Winter break is almost here–you know what that means…finals szn! It’s been a fun first semester but now it’s time to buckle down and get serious. If you play your cards right, you can even end the semester on a totally different note. Of course, finals week gets a bad rep for the seemingly inevitable tears and anxiety attacks it causes. However, what if I told you that taking 5 tests over the span of 3 days is totally manageable?! Follow the tips below and you’re guaranteed to crush your finals!

Make a study schedule and stick to it. Set realistic goals!

Not only is this SO easy to do, but it is also crucial to any successes you want to have over the course of finals week. Do yourself a favor and sit down alone for 30 minutes max. What I usually do is I write down all of the subjects that I need to cover and the different topics within them. Assign a day to each topic, even if the topics span multiple subjects. In fact, it is actually better to spread out your studying for each class and to cover smaller sections of multiple subjects each day. Don’t overdo it—if you know that it’s not realistic for you to cover 5 chapters a day for all 4 of your finals, don’t set yourself up for failure. Be honest with yourself and I promise that you can cover everything. The earlier you start planning, the more effective this will be!

Don’t lock yourself in Howie T for hours on end

Come on, you know better. Howie T is great and all, but for 12 hours straight? Absolutely not. After a couple of hours, get up, take a little bit of a break and find a change of scenery. Your mind and body will thank you later.

Set aside some time for yourself everyday

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When finals are en route, it is hard to prioritize anything but study time. However, you should keep in mind that you will perform your best if you feel your best. With that being said, it’s important to fit some “me time” into your schedule. Whether that be through taking a run in Audubon or watching an episode of Stranger Things, remember to prioritize yourself, even just for a little bit.

Don’t overload on unhealthy food

The food that we eat is what fuels our bodies, right? With this being said, wouldn’t we want to fuel up on filling and nutritious foods? As tempting as it might be, don’t Postmates Pizza Hut to the library at midnight and don’t overdo it at Bruff with tons of waffles and ice cream. Instead, eat balanced meals that will keep you full. You will focus so much better while you’re studying!

Make sure to get enough sleep

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I can’t stress this enough. At least 8 hours a night! Just like no one ever retains information that they learn at 3am the night before an exam, no one will retain information while running on zero hours of sleep. It’s just not possible. Getting enough sleep is more than achievable as long as you plan ahead.

Keep in mind that you can do this

You got this! You’re capable and smart and you wouldn’t be here otherwise. Watch some motivational videos on Youtube or google some ~inspirational~ quotes—whatever it takes to get the job done. Sometimes all we need is a pep-talk.

Remember why you are here!

As cheesy as this sounds, we have to remember why we are here. Some of us want to become kick-ass surgeons while others dream of becoming successful business people. Whatever your long-term goals are, keep them in mind! Doing well and caring about your finals is the first step in reaching your goals.

Good luck everyone! Stay calm!

COVER PHOTO: Local NOLA artist, Cleo Wade. Check out more of her work here: @cleowade

Have other Finals Szn tips? Let us know in the comments!

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