The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

Staff Editorial: Tips for a stress-free finals week

Finals are getting closer every day — 20 papers and essay-style exams loom overhead and threaten chaos — but never fear! There are steps you can take to prepare yourself and tackle these monsters head-on for a healthier, less stressful finals week. Here are a few tips to keep you in tip-top shape during this hectic time.


Work ahead of time, and work smart

Instead of watching reruns on Netflix all night since your paper isn’t due for a whole ‘nuther week, set aside an hour or two to prep for that research paper, or review one of the chapters that’s sure to be on your final. If you proactively break down all of your work into bite-sized pieces, it won’t seem so overwhelming.

A popular work model is the Pomodoro technique: work for 25 minutes, then take a five minute break. Rinse and repeat. After four cycles of this, take a 30-minute break and then get back to work!

To keep yourself focused, find a calm study space free of distractions. This might be a dorm room desk, or the Greenleaf, or the library, or the Starbucks across the street — it all comes down to wherever you are personally capable of blocking out the world and getting down to it.


Go to sleep

Last-minute cramming is the main staple of the college student’s study diet, but that doesn’t mean it’s good for you. Your brain performs better when it’s well-rested: you’ll retain information better, and come test day you won’t run the risk of dozing off mid-exam or sleeping through the testing period altogether.

Still struggling to understand a key concept or solve a tough problem during one of your late-night study sessions? A new Lancaster University study suggests that “sleeping on it” actually helps your brain solve those difficult problems. Catch a few Zs and try again in the morning.


Eat right

Sure, grabbing a quick burger to bring back to your study cave means more time in front of the books, and that soda might give you the caffeine kick you think you need, but you know it’s true — your body feels gross when you fuel it with junk, and you won’t be running at top speed. Fruits, veggies, whole grains and lean meats are your friends, and for those who are not inclined towards wheat or meat, stay on top of your healthy alternatives, too.

Also, drink plenty of water! Your brain works better when it’s hydrated, and you’ll feel better, too.


With these tips under your belt, get ready to slay your finals and plow into winter break. Get to work, and good luck!

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