December: The Most Stressful Time of the Year

Olivia Ramos, Staff Writer

   Rather than the holiday spirit infecting the halls this December, the incoming feeling of dread, anxiety, and stress loom over the students of Pines Charter. Everyone begins to anticipate the time crunch between now and December 20th. Midterms are now approaching sooner than expected, and students don’t know how to release some of their tension when it comes to the overlapping test taking. So, here are some tips that could be useful for such a stressful time period in your life!

  • Know How To Pace Yourself

   Many people believe that studying day and night will help absorb the information in your head, especially when it comes to the rigorous workload of AICE or AP classes. It’s important to manage how much time you spend on a subject, especially if you know that certain classes require more studying than others. Work in increments and give yourself rest time, as the brain boosts energy and motivation with purposeful breaks (Cornell Health). Take 10-15 minute breaks, grab a snack, stretch, or do something that will release tension within yourself. “When studying, give yourself breaks. Study for 30 minutes then give yourself a 10 minute break, or a 20 minute break if you study for an hour. Do something engaging while taking those breaks to keep your mind busy but not stressed,” says senior Jamelia Fletcher.

  • Give Yourself Time To Achieve Your Goals

   You can’t pace yourself if you don’t give yourself ample time to study, meaning time management will be your best friend. Start studying 2 weeks beforehand, and take initiative and communicate with your teacher to start reviewing the topics covered throughout the semester. This will create more time to study and rest, creating less headaches, more productivity and make the experience less burdensome. 

  • No More Excuses!

   Excuses are not going to help you pass the midterm, so stop using them. They don’t help with anything, and excuses generate laziness. To create an atmosphere that stops these excuses, you need to understand the way you work. If you like hanging out, then limit the time that you spend going out– you have all year, so you can live through 2 weeks of studying. You have to limit the types of distractions that waste hours of precious time. Your grades reflect your commitment, so don’t let them slip. Scheduling helps with this, especially your sleeping schedule.

  • Go to Sleep!

It is very hard for teenagers to go to sleep on a consistent schedule, especially from time consuming workloads. Before test days, try to make time for sleep. Turn off your phone, stop watching Netflix, and surround yourself with darkness for at least 6 to 8 hours. This will be the hardest thing to do because of piling homework and anxiety, but try to maintain a balance between work and rest. Don’t take long naps; 30 minutes to an hour should keep you energized while also leaving time for you to complete everything. As Principal Bayer says, “Don’t underestimate a good night’s sleep and a good breakfast.” This is called creating habits, which guide us to accomplish stressful things.

  • Studying habits  

   Everyone has different study habits. From visual learning to constant lectures and speeches, people show the same results when finding the perfect study habit for themselves. Try different ways to study, and see which one helps you the most. You might like playing background music while studying, or pretending to be a teacher to absorb the information you’re studying. Understanding your habits while studying will help the time go faster and the material process more clearly in your head. 


    All these tips are to help you and your mental health. Understanding your limits and creating healthy schedules shows amazing results. So, don’t become stressed over tests that reflect class rank, and instead try to focus on improving your study habits for the future.