How to take care of yourself during midterm season

As we get further into the semester, stress levels are rising and self-care can get put on the back burner. Here are some tips for taking care of yourself when you’re feeling overwhelmed with school.

Number one: Plan ahead. Make yourself a schedule for the week ahead with any midterms, assignments, quizzes or other dates that you need to keep in mind. Also write down if you have any other commitments to work around, like intramurals, society meetings or study groups. Now that you know your schedule, you can make a study plan to make sure you set aside enough time to feel confident in your ability to ace that test!

Number two: Get lots of sleep. Even though you might be tempted to stay up all night before a big midterm, you’ll be much better off getting some shut-eye so your brain can actually function in the morning. Studies show that sleeping solidifies knowledge in your brain, moving it from short-term to long-term memory storage, so you’re more likely to remember what you studied if you get some sleep!

Number three: Get some exercise! It is such a beautiful time of year, with the leaves changing and the crisp chill of autumn in the air. We are so lucky to live here in Sackville where so many things are within walking distance and we have Waterfowl Park to enjoy. You can also take advantage of the newly renovated Fitness Centre or the weight room in the Athletic Centre if you want to get more of a sweat on.

Number four: Eat healthy! Whether you’re on the meal plan at Jennings or you make your own food, it’s important to fuel your mind and body with the proper nutrients that you need to be healthy and successful. Foods like fish and nuts can improve your brain function, and complex carbohydrates give your body energy to help improve your concentration.

Number five: Take study breaks and treat yourself! Sitting in one place at the library is only feasible for short periods of time. Giving your brain a break and stepping away from the books for 10 or 15 minutes every couple hours can actually help you be more productive than if you study for hours and hours without a break. Studying is hard work, so once you’re past the worst of your busy week, take some time to reward yourself. Remember, you deserve it!

If you find the stress of midterms and school in general to be wearing on your mental health, feel free to drop by the Wellness Centre during walk-in hours Monday and Tuesday 1 to 4 p.m. and Thursday 5 to 8 p.m. If you have any other questions about resources available for students, feel free to email me at healthintern@mta.ca. Have a healthy week!

Rachel McDougall
Rachel McDougall is a contributor to the Argosy.