How to Chill Out Before Finals
by: Kayla Fung
So, finals are coming up. Huge bummer, am I right? It seems like just yesterday when we had a month left before the dreaded day, but alas, finals lay a short while away, five days to be precise. In the frantic flurry of last minute studying, final projects, and nail-biting anxiety of borderline grades, it seems impossible to relax, even for a second. In this article I’ve come to offer a short compilation of ways to chill out before finals, because trust me, you need it.
- STOP STUDYING. Yes, you heard me right. No, I’m not kidding. It may seem counterintuitive, to take a moment off studying when you feel as though every second should be dedicated to poring over your notes and study guides. Through my four years as a student at CCA, I’ve endured countless quarterfinal and final exams and would like to consider myself somewhat of a seasoned veteran. When I first started out at CCA, the nights before my finals were spent downing coffee, anxiety ridden, and sleepless. Now, the night before my finals are spent sleeping. Yes, sleeping. I’ve found that cramming the night before is not benefactory, and my friends and peers agree. Your brain can only retain so much information, and overloading the system only hurts your ability to test the next day. The takeaway: Don’t overdo the studying. Relax.
- Have fun! What a novel concept to the average CCA student. Fun? Leisure? What is that? I know having fun and going out with friends are the last things on your mind the weekend before finals, but I assure you, it is the key to your success next week. Now don’t get me wrong, don’t get wild this weekend, everything in moderation. But come on, let loose, you’re WAY too tense right now. Studying is best and most effective when punctuated with well-time breaks to allow your brain to rest after running overtime for hours. You need to take breaks and relax in order for your brain to remain refreshed and in turn retain information more efficiently. The takeaway: Take a break, have fun!
- If you absolutely must study all weekend with no time at all for any breaks, then I recommend study groups. I discovered the value of collaborative study throughout my years at CCA and believe it is an amazing asset to maintain academically. It is a great way to stay engaged and focused and to keep the boredom at bay. It’s also a great way to incorporate a more lighthearted environment around the idea of finals, and is extremely effective to lower the intense stress levels at hand.
The takeaway: Study groups, try it out. Thank me later.
So there we have it. My personal ways to cope with finals that I’m now sharing and passing on to you. I acknowledge that the solutions to dealing with finals stress I am offering up may not work for everyone, but you never know until you try it. I encourage you to experiment with ways to deal with the stress of finals and to find or adapt ways that work for you.