After weeks and weeks of hard work, it’s that time of the quarter when you only have one project left — your final project, which can make the difference between a B and an A. To make things even worse, all of your final projects are due at the same time because that’s just how it’s done. So it’s crunch time, which means lots of stress, sleepless nights and a whole lot of caffeine.
Here are a few things to keep in mind during the final stretch of the quarter to help you survive:
Get some sleep.
No matter how much work you have, how many sketchbooks you need to turn in, or even if you have your entire color theory project left, it’s very important to space things out well enough to get some quality sleep. The National Sleep Foundations recommends seven to nine hours of sleep a night for young adults. An all-nighter is one of the worst things for you during finals week because you need sleep to keep your body functioning. Without it, your mind, memory and mood are all affected. Use your time management skills to get enough sleep and maximize your productivity.
Yes, food is a priority. During finals week people tend to skip meals and work through regular meal times. If you spare just 20 minutes to go on a grub run, your workflow could become much more productive. However, quick calories such as fast food will leave you exhausted. Keep some granola or cereal handy so that you have something to help fuel you, or get something from the school cafeteria that can keep you going for a good 3-4 hours. Avoid excessive sugar at this point, as this tends to leave us even hungrier as the sugar rush dies down. We also tend to feel more tired once the sugar is out of our system. Stay away from carbonated energy drinks and Frappuccinos.
Switch between projects.
If you have three submissions in one week, it means a heavy workload for the weekend before. Sometimes it can be effective to plan your work process in such a way that you focus on one project for a portion of time and then switch to another to vary the experience. That can help clear your mind and get a new perspective on things. As art students, it’s important to pause at intervals and take a step back to look at what’s happening from a distance. Ask for critique from friends to get an opinion or suggestions for your work.
Put your phone on mute.
Getting distracted is very easy. While it is true that “all work and no play” makes any student dull, spending too much time with our phone can lead to fatigue and a lack of productivity. It is best to keep our phones and social media platforms on mute so as to avoid minute-by-minute notifications. This will help us get our work done faster and better.
A strong finals performance may not be as hard as it sounds. With the nerves set aside and the right mindset, we can all get through this. Before you know it, it’ll be done. You’ll be able to pat yourself on the back, not feel guilty and enjoy the summer. Good luck Bees!