Finding ways to cope with exam stress has always been imperative to taking care of one’s self as they navigate through their academic journey. As we all head into exam season during this pandemic, the need to support your wellbeing has never been more important. Your Peer Wellness Educator team has compiled a list of their best academic and wellness tips to help you cope with stress and avoid the chance of burnout.
1) Plan ahead! A key part of reducing stress during exam season is to make a plan and to make the plan early. We recommend printing off a blank calendar and writing down all of the readings and assignments you need to complete on the schedule. Space out the assignments based on how much time you will need to complete each task and give yourself plenty of time to complete each task before the due date.
2) Connect with your peers! There’s nobody better than your peers to help you through a tricky assignment or a complex reading. By putting your knowledge together, you can help each other succeed and hold each other accountable. Zoom is a great platform to hold study sessions. Remember: Meeting with your peers doesn’t always have to be strictly about academics! Take the time to destress and talk to your peers about how you have been feeling and develop friendships.
3) Reach out to your professors early! Is there something you have not been understanding as well as you would like to? Reach out to your professor through email or ask to set up a zoom meeting. Your best bet is to start the conversation early because exam season is when questions will start flooding into the professor’s inboxes and you want to get your opportunity for one-on-one help before it’s too late.
1) Fuel your body and your mind! We know that when studying the days can fly by and you can go hours without realizing you have not stopped to eat. Make sure to keep a schedule that allows you to eat healthily and gives you the opportunity to try your hand at cooking. Baking and cooking are a great way to take a break from your studies and destress by engaging in a fun and satisfying activity. Remember: Make healthy choices that will help fuel you and keep your mind sharp.
2) Take time for yourself! While it may feel that every moment you possibly have should be spent studying, this is not true. While studying is important, it is just as important to continue doing things that bring you peace and joy. No matter what, schedule some time into your day to do something you enjoy. This could be as simple as watching a tv show, having a relaxing bath or practicing a new hobby! We are not robots and cannot study 24 hours a day, nor should we! Take some time to be at peace and enjoy life around you. While exams can be overwhelming, remember it is okay to take time and relax and feel grounded. This will help you study and focus better!
3) Do not over caffeinate! While many of us love coffee, consuming too much caffeine can worsen the stress we already encounter from exams. Caffeine is a stimulant and increases your body’s stress levels. If you feel you need those cups of coffee to stay up and finish studying, listen to your body instead and get some sleep. You will feel more refreshed and will retain more information once you properly take care of your body. Try swapping out your coffee for herbal tea or water while you are studying!
We’d love to hear from you! If you have any exam stress tips that you think we should share, message us on Instagram @lupeerwellness
-Ashley Warburton and Samantha Sawyer, Peer Wellness Educators