Ryan Carey-Mahoney: How to survive the final weeks of this semester

Ryan Carey-Mahoney
Media Credit: Hatchet File Photo
Ryan Carey-Mahoney

Lace up your sneakers; the finish line is in sight.

That’s right. If semesters were marathons, we would be in the final stretch.

But before you get too excited for long beach days and a nice tan, remember these final weeks are what count the most, so drop the shot glass and end the premature celebration – it is time to get to work.

Now, as a procrastinator oscillating between relapse and recovery, I understand the temptations of slacking off. Extra hours of sleep, more free time for activities, Tuesday Boozeday; I have experienced them all. And then I get my grades back.

Trust me, it is never pretty.

So for this column only, think of me as your Mr. Miyagi, and I will help prepare you for the grueling weeks ahead. If you follow my tricks of the trade, you might just be able to turn your semester of slacking around.

First of all, stop pressing the snooze button, and get to class. I promise you will learn something valuable.

After that, log out of Facebook. As interesting as your ex’s new profile pictures are, they are a distraction. She already broke your heart. Do not let her break your focus, too.

Find a study partner for your exams, or get someone to edit your paper. That is, unless your professor gives you extra credit for consulting the gurus over at the University Writing Center for more professional editing. In that case, run to the University Writing Center and let a tutor rip your work to shreds. Sensitive as you might be to criticism, those five extra points are worth it.

But the most daunting task of all is overcoming the insurmountable challenge that is procrastination. Whether it is a Beyoncé song, your sorority’s party or a delicious meal from a food truck, find some ultimate objective that will keep the procrastination at bay. Always look for new ways to inspire yourself, and once you find your muse, do not let her go.

And finally, do not – I repeat do not – step foot into Gelman Library (unless you're going to the Writing Center). During finals, the library turns into more of a social hot spot than a place to study, and you can’t afford such a distraction with that political science paper due tomorrow.

During your time here, studying is your main responsibility. And while it is not a typical nine-to-five job, the rewards are far greater than any paycheck.

The marathon isn't over. Don't let yourself burn out yet.

Ryan Carey-Mahoney, a sophomore majoring in journalism, is a Hatchet columnist.

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