The holiday season has officially arrived and for some of our Divine readers this an implication that holiday break is approaching; but before you can get to the light at the end of the tunnel one must tackle the “midterm madness”! Consider these strategies to lighten your scholastic load.
Study: Use your study guide(s). This may seem like a “no brainer” however I can recall several times where the day of the big exam I’ve had fellow colleagues scavenging around looking for a spare copy for a last minute study session. I’d say put those guides to use as soon as possible don’t toss them to the side because the exam is two weeks away. Break the guide into sections and assign a different section to review each study session. Organization and pacing yourself will prevent you from becoming overwhelmed with the course load and lower stress levels.
Form study groups; I recommend this because I have found this to be the most helpful in my college career in terms of study tactics. We each learn differently therefore the way your professor lectures may go right over your head, not to worry. In study groups there’s usually at least one person that understands the material and others chime in broadening the scope of understanding. Members of the group may be able to reach you in a manner your professor wasn’t able to. Also, clarifying questions can be answered from things like, “what scantron or bluebook did Professor say to bring in on exam day,” to “What formulas will be provided versus the ones we need to know”?
Utilize your social media platforms. Are you running out of ideas and perspectives for your term paper? Try soliciting feedback from your social media family and friends. This is a great way to catch a productive study break, engage your followers, and bounce around ideas. Especially if your topic is controversial. Need to collect data for your stats class? Form polls/surveys using apps like surveymonkey, polldaddy, and surveyswipe and ask your followers to participate.
Visit your professor during office hours. It’s always best to get information directly from the source. Your professor is included, during office hours you have an opportunity to obtain one-on-one assistance and ask direct questions you may have been too shy to ask in a lecture hall filled with 249 other students. Utilize this time, professors are required to make themselves available to their students for additional support in the course.
Rest/Relaxation: As mentioned in my previous article, “Top five college tips for returning and first generation college attendees”, college life comes with a partying culture. This isn’t bad, you’re in the prime of your youth enjoy it. Everything should be done in moderation, this includes knowing when to “turn down a turn-up”! Midterms are definitely the time. Be sure to get a significant amount of rest during exams week. A fatigued body is a fatigued mind, it’s difficult to focus if you’re sleep deprived.
Exercise, lowers stress levels, cardio and resistance training help the body to release endorphins which can rejuvenate and replace stress with a euphoric aura, can we all agree that our performance is better when we’re in a happier stress free state? Yoga and stretching techniques aide the mind and body in relaxing and quieting the mind! Yes, Silence is necessary. Unplug from all of the distractions and allow your mind to consume silence and detox from anything that will not serve you during midterms week. Your primary focus is scoring Big!
Nutrition: You should always be mindful of what you decide to consume. Midterms aren’t an excuse to grab quick fixes from the drive-thru, guzzle pumpkin spice latte’s 2 to 3 times a day, and load up on processed sugars. This is a sure way to crash. Treat your body right, take care of it the reciprocity is amazing. Be sure you’re consuming fresh fruits and vegetables, drink plenty of water (spring), and try and get some sunlight if possible. The food you eat is your body’s fuel and is replicated in your cells. Decide whether you want to be of leafy greens, berries, and H20 or hot cheetos, punch, and pastries
Reward/Treat Yourself: Self love is pertinent for us as black women so any opportunity to show ourselves some love should be taken.Some of us may have been afforded the opportunity of being rewarded for doing well in our academics by our parents, yet once you’ve reached college level it may have slowed down to no longer happening. So what! Give yourself an incentive to look forward to at the end of midterms (i.e. if I score at least an 80% on all my midterms I will treat myself to that cute dress I saw online the other day). This is a great way to self motivate and remind yourself to celebrate the small victories along the way towards the bigger goal. You don’t have to wait to be rewarded for your accomplishments. Celebrate you whenever!
Preparing for midterms and finals (all study tips apply to both) doesn’t have to be a hassle of stress and frustration. Preparation and organization will increase your chance of yielding desired results. Don’t fool yourself, all the prayer, affirmations, and wishful thinking can go but so far without actually studying, which is the root of many students’ stress. Remember “failure to plan, is planning to fail.”
Ms. Lowery – “I reside in Los Angeles, Ca. I am former middle school teacher currently working in social service. My hobbies are reading, dance, gardening, and traveling.”