Finals week can be a stressful time. But with our tips, you will feel more confident and prepared for your finals. Take a quick break and read on!
Don’t stress about being stressed. Breathe and try to focus on what you can do right at this time.
Create a realistic study schedule that includes breaks, plan activities with RecSports, talk with friends, and consult with campus assistance resources if needed (UF Counseling & Wellness Center).
Over the course of an hour, your brain can only focus for 45 min. Take a 10-15 min. break every hour.
Remember that exercising 20 min. a day will not only loosen you up from sitting for hours, but the hormonal response will help in easing stress as well as help you concentrate.
Make sure to consume ample amounts of water and 6-8 hours of sleep a night. Hydration and sleep will do far more for your cognitive function than all-nighters and caffeine.
Nutrition during finals’ time is crucial. A balanced diet will assist in lowering cortisol, the stress hormone, and will keep your immune system strong.
Do you get easily distracted while studying? “Your brain continuously scans your internal and external environment, even when you are focused on a particular task. To prevent distractions from hijacking your focus, use this ABC method as your brain’s brake pedal.” (Harvard Business Review, http://blogs.hbr.org/cs/2012/01/train_your_brain_to_focus.html )
“Become AWARE of your options: you can stop what you are doing and address the distraction, or you can let it go;
BREATHE deeply and consider your options;
Then CHOOSE thoughtfully; Stop? Or Go?” (Harvard Business Review)
Sometimes it is helpful to switch gear, to focus on a different topic. Take a quick break, stretch out to shift your focus from your mind to your body. Then come back to your desk and refocus on a new task (Harvard Business Review, http://blogs.hbr.org/cs/2012/01/train_your_brain_to_focus.html)
Remember, come exercise with us! The Southwest Recreation Center is opened from 6 a.m. to 1 a.m. Monday through Friday. The Student Recreation and Fitness Center is opened from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., Monday through Friday. We also have an adjusted schedule for Group Fitness classes offered during finals week, so make sure you take a break from studying, air out your brain, and feel fresh and ready to tackle your next studying session!
If you would like additional meditation and relaxation materials, check out the UF Counseling & Wellness Center's website. They have some great tools.
Good luck, Gators, and have a great holiday season!