Secrets for staying sane during spring

By Josh Steinberg

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With the end of the spring semester looming over like clouds in the New England sky, the temptation to slack off is stronger than ever. The weather is starting to warm, trees are beginning to show signs of life and you have more homework than ever before.

Here are a few tips that I use to keep chugging through the thick, arduous road that is finals week.

Plan Ahead

By now you undoubtedly know when your final tests and papers are all due. If you don’t know these dates, I strongly recommend checking back into Planet Earth and asking your teacher. Immediately. If you do not have a planner already, make one. Write down the dates you have assignments due. For me, being able to see when I have things due makes all the difference.

Use your time wisely

There is nothing more tempting than leaving everything to the last minute. “I have an assignment due Monday? That’s what Sunday night is for!” Wrong. Get that mentality out of your head, at least for the next two weeks. It may be easy to skate by during the semester when you have minor assignments due every few days, but when it comes to final tests and papers, it causes a lot of unnecessary stress. Try not to leave all your assignments for the night before. Give yourself an extra day to proofread. It will help eliminate those careless errors that make the difference between a B+ and an A.

Take necessary breaks

It is unhealthy to spend 48 hours straight on the 17th floor of the library with your nose pressed to the pages of a book you could care less about. It is okay to take a break, but use your time wisely. Do not take an hour to head to the UPub for a casual beer. Go to the gym. Get your blood pumping and sweat a little bit. If weather permits, go outside for a little while and toss around the ol’ pigskin.

Eat healthy

Aside from being an overall good habit to develop, eating healthy will give you the added energy and stamina to hit the books longer and harder than ever. Try to avoid food and drinks that are high in sugar. They might be delicious at the time but give it an hour or so and you will be crashing harder than the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl. Eat fruits, vegetables and drink plenty of water.


Don’t stress

At least not too much. It is important to put in an adequate amount of work to do well but try to relax. It is obvious that with finals comes stress, but remember that it is not the end of the world. Remind yourself that getting an A- does not mean your family will disown you. When you find yourself on the verge of tears from overwork, take a deep breath, glue that patch of hair you just ripped out back onto your skull and take five minutes to let your mind refresh itself.

The temptation of spring is out there but luckily with the weather in Massachusetts that is subject to change any second now. We have entered the homestretch of another semester and everybody out there has the potential to finish strongly. Align your priorities and work hard. It is much more gratifying giving cheers to the fact that you just aced your last test than drinking to forget the fact that you just bombed it. Finish strong UMass and have an awesome summer.

Josh Steinberg is a Collegian columnist. Josh can be reached at [email protected]