How to stay focused with a case of summer fever

Staring out the window is hard not to do when it is a beautiful day in San Diego.

Mallory Graber

Staring out the window is hard not to do when it is a beautiful day in San Diego.

Mallory Graber, Staff Writer

It is that time of year, that awkward period between spring break and finals. This is the hardest time of the year to stay motivated because the weather feels like summer, the air smells like summer, but the reality is that it is not yet summer.

Everyone is ready to mentally check out of school because spring break was way too short, and students are not ready to trade in their sunscreen for their textbooks yet. The truth is, it is not difficult to focus during the last week of school because everyone is in panic mode. During finals, students can see the bright light of summer close enough to touch, and this motivates them through their studies.

A few more weeks of school feels dreadfully long, and it might seem like crunch time is not here yet. However, cracking down now will ultimately allow finals to arrive without the reoccurring miniature heart attack that comes with every due date. In a place like San Diego with palm trees on every corner, summer fever might be the most contagious thing out there. Do not pull out the swimsuits just yet! It is time to get it together so that finals week does not launch everyone into a sleepless, caffeine-overdosed pit of anxiety.

Making a list of all the assignments that need to be done is a good habit to develop. Lists help organize thoughts so that actions can follow. The satisfaction of crossing everything off of a to-do list is worth the effort of making the list in the first place. Make a list of tasks to accomplish for the day and then a second for the weekly tasks to accomplish. This will help prioritize things while also making it harder to accidentally forget them.

The saying “slow and steady wins the race” can be applied to academics as well because it is best to start studying as soon as possible. Studying a little bit every single day will implant information into your long-term memory much more efficiently than cramming loads of information all at once. Wouldn’t it be wonderful for finals to come around and you already feel at least halfway prepared? Study now while there is time.

There are obviously a million things that students would rather do than study. Instead of being distracted by parties and playtimes, get in the habit of prioritizing school work, and use those fun activities as a reward. It will be so much more relaxing to go out and have a great time without an unfinished school assignment lurking in the back of your mind. Fun activities can be used as inspiration to power through those boring school projects. A special purchase or delicious food can also be used as a personal reward for finishing assignments. Study first, and then indulge in your wants because this time, you have earned it!

When the school assignments start piling up, take a moment to think hard about what the ultimate goal is. Why are you going to school? Why are you taking these classes? It could be to transfer to the school of your dreams or to graduate with an associate’s degree. Those accomplishments will then extend themselves to help you support a family someday, or buy a car, or whatever it is that life has in store. Thinking about the future increases motivation because it puts everything in perspective. You might hate the class you are in right now, but just remember that it is simply a temporary obstacle toward a long-term goal. School can be a lot to handle sometimes, but take it one step at a time and it will be worth it in the end. Hang in there! Sweet, sweet summertime is almost here.