The month of March can cause a lull in your spring semester hustle. You're planning your spring break trip, the end of the semester is on the horizon, and the thought of summer being so close is having you dream of no homework and sleeping in. On top of all that, it's midterm season.
Staying on top of things and prioritizing your to-do list can be difficult when you're being pulled a million different directions. Here are five ways to stay sane and tackle midterm season at the same time.
Get Organized and Plan Ahead
Aside from your exam study guides, your planner is your midterm survival guide. Ever since I started using one five years ago, I haven't been able to live without one since! My planner contains all my important test dates, assignment due dates, club meetings, appointments, work hours, and important memos and reminders. I like to color code everything with highlighters, so when I glance at my week, I know exactly what I need to do.
Midterm season takes a little timing and prioritizing. Planning out your week will make your goals clear, help you check off your to-do list one item after another, and let you know when you have the free time to kick back and relax.
Having an organized desk and study area is essential to getting things done. Nothing's worse than having a cluttered desk and no space to set down your notebook and laptop. I found that even going through the act of cleaning and organizing my study space helps to clear my mind and motivate me to sit down and start checking things off my to-do list.
It's All About Motivation
I think that we can all agree that the more you're forced to do something, the more you don't want to do it. This applies to studying. We all want an A and a 4.0 GPA, but once learning becomes a chore and we're forced to retain all this information – only to spit it back out on the exams – we stop caring about learning the information we were once excited about.
College definitely has its ups and downs, it's more challenging than easy, and the overwhelming course work can have you wondering why you decided to go to school for four more years. That doesn't mean you can't make the most of the time you have left!
I decided to pursue college because I wanted to continue learning, I wanted to give myself the brightest future in my career field as possible, and I'm a sucker for highlighters and new school supplies. In addition to having fun and making new memories, it's helpful to remind yourself of the positives and the reasons you're here.
It's all about staying motivated, whether you motivate yourself, your #GirlSquad is your hype team, or you never miss a FaceTime call with your family and pets back home. Figuring out what you need to do, finding what works for you, and working at your own pace is how you really get things done!
Don't Forget to Recharge
Staying motivated and always going is a for-sure way to get things done, but don't forget to recharge. All that energy has to come from somewhere!
Whether you like to hit the gym, hang out with friends, or have me-time, it's important to find the perfect balance between go-go-go and relaxing. It can be as easy as taking a day off from homework and studying, or claiming the weekends as your time.
Take advantage of what your university may have to offer. Whether it's widely advertised or you have to do a little bit of research, universities tend to put a lot of thought into student life when it comes it testing season, usually free of charge. Free counseling sessions, therapy dogs, and group fitness classes are the most popular stress-relieving methods at my university. Talking to professionals about managing stress and test anxiety, petting dogs on my way to class, and taking that yoga class I've always wanted to try never fails to lift the rain cloud that seems to follow people around during midterm season.
Get a Change of Scenery
Studying at home is the ultimate trap for me. Bored? I can turn on the TV. Hungry? I can clean out my whole fridge. Tired? I can jump into bed. When I'm stuck on campus all day five times a week, studying at the library can be confining. Sometimes, I just want to look at something other than my desk and stacks of books.
Studying at coffee shops and cafes is a great way to get off campus, explore town, find new places, and be in a new environment.
Whether you like to study alone or with your friends, getting a change of scenery will feel like a breath of fresh air. Going to my favorite coffee shop and putting in my earphones helps me get in the zone and focus on nothing but homework. Not to mention, there's copious amounts of caffeine and Insta-worthy shots to take.
Don't Forget About Your Health
Just because you're pulling all-nighters doesn't mean you need to live off of junk food! Pushing your health aside is the last thing you should do during a stressful and demanding time.
Snacks give you something to munch on while you study, they fuel your body, and provide a built-in reason to take breaks. Packing snacks for the library is a great tip for saving money, and it saves you from vending machine food. If you're studying at home, cooking can be a stress-reliever and a nice distraction. If you don't have time to make full meals, fast and easy to make snacks are better than nothing!
If you miss those ants on a log (celery, peanut butter, and raisins) from your childhood, why not bring them back for midterms? It's all about how you work and what appeals to you most.
How are you thriving during midterms?
What are you tips and tricks to getting through midterm season? Let me know in the comments below!