a student sits at a desk, masked up, doing work on her laptop

Stress tips during finals week

It’s finals week—that time when students suddenly shift into study-hyperdrive in the race toward end-of-semester exams and projects. If the overwhelming number of “to dos” planned for the week and the ongoing performance anxiety is all getting a bit much, you’re not alone. Grayson Kimball, a psychology professor at Northeastern who also works as a mental performance coach, gave [email protected] some tips on how to manage overwhelm and stay on friendly terms with your brain so it can deliver at peak performance.

Don’t focus on the outcome
When a student looks at their upcoming schedule and sees that they have three exams, four papers and two projects due in six days, it can be very overwhelming. That’s because they’re focusing so much on the outcome, rather than on the process. They need to think about how they’re going to break up their studies and projects in a manageable way, and that’s when they can start using some basic goal-setting strategies such as tapping in to your motivation and ditching the idea of perfect.

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Photo by Matthew Modoono/Northeastern University.

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