By Solomon L. Myers, OMN Photographer
Finals are next week, so you know what that means: stress! Well, not always, but in today’s world I’m going to assume a chance of stress will blow through Oregon State University’s campus.
Luckily, we can be prepared. Having the motivation to study and be organized is key. You’d think after a year of working from home we’d have it all figured out, but we’re only human and being aware of what makes studying easier is really helpful. So, here are some motivation tips to get dead week going smoothly!
Organize your desk first thing in the morning:
We all have that moment when we move to our work space every morning to immediately open up our laptop and start the work day. For the next week, take a moment to first settle in a bit more. Organize the area and give yourself some space to work, grab some highlighters, get out a fresh notebook to take some notes. I personally like to write an inspirational note at the top of my paper to get my mind going in the right direction.
Make a cup of coffee or tea before you get to work:
Many of us do this anyway, but for those who don’t, I recommend it. Having a cup of something warm next to you will wake you up, fill your stomach and make your work space feel cozy. If anything, it’ll make you feel like your study space is aesthetic, which can make studying much more satisfying–plus you’ll get that caffeine kick, if you know what I mean.
Get your study playlist poppin’:
For me, music makes the study experience so much more enjoyable. If you really want to get jazzy and have a TV around, I like to go on YouTube and throw up a lo-fi channel. The soothing visual has a way of slowing down any rising stress levels you may be feeling.
Healthy snacks are key:
Before you stress-grab those Doritos and inhale the whole bag, think fast. Food actually plays a huge role in your brain function. As this article from Harvard Medical School said, “Like an expensive car, your brain functions best when it gets only premium fuel.”
Some college friendly suggestions you can try: pita bread and hummus, peanut butter and carrots or perhaps a rice cake with some cream cheese and lunch meat on top.
If those sound gross to you, just try to stick to whole foods, like fruits, nuts or beans–save the cheetos for the weekend. Check out this article for more ideas.
Gym access is limited and quarantine self-care has lost its charm, but we can’t keep making excuses. Try to go on a walk, do some pilates or even dance around for a few minutes. Getting your heart rate up and moving around a little can make you feel much more alert and prepared to study. This article gives lots of 10 minute workout ideas. Dixon also allows for booking gym slots up to two days ahead of time to maintain capacity limits.
The Academic Success Center on campus is also a great resource for finding strategies for motivation when the going gets tough.
So there we go. Pick out a couple of these tips to put into action. We’re headed into the spring and we can do this. Better weather and better health is headed our way. Take these last couple weeks to put your right foot forward as you make the long journey from bed to the kitchen and finally, to your desk.