Do not be a mess, control finals stress

Tessa Pauls, Features Editor

Christmas break is approaching fast and so is finals. Naturally it’s every student’s favorite and least favorite time of year. Despite the cold winds, and short days, some students can’t wait for the holidays, but every student and teacher loves December because it means winter break.

A sacred week and a half off school that everyone starts counting down for after Thanksgiving break. Yet, despite how relaxing and amazing the break is, it brings about the most stressful time of students lives.

That’s right, just two to three weeks after winter break is finals. Tests and homework are already becoming more abundant and stressful in preparation for this torturous event. When teachers and administration make the test 3 to 4 times longer than necessary and make students remember everything after 4 months of learning finals gets way more stressful.

It’s hard to deal with all the stress and studying, and many students don’t know how to deal with either. There are many ways to relieve stress, but one of the easiest and most natural ways is to exercise. 

A short exercise break can release endorphins that make you feel better, burn off calories, and help you focus. If working out isn’t your thing progressive muscle relaxation is a popular method that can be done anywhere. You start at the top of your body and work down by tightening, holding, then releasing the major muscle groups in your body. Another easy way to stay focused when studying is to eat healthy since healthy meals and snacks improve your concentration and memory abilities. Fruits and vegetables are great choices that will give you more energy. 

Two easy ways to decompress during finals week that are so mundane they often get forgotten about are staying hydrated and getting enough sleep. Your brain works best when its hydrated, and because coffee dehydrates you, for every coffee you drink, drink a glass of water. Pulling all-nighters are only harmful, getting enough sleep is more important than getting an hour of extra study time. With this extra sleep it is more likely that students will retain the information better and be more energized to take your test. 

The last way to study better and lower your stress levels is to take breaks. Non-stop studying will exhaust you and you will retain very little of the information. Studying in shorter chunks does more for the average student and allows every brain to retain more information. 

This time of year is one of the stressfullest of the whole year for almost every student. Use your winter break to re-energize, and then come back prepared for finals. Study smart to keep the stress away.