Don’t let midterms get you down, focus on your health

October 3, 2017

Scribe staff

     When the weather gets gloomy, it seems that all we want to do is snuggle up with a cup of coffee or hot chocolate and forget about all our responsibilities.

     This feeling usually begins in October when the weather gets chillier. Unfortunately, this time of the year is also when schoolwork begins to kick in, and students start to prepare for midterms.

     We don’t have to state the obvious – midterms are tough for students, but a necessary part of the college experience.

     While we may just want to wrap ourselves in a blanket burrito and never come out, we have to remember to plan ahead, study and focus on our success as college students.

     If you’re having trouble focusing, don’t make it about your stress. Of course, this is easier said than done.

     At The Scribe, we’re students too, and every one of us will have to juggle the impending doom of term papers, exams, group projects and presentations at some point this month if we haven’t already. Many other students also juggle outside responsibilities alongside preparing for these daunting class tasks.

     But in the midst of stressing out, we can also learn how to have fun (yes, these words can apply to studying for midterms), while reviewing half a semester’s worth of material.

     If you don’t know where to begin studying, consider using multiple methods to learn your material.

     According to U.S. News, a mix of visual, auditory and kinesthetic learning styles can further reinforce how you learn and retain key concepts.

     Draw visual concepts that need further understanding, watch and listen to a helpful YouTube video and try to predict questions that you might learn on the test.

     You also don’t have to do it alone; form a study group with some of your classmates and close friends, and quiz/teach each other concepts that all of you may be struggling with.

     If combining multiple ways of studying or working with a group isn’t your style, try focusing on your notetaking first. Review and rewrite notes right after class to save the information to your short-term memory, says U.S. News.

     It’s better to nail down those examples of that pesky equation than have to relearn it 12 hours before the test.

     But all things considered, including our full- or part-time course loads, extracurricular activities and jobs, don’t let the stress of these tests, projects and papers get you down.

     During this time, we might feel like we can’t prioritize our mental and physical health, but this is not true.

     Failing to take care of ourselves will only make us more stressed and potentially contribute to unsatisfactory grades on everything we stressed out so much for.

     Working out 20 to 60 minutes a day can help to manage this stress and clear our minds, according to Mike Milliken, program director of college wellness at Bates College. Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables and proteins to give yourself energy to focus.

     Midterms won’t last forever, and eventually we won’t have to worry about them anymore.

     As for now, remember to put the main priority first: yourself.