Midterms are upon us and now is when you’ll start to realize that University is like one big hangover. Everywhere you look people are desperate for coffee, with dark circles under their eyes, and searching for somewhere quiet to sit as if they’re traumatized by noise. Just like you can pace your drinks, chug water before bed and eat greasy burgers afterward to make hangovers better, we’ve come up with 5 ways to help make those midterms bearable.
1) Get Organized, Seriously
Start by creating an outline for yourself of what you have to study for each exam and in which order you should be tackling the material. You want to stretch out the allocated time over a few days so you don’t have to be up until 2 am cramming for a midterm the night before. More fundamentally, make each study session productive by dividing up the time you have to prepare for each midterm and stay true to that plan. Actually sticking to your plan is the most important part, reward yourself when you do. If planners are your thing, this is what they do best, organize everything so it’s all in one place and easy to find and follow.
2) Find your space
Whether you learn best at the local Starbucks, in your bed with Netflix in the background, or hiding in a cubicle in a quiet library; find the space that works best for you and stick to it. Everyone is different on the spaces they like to work in, and finding your spot will help sync your brain with the books and will maximize the amount you take in.
3) Get that full 8 hours in...
Although probably tempting to spend the night before your exam in the library with a coffee in hand, it’s not ideal. You end up too exhausted to function the next day and won't remember what you studied. Therefore, take a cue from your elementary school days, and set a proper bedtime each night to ensure you get those precious eight hours that your body so desperately needs. If you go to bed at a proper time it makes it easier for you to get up at a decent hour. Giving you that extra time you need to read through your notes one more time before your exam.
4) Pizza vs Salad, Why you should probably choose Salad
‘University’ and ‘Eating Healthy’ may not sound like it should be in the same sentence, but we promise it will actually help. During midterms, you are more tempted to eat whatever’s around and easy. We bet you didn’t know that those hefty calories from the Pizza you ate last night, or the McDonalds breakfast you had this morning, will eventually leave you exhausted and do the opposite of helping you study. Instead, consume foods that are more natural and digested slowly such as fresh vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins. Maybe stop by the Bulk Barn and pick up bags of walnuts, almonds, or dried fruit.
Don't just focus on the food, also remember what you're drinking is just as important. Water helps by powering your brain when studying. During midterms, you get stressed quickly, and drinking water can calm you down and can revitalize you. We know sleep is hard with everything you have going on, but this is when hydration is the most critical. Strive to drink those eight glasses with 8oz of water each day.
5) Don’t forget to move
Don’t just sit around studying all day, when you’re on that break take a walk or head to the gym. Although working out seems it would be the least of your concerns with the thousands of things on your to-do list, it is important to keep up with a normal exercise routine during midterms. By getting your blood flowing, you will be more alert and capable of recalling more information come test time.
We know staying relaxed during midterm season is easier said than done. However, following these steps can help ease the anxiety of midterms. Remember, the more prepared you are, the easier the test and the less stress!