Five ways to deal with stress during finals week


Graphic by Taya Bunch.

Taya Bunch, Staffer

Finals week is a difficult time for most students, this year is no different. Students are stressed preparing for their upcoming tests and the strain on their mental health causes their extra studying to not be used to their full potential. Excess stress makes it harder to focus and concentrate on what they are learning. Here are a few ways to combat this stress: 

1. Exercise

According to Harvard Medical School, exercise releases endorphins that act as natural mood elevators and help the mind reduce stress hormones. Engaging in physical activity such as walking around the neighborhood also helps increase a person’s overall physical health. Walking around the neighborhood not only helps people get exercise, but they are also outside, which is another good way to relieve tension by releasing stress hormones. 

2. Meditate

Meditation is a good method of clearing people’s thoughts and to relax. According to Mayo Clinic, “during meditation, you focus your attention and eliminate the stream of jumbled thoughts that may be clouding your mind and causing stress,” this allows for a fresh perspective on the things originally causing stress. Meditation guides such as Headspace help beginners talk through how to meditate effectively. 

3. Put on Music

Music can be a very helpful stress reliever as well as a studying method. According to the University of Nevada, a slow tempo song is able to quieten the brain and relax muscles and upbeat music can put people in an optimistic and positive mood. While listening to upbeat music would not be ideal during studying due to the distractions it may cause, slow tempo music helps improve focus and concentration on the task at hand. 

4. Do something creative

According to Dr. Brad Brenner, Therapy Group of NYC creative activities help increase positive emotions, relieve stress and decrease anxiety. Doing a creative activity such as drawing requires full attention, which allows for people to block out other thoughts going on and focus on that one task. This acts as a good way to take a break from studying when it gets too overwhelming and relieve stress as well as enhance one’s creativity. 

5. Keep to a schedule 

A big stressor for some students trying to study is time management, with people devoting too much time to one assignment and not the others as well as keeping track of breaks. A good way to combat this is by keeping a schedule. Schedules allow for people to stay organized, efficient and monitor when it’s time to take a break before they get overwhelmed. According to Verywell Mind, schedules also allow for a sense of control during a stressful situation. 

Finals week is always a stressful time for students, and current events don’t make the situation any better. However, it is important to monitor mental health above all else.