Stress free finals week

As the 2014-2015 school year begins to wind down, students all across St. Kate’s are getting ready to start studying for finals. One common problem during finals is the stress that arises from the tests themselves.

Colleges and universities across America are acknowledging that this overwhelming amount of stress does exist and are trying to find ways to combat it. One common way of dealing with this problem is offering therapy dogs for students to pet before and during finals week. Though it is not known exactly where this practice originated, it has been found to be highly successful in lowering stress rate in students.

St. Kate’s is just one of  many universities to offer therapy dogs during finals week. St. Kate’s also offers students free counseling sessions at the university’s counseling center. Residence Life is also planning activities for finals week for students to come, have a good time and blow off some stress before going back to studying.

While St. Kate’s does offer many different ways for students to deal with stress, students still find different techniques to deal with their own personal stress during finals. Nicole Szyszka ’17, Jen Garness ’17 and Skyla Thiel ’18 are such students.

“I always make sure that I have at least one free day during finals week to just procrastinate and relax. After that it’s back to the grindstone,” Szyszka said.
Szyszka also plans her studying habits to be as stress free as possible. To do so, she plans a study schedule for each final.

“I start studying for a final three days in advance, starting with pretty easy stuff, like terms I’m already familiar with. Over the next few days, I start adding more and more terms that I’m not familiar with.” Szyszka said.

“I also make sure to eat every day, because forgetting to eat just adds to the stress of studying,” Szyszka said.

In addition, Garness finds that meditating is also great way to deal with stress.

“Meditating has always helped me relax and over the years I’ve found many different meditation techniques that are really helpful in reducing stress,” Garness said.

Another trick that Garness has found reduces stress is to create a ‘finals study guide’ for each class at the very beginning of the semester and add to it as the semester continues.

“That way you don’t have to worry about if you have the right notes or if you can’t find them. All your notes are already there and studying becomes super easy,” Garness said.

As for Thiel, she finds that just jamming out to music in her room helps to not only relieve her own stress from finals, but also her roommates’ stress.

“I’ll just turn on the radio in the room and start dancing pretty wildly,” Thiel said. “At first it bugs my roommates a lot because they like the room to be quiet when studying. However my dance moves can get pretty ridiculous, so that soon my roommates are falling over with laughter. It helps relieve the stress and tension finals week can cause.”

Though there are many different ways to relieve stress, the most important thing to remember about finals week is that it really is only a week and soon, at the end, everyone gets a nice three month break. Good luck.

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