Surviving Finals Week: 5 Stress Release Tips for Successful Studying

By Brittany Hawes on December 6, 2017

We’re almost there—the final stretch until the end of the semester is finally upon us! As the last official day of the fall semester draws near, we can all breathe a collective sigh of relief: we survived and can now enter three or so weeks of utter bliss (also known as “sleeping in”).

via Pixabay

But, alas… as with all school semesters, there is one final hurdle that students must leap over if they wish to have a peaceful and carefree winter break. That hurdle is known as finals week. Finals week can really take a toll on a student’s stress levels. There’s so much to do so that you feel properly prepared for finals week. For some students, finals week is packed with written exams. For others, you might have to give a presentation to your class. Still others might have to complete projects to complete their course or even have to do all three: exams, presentations, and projects.

Just thinking about finals week might have you feeling stressed. If you’re already feeling the pressure with finals week approaching, help is here! I bring to you five stress release tips for successful studying.

 1. Put away electronics and all distractions during study time

It’s best to put away distractions during the times you study for finals. Reduce stress by making the most of your studying time so you won’t be forced to cram the night before the test. Your grade might depend on how well you do on your final project and you might not be able to afford getting a low grade. Facebook and Netflix can wait. You’ll have time to use your cell phone and watch YouTube videos after finals are over.

 2. Visit stress relief events on campus

During finals week, campus groups and clubs will often host stress relief activities that will help students work off any building stress. Many times, information on stress relief techniques will be made available during these events so be sure to pick up a pamphlet and enjoy yourself while you’re there.

3. Get up and stretch every now and then

If you feel your neck muscles beginning to tense up or your lower half is starting to feel numb, then it’s definitely time to take a break and stretch. Sitting for too long isn’t healthy for anyone, so don’t feel guilty when you get up. In order to do your very best studying, you’re going to need to be feeling your very best.

4. Do some deep breathing techniques

A breathing technique that you can easily learn is one where you alternate breathing between your nose and your mouth. If you breathe in with your nose, then breathe that same breath out through your mouth. If you breathe in through your mouth, then breathe out through your nose. If you feel that anxiety beginning to creep its way back into your system as you’re working, take a deep breath and push it out. Make sure you pause and hold your breath in for at least five seconds before you exhale. Repeat this process a few times until you feel your body release any tension.

Another breathing technique you can try is an abdominal breathing technique. First, you place a hand on your stomach and your other hand on your chest. Now, take a huge deep breath in through your nose. Hold it for as long as you can and then release through your nose again. Breathing techniques like this will help you fight away any stress and help you to focus on the task at hand.

5. Know when it’s time to put your papers away and get some rest

I know it can be hard to do, especially when you feel like you have to do well on your finals in order to pass. But no matter how much you want to keep cramming information into your brain or continue putting together your final portfolio for class, it’s important that you get rest. Sleep will help you recharge for the day ahead and help you retain the information that you’re studying. It’s pointless to be whizzing through your notes if you get two hours of sleep after studying only to wake up and realize you don’t recall any of the stuff you rushed through.

Finals week is important but that doesn’t mean you have to jeopardize your health because of it. Taking care of yourself and eliminating stress by following the tips listed above can help you to survive through finals week and have a successful time studying.

Hi there! My name's Britt and I'm a senior majoring in English major at Florida State University. I have these crazy, big dreams of traveling the entire world and writing novels in my spare time. I love music, food, and the Japanese culture. I plan on teaching English in Japan upon graduation from Florida State. My first YA novel, Twisted, was published by Deep Sea Publishing Company in 2014. It won a Readers' Favorite Book Award that same year. Alongside schoolwork, I'm working hard on the second book in the Twisted series as well as a number of other novels.

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