8 Student Tips to Stay Healthy and Well During Midterms
Midterm exams are huge stress for students. At any age, it’s hard to be tried and assessed but when you know that your entire future depends on the result, it can be completely overwhelming. And while the desire to study no matter fatigue and hunger is understandable, following time management practices and healthy habits can actually bear much better fruits.
Here’s the list of top 8 healthy practices you can introduce in your daily schedule during midterm preparations to help you out during exams and after. With them, you’ll stay productive, cheerful, and sane even under pressure, and perhaps, even show better academic results than you expected.
Minimize Other Commitments
The first thing you can do is minimize other commitments and responsibilities you may have.
If you’re a part-time working student, ask your manager to give you a few extra days off or offer your colleagues to swap shifts with you. It wouldn’t be odd to inform your friends and family about the upcoming exams and that they shouldn’t expect you to be around too often any time soon.
If you have commitments that can’t be simply ignored – like kids or sick family members – ask someone to help you here. This may be your spouse, siblings, parents, or friends – just don’t undertake more than you can handle.
Develop a Healthy Eating Routine
While we’re definitely more than simply what we eat, food fuels our body and affects behavior, mood, energy levels, memorizing ability, and studying efficiency. It may be tempting to run on occasional high-calorie snacks, but eventually, you’ll notice a lack of energy to continue.
Therefore, make sure that you get enough nutrients to deal with intense mental activity and pressure. Your diet should include enough fiber, proteins, carbs, fats, and microelements. Cook a few days ahead to make it less time-consuming, and choose in favor of healthy snacks. Optionally, you can order healthy take-out food or ask your family to cook for you while you’re studying.
Have a Regular and Sound Sleep
The importance of regular and sound sleep can’t be overestimated. If you don’t get enough of it, many physical and mental problems will surely come. In the short run, lack of sleep can shatter your mood, productivity, and learning abilities, which is highly undesirable during midterm preparations.
Therefore, make sure that you get 8 hours of sleep per night and nothing disturbs your rest. To make that happen, follow some relaxation practices at least an hour before bed. Try meditation, comfort music, or a good book – whatever takes your mind away from worries before the upcoming exams.
Stick to a Healthy Study and Rest Schedule
Another thing to help you stay sane and productive is a healthy study-and-rest schedule. As the human brain’s resources are limited, it’s crucial to give it time to process the information and reboot. An average human brain requires 5-7 minutes of rest every 30-45 minutes of intense work, but these numbers are highly individual. Try to figure out what they are for you, and take regular breaks to achieve maximum efficiency.
Enjoy Exercising Breaks
The positive influence of exercising on the human body and mind is well-known: it trains muscles and heart, boosts energy levels and helps us stay cheerful and upbeat during the day. It’s also an excellent way to fight the stress that you feel during midterm exams.
While it’s a good idea to embed regular exercising sessions in your weekly routine, short exercising breaks are also a great activity to practice. This way, you’ll keep your muscles stretched and warmed up during the day with minimum time spent. Besides, a few physical exercises between studying sessions will help your restore your energy levels faster and prevent damaging effects on your back that often occur when you remain in a sitting position too long too often.
Don’t Overindulge Caffeine and Sugar
Many students mistakenly think that coffee and high-in-sugar snacks will help them study more efficiently. While it’s possible, the effect usually doesn’t last long but only brings more intense melancholy and lack of energy aftereffects connected with overwhelmed CNS and rapid fall of blood sugar level. Stimulators can even cause anxiety and depression if overindulged for a long time.
Therefore, try to cut down caffeine and sugar intake but rather replace them with green or herbal tea, fresh water, squeezed juices, and fruit and veggie snacks to boost your productivity without hurting your health.
Set Right Priorities
Although denying yourself any entertainment is a bad idea, fooling around for a few days in a row thinking that a couple of all-nighters will right the ship is even worse.
“Once the midterm exams are looming on the horizon, it’s all about the right priorities,” is sure Amy Hannigan, a second-year student from Harvard. “Start preparing sooner rather than wasting this time and you won’t have to deny yourself any social life and hobbies right before the exams.”
A doctorate student Steve has a different opinion:
“For a few years in college, I’ve learned that delegating works magic! I ordered my PhD thesis online, so while I am cramming for exams, my thesis writing is going fine without me”
Whatever way you choose, always having your priorities in mind will let you stay on track with your goals and aspirations and keep you safe from many wrong choices, including those that damage your health.
Study with Friends
Lack of social contacts during midterm exams is the most frequent reason why students feel anxious and depressed during this period. Studying with a group of friends is a great opportunity to satisfy the need for communication and belonging, and prepare for the exams more effectively. Not only can friends make this process fun and entertaining, but also explain to you the terms and concepts you are struggling with. Besides, there’s no room for stress when preparing for the midterms is fun and full of support.