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Alumni Blog - March 2024

It's Time for Finals: How to Cope with Stress











Do you get caught up worrying about final tests and papers? Do you feel overwhelmed with test anxiety? Do you hold such high expectations for yourself that your brain freezes up? Do you procrastinate so much that you end up cramming all your studying in the night before? Well, you are not alone.


It’s that time of year that sends panic into every college students’ lives: Final Exams. Even though you have spent all semester preparing for them, they are still a terror. On the brighter side, you have plenty of time to prepare for them if you start now. You can save yourself a little bit of stress by preparing early and finding ways to cope with any added stress. So, what are some things that you can do to help prepare you for your upcoming exams and also alleviate your anxieties?


Start Studying Now






If you begin studying for your exams a month early, you have time to really make sure that you know the material. Set up a schedule for studying that you follow all the way up to the big test. Being consistent with your studies will definitely help you understand the subject more, and will make you feel much better by reducing the stress caused by the lack of understanding the material. It wipes out procrastination. Procrastinating mostly happens when you are so worried about something that you keep putting it off to avoid stress, but it actually causes more stress and anxiety putting it off. Being proactive by studying ahead of time will reduce the extra stress caused by procrastinating.


Seek Support From the Academic Center or Professors



Most colleges have some sort of academic center, student support center, tutoring, etc., and they are there for you to go to when you need some extra help with your classes. Take advantage of this free help! Some places have study skills workshops, study groups for specific classes/subjects, one on one tutoring, and many other different groups designed to help with your academics. These study groups are often led by fellow students who have taken or are taking the same course. There is also a TRIO program, Student Support Services (SSS), offered at several colleges that is there to help you succeed. It is very similar to the Upward Bound program, but it is for college students. You can also go directly to your professor and ask them for extra help with your assignment. They could also help you with creating a study guide that would prepare you for their exam. Don’t let stress take over when you feel like you don’t understand something. Go to the academic support center or your professors to get some extra help. Everyone wants you to succeed!

Practice Self-Care



It is so very important to take care of ourselves. It is a common misconception that taking care of ourselves is “selfish,” and we should be focused on making other people happy. If you don’t take care of yourself first, you will not have anything to offer others long-term. A good example is the airplane oxygen mask; you have to pull your mask down over your face first before you can help anyone else. You won’t be much help to others if you can’t breathe either. Take some time when you’re feeling stressed out, or even if you’re not, to do something you enjoy. Have a spa night, read a good book, go out and exercise, the possibilities are endless! You need to make sure you eat your three meals a day, get 8 hours of sleep, go for a walk, and laugh with your friends. Those are all good things to practice for self-care. If you can do three positive things for yourself every day when you’re stressed out from school, you’ll be glad you did!

Sometimes we can talk ourselves out of getting help.  It can be scary to join a new study group, go to office hours, or spend time taking care of ourselves; but doing so is a healthy risk worth taking. College is stressful. When things start piling up on you, make sure to take care of yourself. YOU ARE WORTH IT!!


Good luck on your final exams!!



Last Updated: 3/4/24

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