By: Travis Harvey (Illinois State University)
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It’s midterm time and if you’re like some students I know (cough-myself-cough) you’re scrambling around for Adderall and Red Bull to finish those projects you put off until like a week before they are due. Well, there were good reasons for putting them off. At least they seemed good until now when you look back on it.
Since you have already become a pro at procrastination you won’t mind reading the steps to overcoming the midterm meltdown. There’s a series of 5 steps and procedures to ensure your mental sanity will stay intact as well as your grade. Now find a comfy spot and prepare to dominate those midterms.
- Get ready for Murphy’s Law to kick in– you know Murphy’s Law of “Anything that can go wrong will go wrong”. To combat this, make backups of EVERYTHING, school work, music and photos on your computer, the works. Because if you’re writing a paper your computer will most likely malfunction in some way. Oh, you need the internet? Don’t worry, it’s acting up. Basically have back-up plans for your back-up plans.
- Notes, Notes, Notes– being the great procrastinator that you are, you most likely spent your time in class doodling and watching the hot girl in the corner. Well don’t you worry. Just find a friend who is in the class with you. Explain that you simply ruined your notebook in some sort of freak accident (knowing you it was probably thrown out the window). Whatever you do, return their notes in the condition they were received, and also try to do something nice for the person.
- Study buddies– This is a concept that everyone says works. I think it results in unwanted all-nighters and constant breaks. Unless you have friends who are demanding of silence and concentration, don’t study with them. Try sitting in the same area, but not exactly together and taking a fifteen minute break every hour and a half it cuts down on distractions because you know there is a break waiting for you at the end of the tunnel.
- Don’t deprive yourself of caffeine– coffee and Red Bulls are honestly your best friends at midterm and finals time. So have plenty on-hand or have that be your fifteen minute study break to go get caffeine. Whatever it takes to ace that test.
- Beware the Internet and electronic devices– the Internet, as great as it is, can also be the biggest distraction from studying or writing a paper. Your cell phone is another distraction that needs to be dealt with before tackling whatever project is at hand. Ask your friends not to call or text you until you know you will be done.
Good luck and hopefully you will work your way around the inevitable distractions and problems that usually strike around this time of year. If you haven’t been procrastinating then the change of season is doing a number on your body and you’re probably sick so get that vitamin c and other cold remedies ready.