Finals. Finally. Everything you need to tie up the semester and chill.

It’s been a year. And you have finals. You’re zoomed out, bored. Wanting to see your friends. Stressed about college apps. Or just stressed for finals and studying turns into scrolling. With a couple weeks left in the semester, it is crunch time to wrap everything up with a little bow. Or a really big bow if you have a lot of things to wrap up. If you’re a senior, you’ve sent off your apps (well most of them) and praying that teacher gets your letter uploaded to your Common App in time. You’ve read your college essay, you’ve set up application portals and are now logging in possibly daily to check your admission status. It’s a lot.

So here’s the deal. At the end of the day when it’s crunch time you have to turn into a prioritizing, strategizing ninja and just get it done. How? Here’s some tips:

  1. Take a look at all of your classes. Which ones are border line? Which ones are harder for you? Make a list of the studying/projects you need to get done to secure a grade or secure more time because you know it’s going to be a pain for you. Prioritize your time. There is no sense in throwing AP Spanish at the end of the day because you think you’ll gain momentum by doing the easy homework first. WRONG. Do the AP Spanish homework first. Just do it. Set a timer, put your phone on airplane mode and focus for a significant amount of time or short bursts.
  2. Check in with your teachers if you need. If you’re waiting on a letter of recommendation then you’ll want to thank your teacher, wish them a happy holidays and then remind them of your deadline.
  3. Reduce as much screen time as you can. Leave your phone in another room. Keep the TV off and designate focused time without distraction. Ask your family for some space for you to focus.
  4. Take a walk, take a break, do something that is NOT scrolling through Tik Tok. Sit in the backyard, take a walk, ride a bike, close your eyes and listen to a good song.
  5. Know that this time will pass! Know that college will happen even if you get a B. Even if you fail a test. You are not defined by your finals. Only if you let it.

So here’s me in the corner championing you on throughout this ridiculously hard year and hard time in your life. Get after it, study, take a break, crush the final, and move on. Because you really do have a lot of great things to look forward to. Promise!

Published by Casey Rowley Barneson

Author of The College Wellness Guide. Beverly Hills High School College Counselor.

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