October is a month filled with crisp air, colorful leaves, a plethora of apple cider, and oh yea, midterms.
Let’s face it, midterm is a time when we fuel our bodies with caffeine, and when the idea of pulling an all-nighter for academic purposes is considered.
A way to cope with stress is to stay organized. I survive off of my planner, which is in my backpack 24/7. It helps me stay on top of things, be aware of upcoming deadlines, and condense my life into a “let’s take it week by week” mindset.
Some midterm preparation strategies to keep in mind:
- Space out your study sessions
- Try to refrain from all-nighters. Turns out showing up to an exam groggy and exhausted may not be the best way to approach a successful result
- Maintain notes in class, these will help when reviewing content before the midterm
The University of New Hampshire has many resources you can utilize:
Center for Academic Resources. Dani Adler, Associate Director of CFAR, provides a cohesive look at what CFAR is all about, “The CFAR professional and peer academic mentor staffs work individually with students to teach them how to study smarter, not harder. Students develop study strategies that match the demands of their classes, the resources available to them, and their particular learning style. We work within the students’ course materials on exam preparation and exam taking skills, note-taking and reading skills, and time management and organization skills.” CFAR website
Connors Writing Center:
A great, and sometimes unknown, resource for UNH students. Through one-on-one writing conferences, the CWC staff engages writers in conversation about their writing. Revision and development of ideas is emphasized, and the ultimate goal is to improve a student’s writing through learning about writing stylistic elements, brainstorming, and organizational strategies. You can easily make an appointment here: make an appointment
While midterms and academic work in general can be stressful, overwhelming, and exhausting, it should be enjoyable, educational, and important. As Wildcats, I think we have a great approach of “work hard, play hard” but if you find that you are playing too hard and it is becoming difficult to focus on classes and studying, perhaps take a step back and analyze how you can switch things up to prepare for midterms.
A helpful way to take deep breaths and get back on track with your own happiness and feeling of success is to meditate or engage in exercise. Yoga, meditation, and other physical workouts have been proven to release endorphins and de-stress your body.
To give it a try, I did some yoga after a particularly long day. I was feeling exhausted and restless, and decided to try out some stretches and exercises to loosen up. As a result, my mind also took a deep breath and I felt so much better going to bed that night because my brain was accepting sleep over more studying and worrying about things that, let’s be real, I probably didn’t need to worry about at midnight.
I have provided some photos of my yoga poses for your entertainment. It really works wonders when you get physically active.
UNH Campus Recreation:
Provides many group fitness classes, offering an array of options from yoga to spinning to Zumba. Going with a group of friends is truly fun and a great way to de-stress together. Group Fitness Schedule
UNH Health Services:
Provides many services to help you learn new skills to better cope with stress:
- Weekly drop-in meditation sessions are available Mondays from 12:15pm – 12:45pm in the MUB 340.
- Massage therapy, either a traditional massage, or a hot stone massage, prices start at $40. You can make a massage appointment online or by calling (603) 862-3823.
- FREE yoga classes on Wednesdays and Fridays from 12:00pm – 1:00pm in the MUB Wildcat’s Den. All levels welcome, bring your own mat or buy one at Campus Recreation.
- Meet with a Wellness Educator/Counselor to develop a personalized wellness plan to help you cope with stress.
- Light therapy for “winter blues” and biofeedback to learn relaxation skills are also available.
Let’s get through Midterms together, Wildcats. Take care of each other, take deep breaths, and maybe drink more water than coffee once in a while. [I will definitely be taking my own advice on the last one…]