Yes, that dreaded time is coming up. Finals. Whether your finals last a couple days like mine, a couple weeks, or you are just preparing for a big test, these tips should help you.
1. get more sleep
I know, the thing everybody tells you- “get sleep for your big day of testing tomorrow” “Make sure you are well rested for the best results”… but really. I find that when I get a good sleep in, I feel better the next morning and better when I’m taking the final. I highly recommend going to bed a little earlier than usual, or sleeping in a bit if you have the time in your morning.
2. eat healthy and EAT BREAKFAST
Again, the thing everybody tells you- “breakfast is the most important meal of the day” “make sure you are eating those fruits and veggies” … seriously. I don’t know about you, but I eat breakfast every morning. Usually I have a bowl of cereal or some toast. But during finals week, I like to eat a bigger breakfast. I might have a healthier cereal that is protein or energy rich. If you don’t usually eat breakfast, for sure eat breakfast for finals. But remember, breakfast is important for every day not just when you have big tests like finals.
I have a serious problem. It’s called I don’t drink enough water. I bring a camelbak water bottle to school almost everyday. But there’s always that one day when I filled it up and forget to put it back in my backpack or took it out last night and never put it back in. I am not sure why, but if I don’t have a water bottle I don’t drink water that day. So on days like those where I forget my water bottle, I find myself feeling very cloudy, like my head ways 50 pounds, and very very thirsty. Of course it is important to drink water any day, but especially important when it’s finals / you have a big test. Always stay hydrated and I highly recommend buying a water bottle if you don’t already own one. Or you can but a plastic smart water bottle (maybe smart water will really help you with your testing).
4. dress comfily
I think it goes without saying that during finals week you want to be as comfortable as possible. Nobody cares if you look like crap. If you feel better wearing sweat pants, joggers, or even pajamas just gopher it. Literally no one cares- people will probably relate to you more and be jealous of how comfy you look. Personally during finals, I love sporting rompers and t-shirt dresses. Rompers and dresses are really easy to wear because you just put it on– you don’t have to pick out a shirt and pants. I also love wearing really soft clothes because it makes me feel very warm and cozy.
I looooove taking notes. Whether it’s taking notes over a textbook reading or taking notes over old notes, I just love it. It is proven that writing things down helps you remember better than just hearing or reading the material. Notes are key to studying for finals. If you struggle with taking notes, I highly recommend buying some really fine tip pens or markers and looking up ‘organized notes’ on pinterest for inspiration. It’s seriously note taking goals.
6. make practice tests
One of my favorite things to help me study for tests is making practice tests. I like to look over the study guide, textbooks, and any worksheets I have then make a practice test to test me over the stuff I just read. So I will have fill in the blank questions and a lot of multiple choice questions. This just helps me to remember stuff better and I think it’s fun.
I can not study without music. I get easily distracted and not having music makes studying 100000 times worse because it’s so boring. When I play music studying isn’t (as) bad and I can focus a lot better. My favorite things to listen to is this playlist on spotify or I love to listen to the Mumford and Sons album- Wilder Mind.
8. study place
It is so important to study in a place where you feel comfortable. Whether this be in a cute cafe or coffee shop, at your desk, or my personal favorite- the living room floor, the place you study can seriously affect your motivation. Just find a good place and spread out all your stuff. I love having my laptop, notebook, pencils, thin-tip markers, and anything else I need.
When I study it is always a must to have good snacks. I love having cashews, fruit leather strips or ropes, beef jerkey, apples, chips and hummus, chips and salsa bean dip (maybe the recipe will be in an upcoming post??), ice cream shake, fruit smoothies, french fries, and much much more. Basically I eat any food that I like. During finals week, I usually give in to cravings more than usual because it’s important to be eating food I love. When I eat food I love I am in a better mood and being in a better mood helps me focus more and make studying seem not as bad.
10. don’t procrastinate
Am I the only one who thinks “wow this weekend I’m going to start all of my papers and projects and I’m going to start studying and start everything early so I don’t procrastinate” but then it’s the night before it’s due and I’m just sitting trying to finish/learn everything for a test and I completely regret not actually doing my work early so I plan on that productive weekend again, fail, and the cycle continues…
Even though it’s hard, try your best to not procrastinate. Even if it’s as little as writing just the first paragraph of your paper, or studying for 20 minutes every day, every little bit helps. And if I start things way before it’s due, I feel better about myself. So it’s really a win win situation: not be (as) stressed about getting it done on time and feeling good about myself. So stop procrastinating and do your work (after you finish reading this blog post)!
EXTRA: Tips for writing papers
For making the paper look longer I have 2 great tips.
- Change the sizes of periods. This may take some time, but making every period 1-2 number sizes bigger can add a lot of length to your paper. Just make sure you don’t make the period font size too much bigger than the rest of the text, because then it will be obvious that you changed it.
- Change the margin size. I’m sure you’ve already heard this one but I thought I would include just in case you haven’t. Changing the margin size to 1.1 or 1.2 instead of the standard 1″ adds lots of length to your paper. Again, make sure you don’t make the margin size too much bigger, or it will be obvious that you changed it.
For getting a higher word count.
- This is not the easiest thing but you can switch out words for other words. For example switch out ‘like’ with ‘similar to’ — with ‘similar to’ you get 2 words instead of 1, yet it still gets the point across. So just look through your paper to add more words by switching out a word for several words.
- This is probably my favorite paper-writing hack. In white font color, write a bunch of words. This will add more words to your paper for the word count and your teacher won’t be able to see. BUT if the paper is highlighted (with the mouse), the white words can be seen. One way to avoid that is writing the white words in the margin. So you can change the top margin size to 0, then use return/enter key to make the paper look like it has the correct margin size, even though it’s just blank space (@taylor swift). Then in that empty “margin” you can type a bunch of words in white. It is still possible for the teacher to see these words by highlighting them, but a lot less likely than before.
Now that you have read all my tips, it’s time to slay your finals week! I really hope these tips helped you and you find them useful. Feel free to tweet at me or comment below to share some of your finals hacks. Don’t forget to like this post, follow my blog, and tell your friends about my website:))
Thank you for reading!