Finals week is here, and I think I have just discovered what true stress feels like. It’s not great. I have been, what we in the biz like to call, FREAKING THE *cough* *cough* OUT! Symptoms of stress vary, but for the college student during finals these are most likely:

  • Going to bed at a decent hour, but tossing and turning until that “party” hour has been reached (For me, the interval is about 12:30-2:30 am.)
  • Random spurts of hopeless laughter
  • Looking for cookies after you realize you will never understand that chapter
  • Blaming your study habits on body parts (i.e. “My neck can’t hold my head anymore.”)
  • People talking to you in soft whispers
  • Face spasms
  • Roommate interventions

After my roommate had the guts enough to confront me with, “Lisa, I think it’s time to stop studying: you’re scaring me,” I had an epiphany.  *DING*

“Many first-year college students who earned high grades in high school feel crushed when their marks are only average or…” ( Marsh & others, 2008)


In simpler terms, if you go to school with kids that were all at the top of their classes, chances are you are no longer the smartest kid. Deal with it. ZINGER! This was the one and only meaningful thing I took from my Psychology book that day. You are not dumb, and grades don’t matter in the grand scheme of things.

So, in the mean time do something like this after each hour of studying:

  • DANCE! …like nobody is watching
  • Play some games! (perhaps a little trashcan basketball)
  • WATCH FUNNY VIDEOS…and laugh a lot. Check out dailygrace on YouTube. She SAVED me.
  • Cry on the phone with your sister! (Thanks, Sarah)
  • Take a nap! (I know you were up until at least 3 am.)

For anybody dealing with stress just remember that stress is like a cheating husband’s excuse: It ends now, it never meant anything to me, and we can move past this.

Good luck and, to quote Donnie Brasco, “Forget about it!”

Stress over Finals

By Lisa Navarro