Seven Ways to Survive an Overload Credit Semester

By: Tyler Farr

I may be insane for overloading, but if I want to graduate in May of next year, sacrifices have to be made. This would be my sanity and my free time for the next two semesters. Between my six classes, soccer activities/workouts, and two jobs, I have to balance a lot. Twenty credits into the semester, I’ve come up with some tips to help me get through the sleepless nights and panic attacks.

1)      Space it out: Have to read a novel in a week? Break it down and be diligent. Whether it be 20 pages a day or 50, if you are sure that you do your part every day the load won’t become daunting the day before class. Like the book I have to read tomorrow…

2)      Set realistic goals: I would love to get straight A’s, but I know that most likely it won’t happen. I am going to aim for the best that I think I can do, and then adjust my standards as the semester goes on. As much as I would love another boost to my GPA, this semester is not about perfection.

3)      Have fun: Whether this be reading a good book or going out with friends, this is the key to your sanity. You will not be productive if you are brain dead, and your friends will not love you for neglecting them for four months. Do not say no to every invitation to go out, and take a break every once in a while.

4)      Exercise: I get plenty of this from my soccer workouts, but take a break and get your blood flowing. The endorphins will make you happier, and you will feel better. Morning workouts or yoga are the best because it gets your metabolism running and wakes you up without caffeine. This could be just a walk around campus, weight lifting, or even a Zumba session. You can study on the elliptical too, if you are skilled enough.

5)      Keep your favorite snack food on hand: For me it’s cosmic brownies, and the chocolate indulgence has saved me more than once from a breakdown. Do yourself the favor and make sure you have a good stock. While it is not always the healthiest solution, it sure makes you feel better.

6)      Spend time with God: For me it’s my nightly Bible reading. He will provide comfort and support when you feel overwhelmed.

7)      Minimize distractions: I have sacrificed my Netflix account and try my best to stay off of Hulu. Yes, Pinterest, Facebook, Tumblr, etc., are there just waiting for me to log on. I just have to stay away and do my best to stop myself from the hour long Facebook breaks. If you have a huge paper due, have your friend change all of your passwords. It sucks, but it is necessary.

I often fail at these tips, but I am making progress. So if you have to make the commitment to a semester that will make you want to pull your hair out, this is my suggested best practice. Good luck and happy studying. Don’t worry, your hair will grow back.

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