I am UIC: Surviving the stress of midterm season

open text book with pen and ruler


It’s hard to believe that it’s already the eighth week of the fall semester!  On one hand, this is exciting because that means that autumn is in full swing and with it come sweater weather and colorful leaves. However, on the other hand, this is also the time for midterms. Whether you have all you midterms in one week or  a series of midterm “phases” that are spread out over a period of time, this can be a stressful stage in the semester. However, there are many things that can be used to combat this stress.


  • Planning: Midterm season brings a whole list of assignments, projects, exams, and events that occur at various dates and times. It is a good idea to have a planner or make note of these events to stay on task. You can even plan out how you want breakdown studying over a period of time.
  • Utilize your resources: Part of the stress of midterm season comes from the fear that one will not do well in school. There are many resources on campus that can help you feel prepared for your classes. Going to professor office hours, a tutoring center, or the Writing Center are just some of the options.
  • Take care of your health: Because of all the work that needs to be done, students may find themselves neglecting their health. Exercise is important. Even if you find yourself not having enough time for a full workout, you can still do some simple stretches, go for a walk, or find short exercise or yoga videos online. They can even serve as good breaks from studying. Sleep is also important. Try to plan your time to avoid all-nighters. If you are a napper, try to limit your naps to between 15 and 40 minutes, since anything longer than that can leave you feeling dazed and weak after the nap. In terms of diet, there are some foods that can help your brain in the studying process, such as almonds and avocados. As a tea fanatic, I also recommend drinking tea, especially green tea, for relaxation and for keeping you awake.
  • Other stress-relief techniques: Aromatherapy, especially lavender, or just regular candles can be used to destress. Meditation and deep breathing can help the mind be more in the present moment, which both destresses and allows for more alertness. Playing music in the background, as well as watching something funny during breaks, can help, too.


Good luck during midterm season!

Weronika Jozwiak is a sophomore in the Honors College majoring in English. She enjoys watching animated movies, puns and birdwatching. She is not quite sure what she wants do in the future, but she hope that she will be able to find fulfillment in the little things in life and will be able to drink tea to her heart’s content.

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