- EXERCISE: You may be thinking to yourself, "Exercise? When will I have time to exercise?" The answer is simple, MAKE TIME. Exercise has a TREMENDOUS impact on your brain, especially during finals. Exercise promotes the release of endorphins which help reduce stress and anxiety and help boost your self esteem. It will also increase your energy level, help you focus, and improve your quality of sleep!
- FUEL YOUR BODY: Make sure to eat healthy and often. During finals week, stress can reduce your appetite which makes you skip meals. Don't let this happen. Your body and brain need fuel to operate and ensure that you don't fall asleep with your head on the key board. Leave the candy bars in your dorm room and bring healthy snacks to the library.
- HYDRATE: Energy drinks and other stimulants are often taken in order to stay up late and pull all nighters. By exercising, fueling your body, and sleeping (next tip) you should negate the want for additional help staying focused and awake. Replace your intake of energy drinks and other stimulants with water. Staying hydrated is crucial for brain function. Carry a water bottle with you every where you go and try to drink at least 96 ounces of water a day. You may start taking frequent bathroom visits, but just count them as your study breaks.
- SLEEP: When you have a competition, do you stay up late? Of course not. You wouldn't be able to compete at your optimal level if you were sleep deprived. The same thing goes for taking a test. Try to keep your sleep cycle as normal as possible. As you get closer to finals week, try to make an effort to go to sleep earlier in the night and wake up earlier in the morning. The morning is the best time to get work done because most people are asleep and it is the quietest time of the day. You may also have an early morning final and you will want your body to feel awake and energized, instead of sleepy and lethargic. If you start going to sleep by 10pm and waking up at 5am you will be more productive. I promise.
Well, there you go. Four tips to help you thrive during finals. I hope these tips help and that you have a successful end to your term!