Winter is here. The semester is coming to a close, and students and faculty alike frantically fumble about in an attempt to prepare for finals. Chaos emerges. How are you going to survive? When will the nightmares end? Who can save you from the atrocities that plague the student population? My name is Fernando. I’m here with several tips to help you stay afloat during finals.

On the twelfth day of finals, my true self gave to me:

12 Cups of Coffee
Anything is possible, with a ton of caffeine in your system. I was trapped in the library editing videos, writing scripts, and sound engineering (which I am terrible at by the way) with only three hours of sleep at night. I will admit, this was not my best work (mostly because I had no idea what I was doing), but I survived. How? Coffee. One cup to help you get out of bed. Two cups to power through class. Nine cups throughout the evening for papers, presentations and study sessions. I’m not a math whiz, but the numbers look good to me. Stay caffeinated, my friends.

11 Hours Studying
You are going to spend a lot of time studying. I mean, a lot of time. It’s a good idea to start planning your study sessions. Plan where you want to study, when you want to study, and who you want to study with. If you decide to study at the library, they will provide snacks and coffee in the evening. Be careful though, as this is also when the library is busiest. Try studying at a different time. It sounds horrible, but studying at 5 am is rather relaxing. Especially when you hit coffee number twelve. Who you study with is just as important. If your peachy friend has failed the last two tests, you need to let them go. Find a study buddy who likes to fill out the study guides. If you find someone that shares that study guide with you, marry them. You may not pass all your finals, but at least you have a chance at a happy marriage.

10 Students Procrastinating
I know this is everyone’s go-to study technique. It can work sometimes. I wouldn’t suggest it, but I know you’re going to do it anyway Procrastinating will only make everything worse – much worse.

9 Hours Napping
Even though you are going to be up late, it’s still important to get some sleep. You know you have a problem when several of the professors in your department are hounding you for not sleeping. I suggest you at least try to take a few naps throughout the day. Just be sure to not drool on the couches. I would rather not have your saliva on my leg, and I’m positive others will agree.

8 Groupmates Slacking
Chances are that your groupmates are not pulling their weight for the project, both literally and figuratively. I don’t know what the former has to do with anything, but I figured I would throw it out there. Of all the times your group could ditch you with the work, it’s finals week. The only tip I can give you is to do the work. Don’t worry; you can throw your group under the bus later.

7 Friends a Snacking
Food is always the answer. You may feel a bit stressed out and want to chow down on some ice cream. Do it! Whip up some delicious study treats, or find someone that can buy food for you. Even if it’s with a group of your friends, sharing is caring. If you are a poor unfortunate soul like myself, there’s always Domino’s. There’s nothing better than a large philly cheese steak pizza while you finish a project just hours before its due. It makes the solitude feel less cheesy.

Keep at it, folks!

Keep at it, folks!

6 Hours Crying
You have three exams, two papers, your car broke down, your boyfriend/girlfriend broke up with you, and your dog ran away from home. That’s a lot of stress – distress, to be exact. It’s ok to sit down and have a good cry. I’d probably cry too… I wouldn’t, but I assume that’s the normal response to these kinds of things. Just be sure that you are not in the middle of the University Center when you do. Everyone is going to feel awkward. It’s probably better if you don’t.

5 Golden Memes
With the amount of work you are putting into finals, you might just lose your sanity. What better way to stay sane than with memes? Take a study break to enjoy a few laughs. Rumor has it that there is a magical papaya that floats around online, and if shared, it will help you pass your classes. If you have a rhetoric and persuasion test, this is your only hope.

4 Spotify Playlists
Babies are not dishwasher safe. A common fact that usually goes unstated. Another understated fact is that music is good for the soul. If you need help motivating yourself, try listening to music as you work. As always, use caution. You need to find the right music you can listen to while you work. Choose incorrectly, and you might find yourself dancing and singing in your underwear at 3am. There’s nothing wrong with that, but you’re still on page one of your paper. Put your pants on and get to work. You can put your modeling career on hold for one more night.

3 Hard Copies
I recommend that you have three hard copies of an assignment. It doesn’t matter what it is. If you want to succeed, then you must heed this rhyme that could save you some time. Three is key. The first copy is the one that you turn in. The second copy is the backup. If you lose the first, you won’t need to rewrite the entire paper ten minutes before class. The third is the sacrifice. Burn it. Tear it. Do whatever you feel necessary to show that paper how you really feel. Who knows; maybe it will help you get an A.

2 Late Assignments
“Better late than never.” This hold true for just about anything except for the new Justice League film. Never is better in that case. If you still have assignments you haven’t completed, it’s best to do them now. Yes it’s more work, but Fs only bring you shame. It’s probably a good idea to turn your assignments in on time, but if your professors take pity, take all the points you can get.

And Dr. Don Jones doing tai chi
If you haven’t read the recent article published on the website about DJ and his tai chi – read it. It’s amazing. I bring this up because this could help you. Any sort of meditation can help you to focus your thoughts, control your breathing, and visualize your success. I can’t promise it will work for everyone, but it’s worth a shot. If you really want to try something new, get in touch with DJ. He would love to tell you all about it!

I wish all the students reading this good luck! Have safe travels for break!

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Fernando Bauzo is a Communication major.