At this time of year, pretty huge demands are made of college students. You’re kept more than busy with the end-of-semester workload your instructors give you – exams, papers, final projects all due within weeks of each other, not to mention keeping up with regular readings for class (sometimes more than you’re used to as instructors race to finish the textbook before classes end).
If you’re a continuing student planning to return to school in the fall, you’re also forced to think and plan for next year’s classes – worrying about registration and getting into the classes you need and want. You’re also beginning to feel the pressure of finding a summer job that will pay decently and hopefully look good on the resume.
If you’re graduating, you’re trying to fit in all the grad parties and events that are scheduled while wondering about your future career or next step in life.
It can get to be a wee bit much. You know the next few weeks are going to be intense, and chances are, you’re going to be pushing yourself pretty hard to get everything done. The pressure is on.
Instead of spending the last of your student loan on a year’s supply of energy drinks that you plan to consume in the next month, here are a couple of easy things you can try instead – none of which take much money, time, or planning.
1. Cat Nap
It’s tempting to put down a textbook and fall asleep for six or seven hours in the late afternoon, but the best naps are short (between 10 and 30 minutes). They won’t leave you feeling groggy, and they won’t mess up your sleep cycle at night (assuming you still have one). They’re just enough to give your body time to re-energize.
2. Hang Out
Being around people can really up the collective energy level. It might not be possible or wise to go out with friends every night at this time of year, but taking a little break now and then from studying and writing papers to interact with other human beings can help push up energy levels and restore perspective when needed.
Whenever you can, listen to music – whatever kind of music you like. Music raises energy and reduces tension at the same time.
4. Follow your energy cycle
Take a few minutes to think about when you have the most energy during the day. It may be that 9:30 p.m. to 3 a.m. is actually NOT that time. If you tend to have more energy and focus in the morning, try to get a lot of work done in the morning. If you really are a night owl, go with it. Just try to figure out when your energy levels are highest, and plan to do as much as you can during those times.
5. Quit being a couch potato
Studying, writing papers, and going to class involves a lot of sitting in one place for a lot of time, which is a huge energy drain. Moving around and getting exercise is one of the most effective ways to boost your energy levels. If you don’t have a ton of time to devote to exercise, just try to get bits and pieces of it into the day. Taking a ten or fifteen minute walk a couple of times a day can be very effective. You might not feel more energy instantly afterwards, but be patient. See how your energy levels will stay higher over time.