APU students share their favorite self care tips 

It’s that time of the semester that every college student dreads: finals month. As APU students start preparing themselves with their final projects, papers and exams, they find themselves getting worn out. Most college students deal with this stress in unhealthy ways such as consuming high amounts of energy drinks, pulling all-nighters and waiting until the last minute to get work done. 

For the next three weeks I will be providing some of my best health self-care tips and include fellow APU student opinions on how to nurture your emotional, physical and spiritual well-being to help with finals. 

Plan Ahead of Time

If you’re anything like me, you tend to leave big homework assignments and studying until the last minute. For the longest time, I thought that I would get more work done if I put myself under pressure. However, I now realize that it causes unnecessary stress and a risky potential of the assignment not being done to the best of my ability or turned in on time. That’s why now I make sure to get things done ahead of time, even if it is just doing something as simple as reading the assignment or writing one sentence every day. 

“Making a list of things I want to accomplish keeps me on track,” said sophomore English major Vincent Arellanes. “Knowing what I need to do allows me to effectively organize my time and prevent any unnecessary stress.”  

Be kind to yourself 

I tend to beat myself up a lot during finals. I get upset when I fail a class or don’t get the perfect grade for an exam that I’ve been studying for. Out of everything I mention on this list, this is the one I have to tell myself every day to keep myself from going insane. “No matter what happens, this one thing doesn’t define who I am, and I will get through it,” is a positive affirmation I like to repeat to myself. 

Set Realistic Goals 

Whenever I look at my planner, I tend to get overwhelmed with all the assignments I have to get done. I’ve recently noticed that I put a lot of unrealistic tasks on my daily to-do list. I try to fit everything in one day, so I can get ahead. I wouldn’t recommend this because this will cause anxiety when not everything is crossed off the list. 

“I recently tried to change my habit of trying to get everything done in one sitting,” said sophomore kinesiology major Aleah Delgado, “I realized when I broke my work into sections I became less overwhelmed and more productive.”  

Write Out Your Emotions

Writing has always been my favorite way to  process and release my emotions. Journaling has helped me cope and understand what I am feeling. It’s a healthy way you can express yourself without the worry of being judged. So, if you have a lot of build-up anxiety and worry about finals, let it all out in your journal. 

“Writing helps with letting out all my messy feelings,” said junior graphic design major Cali Cox. “It helps me embrace a safe place where I can grow and be unrefined.”  

Talk to a Friend 

Everyone is going through finals right now, and almost everyone is feeling some distress. Sometimes we think we are alone with our emotions, but we are not. So I make sure that I get some socialization; I enjoy putting off 20 minutes to vent with my roommates about what we are all going through and how we can be there for each other. It has helped me recharge my strength by knowing I have a support system. 

“I’m the type of person who feels more at ease when I have someone else to talk to,” said sophomore allied health major Christina Cajulis. “It helps calm my nerves knowing there is someone I have to help my stress levels go down.” 

Ask for Guidance 

It is okay to ask for help; try talking to your professors or counselor about your feelings. For the longest time, I hated to ask for professional help. I never told my professors what was going on with me, so they never understood why I didn’t turn in work on time or show up for class. Recently, I have opened up to my professors about what I’m dealing with, and they have been so understanding with giving me extensions and make-up work to help with my stress. 

If you want professional help, APU offers counseling. These professionals can help you release any stress you may have during finals. To make an appointment call the counseling number (626) 815-2109.