Those Last Couple of Weeks: Making It Until the Holidays
Don't get frustrated during the last stretch of the semester--remind yourself that you only have a few short weeks until your much needed winter break!
December 06, 2012
For those who are about to take finals, we salute you. The few weeks between Thanksgiving break and the heavenly month-long winter break seem to be some of the most stressful of the college school year.
The eight days I spent at home for Thanksgiving was the longest period of time I had been there since summer, and, as much as I love my college, getting back into the swing of things was rough. There were a few days last week when I really struggled—I was stressed, tired, missing my cats, my family, and my boyfriend (not necessarily in that order), and overwhelmed by the work that I had handled so well just two weeks prior. After a while, though, I adjusted.
I’m more than ready to return home for the holidays, but I think I can make it through the next couple of weeks. If you don’t hear from me in January, you’ll know that I’ve been buried under a pile of essays, am hibernating, and won’t come out until spring.
The best strategy I’ve used for getting through the past week and a half has been to just stay in the moment. Don’t worry about what happened last week or what will happen next week; keep yourself centered.
My agenda has been the perfect partner in crime—every day, I write down a list of assignments I want to do that day. Even if I only remind myself to “work on” something, I know that I’ll get at least a little bit done on that particular assignment. This has saved me a lot of late nights working on stuff due the next day.
I also like to write down even the most obvious of things just so I can check them off. Because I’m a compulsive gold-star-striver (it’s almost pathological), I find that being able to draw a line through something means that I’ll feel truly accomplished, even if it’s something that I probably didn’t need to be prompted to do.
I have also been sticking to my routine, despite the craziness that has been this week. I eat lunch and dinner at the same time as I do on any other day, I go to the gym like I have been all semester, and I go to bed at about the same time every night (see above paragraph). Although it requires a little extra effort in the realm of staying on top of things, it’s worth it to feel a little bit more like a human being at the end of the week.
Making a mental list of everything that I’m looking forward to doing over break, like watch old Christmas movies (Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, anyone?) with my little brother and making all our usual treats with my mom, has helped me with my pre-break blues. I have a plan for what I know that I’ll do and will enjoy doing.
The last stretch of the semester is a bumpy ride, especially if, like me, you’re a freshman and still getting used to college. But you, too, will survive! Just keep reminding yourself that in a few short weeks, you’ll be done with finals, papers, and will finally be enjoying that much-needed post-semester break.
What do you look most forward to doing during your winter break?