Stress Get to You at the End of the Semester

 

With a few months of college classes under your belt, everyone has most like had at least one exam down from each class. Freshmen have now figured out that college courses are not exactly as easy as high school classes. For those people who thought high school was a breeze and flew by with great grades and not much studying, college is a huge wake up call. That is how I felt coming into my freshman year and I became very overwhelmed. After the last few years, I have learned some great study tips that make college feel less difficult and more manageable.

Organize Your Work

    Try to keep your papers, notes, and exams all divided between your different classes and all in one place. This makes referring back to notes while studying much easier!

Meet People in Every Class

    Studying alone is not always the easiest or most exciting way to remember information for classes. It is nice to have a discussion group to talk through the information with, and it has been shown to help memorize much easier. Also, everyone has those days that they want to have a lazy day and skip a class and knowing people makes it easy to get the notes you missed.

Talk to Professors

    Every professor loves when students stop by their office hours. When they have 2 hour office hour study blocks to meet with people and no one shows up, it is pretty boring. Even if you have just one question don’t hesitate to go. This will also get your name in their mind so they want to help you out.

Listen to Light Music

    As long as it is not distracting, it never hurts to listen to some relaxing music while just copying note cards or other studying that doesn’t involve a lot of ready.

Eat, and Drink Some Coffee

    Make sure that when having a long studying night that you are keeping nourished. Brain food is very necessary and if you don’t eat enough you are more likely to become tired. If you need an extra boost, have a cup of coffee.

Take Study Breaks

    Studies have shown that if you take a break every 45 minutes, you retain information better and do not become bored and tired. Bring a magazine or take a walk around to stretch your legs.

Stay Calm

    It never helps to get all worked up about a big paper or exam. By staying calm and positive, work will get done much quicker and the information you are trying to learn won’t be throw into your worried, stressed brain.

Korgan

I’m reading Criminal Justice

Tips to Beat Exam Stress

As the end of September is beginning to approach and students are noticing the calendar pages flipping, the first, or second, maybe even third exam might be lurking on the horizon. For upper level college students, many have gotten the hang of exam taking. For the college freshman, here are a few tips to help avoid stress during exam weeks and successfully study for exams.
 

Tip #1:Get organized
The first step to exam taking is knowing when the exam will be. Get a planner or calendar that allows you to see and take note of exams in the week and upcoming weeks. Having a planner can also help one to set specific study times, classes, tutoring, etc. The planner/calendar will help you organize your time and prepare for the exam.

Tip #2:Find a quiet place to study
For many freshman, the first year of college means dorm life. Dorm life means that there are people around 24/7 and not everyone in the dorm will be running on the same schedule. Finding a quiet, secluded, space to study will allow one to focus more. A good place to look for is a quiet nook in the library or quiet area of a classroom building. Sometimes studying with friends might not be the best way to study. Go to a place where your friends might not find you, and bother you.

Tip #3:Turn your cell phone/iPod/TV/computer off
Believe it or not, Facebook is NOT a study tool. Tweeting to your friends about review problems and answers isn’t quite effective either. TURN IT OFF. Turning off your cell phone/ipod/TV/computer allows for less distractions. Most of the time, all you need is your book, a highlighter, notebook, and a good cup of coffee. If you worry that people will be trying to get a hold of you, update your Facebook status telling your friends you are studying and you will be unavailable for a trip to the cafe, but maybe after the exam is over.

Tip #4:Learn to say NO
Opportunities are perpetually lurking on a college campus. In a dorm full of hundred of kids, getting an invite to hang out isn’t usually hard to find. The hardest thing to say to a friend might be, “No”. If you have an exam in the morning and you know that you do not understand the information being tested over like the back of your hand, declining an invitation to a late-night trip to Wal-Mart would be in your best interest. No is a word in our vocabulary, DON’T BE AFRAID TO USE IT. There will always be another opportunity to play video games. In college, you only get one opportunity to take a test. Learn how to say no at the right time.

Tip #5:Study more than 1 day in advance
Some people learn better when they “cram” for exams. Rarely does a student not benefit from studying a couple of days in advance. Allow yourself some time in your schedule to study and review your notes for the exam. Reading or rereading the assigned reading assignments might be boring, but beneficial. The professors assign the readings for a reason. Organize your notes, retype them, review them. By giving yourself a few days to soak the information in, the day before the exam might not be so hectic.

Tip #6:Get sleep
Sleep is essential, especially when it comes to exam week. Getting the proper sleep the night before the exam is especially important, but throughout the week as well. If you know that you are already exhausted in a regular day after getting only 7 hours asleep, adding more studying into the equation can take even more energy out of you. When you have enough energy, it is easier to focus on what you are studying. What college student doesn’t love getting a couple of extra hours of sleep anyways??

Tip #7:Take study breaks
We are not robots, so sitting for hours looking at pages and pages of readings and notes is not exciting. By allowing yourself to take short and frequent study breaks, information will be retained more than if a student were to study for hours straight through the night. Study for an hour, take a short 10 minute break (check your Facebook if you must, send a tweet, update your location on foursquare), but get right back to serious study mode. By giving your brain a break, you can remember more of what you have learned.

Tip #8:Add free-time to your schedule
College is a serious place. It can make you or break you. College can introduce you to your best friends, show you places you want to go, and help you find out who you want to be. The purpose of college is not solely to immerse yourself in textbooks and notebooks. There are tons of opportunities, so get out there and take one!! You can’t take life too seriously, have fun, laugh often, and put yourself around friends you enjoy. Leave some space in your planner for some free-time for yourself or to spend time with friends. You will be less stressed and have a smile on your face.

Do you have any de-stressing tips for fellow college students? If so, we want to hear them!
Kat VonD
I am reading Mathematical Applications