During midterms, studying is all that’s on our mind. So it comes as no surprise that health is not a top priority. Cramming in as much information as possible, within a small window of time is what I usually do for midterms. But staying healthy is important during this time too. The last thing you want is to get sick the day(s) before the midterm and be miserable while studying. Here are a few tips to keeping healthy while studying for your midterms.
- Sleep. First off, don’t forfeit your sleep in order to get more studying done. This doesn’t help in the long run, especially if you have a string of midterms to write. Not only that, but the short term and long term consequences are not worth the risk; it negatively affects your ability to study. So make sure to get between six to eight hours of sleep in order to be well rested, at least seven hours though. This time span has been studied to be the best frame for maximum memory retention. Any less or more will begin to affect your memory. So don’t throw sleep out of the window. Your mind and body need the rest.
- Eat. Make sure that you eat full meals in order to keep up your energy and body’s immune system. Don’t cut them out to just get more minutes of studying done. If you don’t have time for the full course meals that you should try to make time for, snacking is also an option while studying. Snack on fresh fruits, vegetables and protein; grapes and carrots are good options.
- WATER! I can’t stress how important this point is. Staying hydrated is key when studying. Dehydration has the potential to lead to fatigue and even focus loss. So stay hydrated if you want to maximize the productivity of your studying. As a tip, keep your water cool; this will help increase your alertness.
- Exercise. It seems counter intuitive to exercise while trying to juggle studying for midterms. But doing an activity that raises your heart rate, as you’ll quickly find, will quickly melt away stress. Exercising helps you become more focused on your work. Not only that, but it takes your mind away from the stress of midterm studying, hence giving your brain a break.
- Managing stress. Most of all, if you’re feeling really stress, be sure to access supports that are all around you. For instance, most schools have a ton of free resources including tutoring, accessibility, counselling, and health services, so be sure to make the most out of the resources that are at your disposal. Remember, mental health is important too, so be sure to talk with someone, whether that be to your parent, teacher, professor, school / college counsellor, family doctor, or another mental health professional. Reach out for help if you feel overwhelmed; there’s always someone you can talk to.
So remember to sleep, eat, drink water and exercise during midterms to boost your studying capacity and be aware of your mental health. And, good luck and happy studying!