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Managing the End of Semester Stress

By Rebekah Skeens
On April 25, 2018

Monitoring your mindset is the first step to handling stress.
Photo Courtesy of Bachelor's Degree Online

As the semester comes to an end, final papers and assignments tend to pile up. It’s easy to get caught up in the nearing of summer, but it’s important to finish out the semester to the best of your ability. The stress and anxiety of numerous assignments can be intimidating. Some students may let it get the best of them, but with a few stress-free tips, you can leave your end of semester worries behind.

According to Brad Waters of Psychology Today, the first step to managing stress is to monitor your mindset. As the last few weeks of classes set in, it’s important not to panic at the list of assignments left to complete. At times, it can be helpful to take a step back and take a deep breath before continuing.

Waters explains that our mentality is the largest obstacle to overcome. Before getting completely stressed out, look at the situation from someone else’s viewpoint. By analyzing the situation and understanding that you will most certainly not get anywhere by spending precious time crying or worrying about upcoming assignments. Tell yourself that it will all be over soon, and as soon as it is, there will be more time for relaxing rather than stressing over the inevitable.

The American Psychology Association states how taking a break from your stressor can make the projects go quicker than if you continued. The work must be done at some point in time, so it can’t be avoided completely, but breaks in between can become your greatest friend. It’s suggested to take anywhere between 20 and 30 minutes to step away from your work. While you’re away, your focus ultimately changes, so when you return, it’s likely your perspective has changed, and you will feel less overwhelmed.

The Association continues by sharing how too much isolation can be bad for you in stressful situations. We’ve all heard that when working on papers, we should place ourselves in a quiet place away from all distractions, but too much of that could be bad, studies show. When you begin feeling stressed or overwhelmed, instead of crawling into bed and avoiding the problem, try reaching out to someone. Your parents and friends are there to help and sometimes it’s good to have communication during tough times like those.

The Professors Guide from Chegg Study shares tips for students who have a lot on their plate at the end of the semester, but in all reality, there aren’t many students who don’t. A few tips shared deal with preparation and planning. One of the best tactics for avoiding the end of semester stress is to plan ahead. Make sure you have a clear idea as to when all your assignments and final papers are due. Give yourself plenty of time each day to work on each one of those a little at a time. This way, the night before they’re due, you won’t have to be stressing over whether you can finish it. Chegg emphasizes how crucial it is to work on assignments a little at a time, so you won’t have as much to do last minute.

Finally, from Sarah Wright, a stress and behavioral researcher from study.com shares the importance of sleep during this time. While in college, sleep is one of the most important aspects, but especially now. Instead of staying up half the night working on an assignment, get some rest and then work on it in the morning. Studies show how you’re more likely to do better on assignments after a good night’s rest versus trying to accomplish something in one trial.

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