With midterms finally coming to an end, December exams are beginning to creep closer and closer. For some, this is a time where coasting can begin, but for others (including myself), this final stretch is a time to finally get caught up on all those syllabus readings you pledged to “come back to later”. All is not lost, however, it’s time to take the time to pause, and get on top of your workload.
Take a deep breath. While it may seem overwhelming, stressing out about it will not help. The first step is to break your work load down into easy-to-accomplish tasks and goals. Don’t think of your school work as a monolithic title wave, as that’ll just discourage you from getting to work.
2. Make a to-do-list
We all can relate to our professors’ love affairs with the syllabus, but checking out the syllabus and reminding yourself of deadlines and expectations is always a good idea. Set reasonable goals, prioritize and make sure that you organize your time based on tasks, rather than feelings.
3. Look at your schedule
You know your class schedule off by heart, hopefully, but if not, take a long hard look, figure out how much time you actually have free to work on outstanding assignments, do readings and study. While it may be all work and no play for a few weeks, also make sure you plan in times on your schedule so you can eat, de-stress and get some (much-needed) social interaction from time to time.
Now that you know what needs to be done and the days you are most free, begin to plan when you want to get your work done. Create a calendar or use an agenda to slot in times that you should be doing work. Work around your class times, shifts you have at work or when you have to meet up with your club or organization around school.
Don’t give up sleep or meal-times for the sake of productivity, as both of these things are necessary for you to keep focus.
5. Follow the plan
Now that a plan is put in place, follow it. It may be tempting to turn on Netflix and watch 8 seasons of Friends in rapid succession, but keep your priorities straight. Keep your phone in another room while you work to limit distractions, put on some soothing Beethoven and start pumping out pages. Don’t back out of the plan you’ve created to get your work done, follow it religiously.
While stress is inevitable, it doesn’t have to affect your productivity. Create a plan, get organized, and ace those final exams and assignments, Badgers!