Tips and Pointers for a Stress-Free Spring Semester
By Uzma Issa, GirlSpring Springboarder
It’s that time of the year again!
It’s the time people enjoyed the winter break, it’s a new year, and school comes creeping from around the corner. People finished their midterm exams and the second semester is about to start. I don’t know about you, but I struggled with the first semester, one main issue is the problem of time management. Everyone procrastinates on assignments, putting it off until the last minute. So how can we improve our time management skills for the new year?
I’ve had the problem of procrastinating, not wanting to do work in the moment, and pushing off assignments to finish later.
This causes problems because I end up pushing too many assignments to finish later not giving me enough time to finish. I’ll end up staying up late or doing my homework the morning it is due.
I have gotten better at completing assignments on time and this is how:
Look at all the homework you have and evaluate how much time it will take and the difficulty of it.
Create a schedule for yourself.
In the schedule, vary the difficulty of assignments so you don’t have to do 2 hard or time-consuming assignments back-to-back.
Include breaks to eat, use the bathroom, or leisure.
Try to include a bedtime. So if you end up not being able to finish your homework in time, you cannot stay up late. Sleep is vital to our health.
Stick to the schedule. If you finish something faster than you anticipated, then you may do other things or get a head start on your other assignments.
One thing to keep in mind is that everyone needs sleep.
As kids or teenagers, our brains are still developing; they need sleep to function properly the next day. If one goes to sleep extremely late in the night trying to finish homework for a class the next day, that person most probably will not be able to stay alert and retain the information taught in class because of their fatigue. Nationwide Children’s claims that on average, teenagers get around 7 hours of sleep, but need about 9 hours of sleep.
Here are a few ways you can get the sleep you need:
Maintain a regular sleep schedule, sleep and wake up at around the same time every day.
Try not to oversleep on the weekends. It may seem beneficial, but it will be harder to get back into your sleep schedule for the weekdays.
Take short, early afternoon naps. They are quick but will energize you to do work later on.
Limit screen time before bed.
Try to minimize screens or Bluetooth devices in your bedroom.
Cut out caffeine.
An additional note to realize is that our phones are huge distractions.
We may not realize it, but many people use their phones more than they realize. Many people probably know this, but on the new iPhone update, there is a feature in Settings where you can track your screen time, notifications, pick-ups, and more. There is also an option to keep limits on apps you use a lot. So, I recommend setting a time limit on your phone so you can concentrate on other goals and be less distracted. Also, set a bedtime on your phone, so you don’t use your phone after a certain time, allowing you to get better sleep. Some people use their phone as a stress reliever, but it’s not the best option.
People should partake in different stress-relieving activities such as drawing, coloring, knitting, creating something, cooking, or exercising that helps them take their mind off of stressful ideas.
During breaks, you take from assignments, or after a stressful day, you should take some time out for yourself to do something you enjoy doing. Self-care is an important part of life and you should not spend the whole day overworking yourself but to take time out to take care of yourself. If you have lots of assignments to do or work to catch up on, do not try to do everything all at once, non-stop. Take breaks to energize yourself and do something you enjoy – then work some more.
Overall, these are a few things that might be helpful for the second semester of this school year, or life in the future.
I know some of these tips helped me and I am still trying to improve my time management. Good luck to everyone in school and I hope you found this article helpful!