Monthly Archives: November 2012

Yay! Finals! (Hey, it means you’re almost done!)

Hello everyone, I assume that you are all much too busy studying, scrambling, and completing assignments galore to read this blog post?! Maybe not. Well, we’re almost finished! Only 2 more days of classes. And if this is your first semester at university, you’re in for an interesting experience of finals. Some observations I’ve made that have proven to be helpful: 1. Try out a variety of ways of studying—do you learn best with drawings (try making webs to remember concepts, or timelines for dates), listening? (try recording your voice summarizing your notes on your laptop and replay it), or doing? Study with people (just make sure it is with peers that you can actually study with, and not get distracted by!) and think in terms of examples. Concrete situations will help you recall the theoretical or abstract topics content better when associated with examples.

And finally, you can tell if you know a concept fully only when you are able to teach it someone else. So, teach it! It doesn’t matter if it is a fellow classmate, a roommate, or your dog!

Then, trust yourself. That you’ve studied. That you’re smart. That you’re prepared. Stress hinders us in most situations, including exams. I realize it’s easier said than done, but try to breathe!

And, as always, stay healthy and active to keep you invigorated, and enjoy a little Christmas fun once in a while to get you in the mood for the season, too!


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Posted by on November 30, 2012 in University Success


When Life Gets in the Way

Ok, so this week has been terrible for me in regards to everything not school related. A variety of situations and announcements have made schoolwork the last thing on my mind. So, what now? Frankly, there’s not much we can do. Yes, a semester off, or considering one less class next semester, might be the best option for some situations, but for most of us, we’re not quite ready to consider those options yet. So, how do I cope now, with school and life’s mountains? School is important, yes, but sometimes life is more important. It’s not easy. I’ll tell you that much. And I think each of us handle our setbacks in different ways.

What did I do? Wallow. One day. That’s it. I did nothing for one whole day, but the things that make me happiest—chocolate, Starbucks, books, exercise, Skyping my best friend, watching my favourite tv show, chicken and biscuits for supper, and talking to my mom. One day. I went to bed with the thought, “Tomorrow I’m starting to move forwards.” I’m not saying that it makes the next day much easier, but your attitude affects your attitude. Does that make sense? If I make a commitment to be cheery, it’s much easier to feel cheery! And realistically, I don’t have more than one day to waste.

If there’s something major going on, talk to your profs. Right away. They’re human, too, and most will understand that you may need a couple of extra days to hand that assignment in, especially if you talk to them before that assignment is due! Talk to someone else too—a roommate, a friend, a parent, a counsellor. It doesn’t matter. Just get it out so you can start moving your focus to other things again. If it’s an issue that’s still going to be there over Christmas break, consider shifting your focus away temporarily. You can deal with one thing at a time that way.

I know it’s easier said than done, but try and find a healthy response for you, and be comforted in the fact that you are most certainly not alone.  And if you’re not struggling with anything at the moment, celebrate in your blessings and lend a compassionate ear or hug to those who are. 🙂

Have a good weekend, whether it’s buried in books or taking a much needed break!


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Posted by on November 16, 2012 in University Success


Stick to it!

Ok, everyone, we’re in the final stretch! Yay! If I told you I’m not counting down and listening to carols already, would you believe me? No, I wouldn’t believe me either…

However, in spite of this, it’s more important than ever to be on the ball and not exhausted. How many of you have more than 50% of your marks still left to earn in this last month? Yup, me too. Some classes I have 80% of my marks still left to earn. See what I mean about the whole semester boiling down to NOW, and why we really can’t afford to lose stamina for another month or so?

So, what can we do about it? Quite frankly, I’m going to suggest only two things. And I can almost guarantee they are two things that everyone in your family, and every “healthy lifestyle” magazine has ever told you, and every time you hear them, you roll your eyes.

  1. Exercise. Honestly. It is nearly impossible to drag myself to the gym, but after I do I get so much accomplished that day it’s crazy. I feel happier, I have more concentration, and I just feel better. Even if it’s for 20 minutes, getting your heart rate up will be one the best decisions you can make for your day.
  2. Eat healthy. Maybe this isn’t the case for everyone, but if I have a day full of fast food, salty, or fatty foods, I feel gross, sluggish, cranky, sick, and definitely not ready to conquer an essay. However, taking a 3 minute study break to grab an apple and yogurt from the fridge reinvigorates me and keeps me feeling capable and healthy! Some easy suggestions: carrot sticks, individual yogurts, trail mix, apples, bananas, grapes, or (‘tis the season): CHRISTMAS ORANGES!

I know these are things that you know, but if you’re anything like I was, eating healthy and exercising just seemed like too much work when you’re too busy, but they actually give you more productive work time. Try it! And don’t wait until you’re almost done university to figure it out, like I did..! My goal for this week is to not cancel one workout, and to maintain my eating habits. The fridge is stocked and my runners are out. Challenge accepted. Are you with me?


Posted by on November 8, 2012 in University Success