Advice Letter to a Stressed Out Student

Macmillan Employee
Macmillan Employee
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A message from those who made it.


Dear Stressed Out Student,

I am writing to you today to help you get through that point in every semester when it seems that all your professors plot together to give you an exam, project, and assignments due in the same week in every single class. Luckily, there are some ways to prevent getting overly stressed out during this inevitable week of pure horror.


Using an app like myHomework Student Planner will help you organize all scheduled assignments and exams. Organizing tasks most likely will help you feel like your workload is under-control and less stressful to think about.


My advice is to prioritize all the big-ticket items first (term papers, group projects, final exam prep) and leave the small-valued assignments to the end. Prioritizing helps remove the need to rush to finish something that has a heavy weight on your final grade by devoting your time and energy to the more important tasks.

Plan Ahead

Busy the weekend before a big exam? Plan ahead some time to study before your weekend plans so you aren't cramming the night before. Space out your study time over the course of a week to allow a proper understanding of the material.

Allow yourself breaks

Taking breaks from any task is valuable in retaining focus, as found in a 2008 study on retention rates. Giving yourself 15 to 30 minutes breaks will help you stay focused for longer periods of time. Use this time to eat, nap, or exercise to free your mind.

Don't overstudy

You may feel the need to overstudy but it could have negative effects on your studying ability. Overstudying can cause you to easily lose focus, increase in anxiety, and the inability to sleep due to an overactive brain from stress. Once you feel like you have a deep understanding of the topic, stop studying, and take a break.

Don't procrastinate

Not procrastinating is easier said than done, but it's the easiest way to prevent stress. Give yourself personal deadlines of when you want something due and then reward yourself with candy, take-out, or an extended nap.

It took me 3 full academic years and a few sleepless nights to figure out that not leaving all papers and tests to the day before is an effective way to do well in college. Don't be like me; start being productive early to get into the right kind of habits.


The Ones Who Barely Made It Out Alive

rebecca-connolly-cq-authors-community-headshot.pngWRITTEN BY
Rebecca Connolly
Hofstra University

Rebecca is a senior marketing major at Hofstra University. Originally from Colchester, Connecticut, she loves exploring New York City and finding all the best food. You can usually find her anywhere that serves pizza, buffalo wings, or chocolate milkshakes while panicking over her post-graduation future.