It’s that crazy time of year again! Are we talking about the holiday season, you wonder? No, finals week at SHU, of course! As everyone gears up for the final stretch of papers, projects and exams, we thought we’d share a few tips for avoiding total burnout. Remember – all stress is not all bad. It can motivate us to achieve great things (including actually finishing that paper)! Stress management is a skill that can be learned; whether you are naturally laid back or kind of wound tight.
Our top 3 stress management skills are time management skills
- Organize – sit down with all of your syllabi and make a comprehensive to do list of your assignments and exams (just writing it all down might help lessen that feeling of mental overload).
- Prioritize – Which items on your list require the most time and effort? When are the due dates? Which class do you really need to do well in? Give some thought to which items need to go to the top of your list.
- Create a plan/schedule – What is your peak time of your day, when you have the most energy and focus? Use it to your advantage. Break down your day to include meetings, work, practices, tasks of daily life, commuting, etc. (Remember - this level of micromanaging your time is only temporary) Take it from us - make time for something fun or relaxing every day to avoid the bad burnout place. And stay flexible because life happens.
Beware of time stealers! This could be constant attention to Facebook/twitter/texting, socializing, a messy room & desk, watching TV, an inability to say “no”….there are many ways our time seems to disappear. You all know what your favorite way to waste time is – just try to avoid getting sucked in and limit that behavior in between now and the end of the semester.
What coping skill works for you? Venting to friends? Getting in a good work out? Listening to music? Relaxation or breathing apps on your phone? Power naps? Whatever it is, do it! Taking care of yourself is crucial during times of high stress. When you are feeling overwhelmed use healthy coping skills to hit the reset button.
And don’t forget to stop by the s.w.e.e.t. (student wellness education & empowerment team) peer educators’ STRESS FREE ZONE on Weds. Dec. 7th from 12 – 5 pm in the old chapel! Take a few minutes out of your hectic schedule to relax and enjoy some free goodies. Good luck on finals, everyone!