Finals are coming. Ten weeks have flown by and there is no turning back now. You are either feeling confident or freaking out about that final looming over you like a medieval executioner, ready to slay your GPA. You could be one of the few star students who finished studying last week and have color-coded flashcards that you’ve reviewed four times already.
Regardless of your particular preparedness level, no one can deny the allure of a well-deserved break. Keep your eye on the prize. Here are five things you can promise yourself for having survived finals week.
Let’s be real, you haven’t been getting much of it. Sleep deprivation a rite of passage in college, pushing yourself to the point of utter exhaustion in order to cram in as much information as possible before the big test.
Sure, you’ve been told to study weekly over the course of the term, but something always gets in the way. Like attending that concert in Portland you’ve been waiting for all year (totally worth it). Or maybe you had to care for a sick kid, or yourself, putting you a week behind. Either way, you’ve got some catching up to do. You look back to start of term when you were bright-eyed and well rested — a memory far too distant given the actual passage of time.
Think of how glorious it will feel once you’ve taken your last final and you can sleep for three days straight. Surely that makes up for all the stimulant-fueled, sleepless nights leading up it, right?
Speaking of stimulants…
4. Enjoying coffee again
It’s a wonder how anyone gets anything done without the wonder-drug that is caffeine. Plenty of people do, but it’s no secret that coffee is the stimulant of choice among most college students. It’s easily available both on and off campus, it’s effective and even free on Wednesdays (thanks, Snack Shack). Even the most dedicated coffee connoisseur realizes at some point during the term that caffeine has become a requirement to function, instead of a savored luxury — especially for those 8 a.m. classes.
You may have rejoiced when the pumpkin spice latte returned to café menus, only to start wishing this week that intravenous caffeine drips were actually a thing. Just be glad you are one of the 66-percent that would choose not to use Adderall to get through the finals season, according to a surprising stat from the National Institute of Health. You can feel better about your coffee addiction as it may actually reduce your risk of death by ten-percent, which is nothing to sneeze at. The NIH makes it clear that the link between coffee and lower death rates is not a direct causal relationship, but reassurance is necessary after the fourth cup of joe you down to finish that group project.
3. Guilt-free Netflix binges
After you’ve recovered from a three-day hibernation and have returned to a reasonable level of caffeination, you’re finally ready to binge watch Master of None on Netflix — or rewatch if your willpower failed and you streamed instead of studied. Maybe Marvel’s Jessica Jones is more your style. Either way, binge watching TV shows is a past-time 61-percent of us enjoy, according to a Netflix-sponsored survey.
Stress-watching TV shows instead of studying this week will not help you on that Chemistry test, no matter how much Breaking Bad you watch. Add on the guilt you’ll feel going into that final totally unprepared and you’ve got a recipe for a mental breakdown.
Just say no to Netflix, until next week. Trust me, you won’t regret the feeling of a guilt-free TV show binge … unless your friends spoil the ending first, but that speaks more to your choice in friends.
2. Saying “Hello” to life again
If you haven’t been living under a rock this past month — despite how much easier that would make it to not compulsively stream Orange is the New Black for the third time — you’ve at least heard of Adele’s newest hit “Hello”. It’s been spoofed by Saturday Night Live as “A Thanksgiving Miracle,” and will perfectly sum up your emotional state after finishing that last final.
Because you made it! Finals are over and you made it to the other side, and you’re sorry for making the past couple weeks so hard on yourself.
Then you remember that Christmas is just around the corner, which means…
The ultimate reward. Especially while streaming A Very Murray Christmas and sipping a gingerbread latte.
Keep your eyes on the prize, and muscle through finals week. It’s better on the other side.