Hey guys:) It’s Maria! I know Carissa gave you all an update not too long ago but I figured I should give you guys some tips since our exam week starts on Monday *cue sobs*. I have always had testing anxiety so this time of year is one of my least favorites (the other one is final exams in the spring).
So the first thing I always have to do is attempt calmness; yes, it does sound difficult but you just have to go to your happy place. My happy place is imagining myself with my pup curled up next to me with her head in my lap. I know for Carissa it would probably be eating deer jerky at deer camp listening to her One Direction/Taylor Swift playlist (it’s called TayTayOne SwiftDirection). It could be descriptive or simple, all depends on what you want to imagine.
Here are the tips i’ve put together for you guys:)
Exam Information– know where it will be held, at what time, who will be your proctor, and most importantly what time your exam is over. Do not be afraid to talk to your professors; most of them really don’t want you to fail (I said most).
Plan It Out– most professors give study guides or review sheets. LOOK AT THEM. If you need to write down what you should study, then do it.
Schedule– schedule out your time to study. Don’t just start studying the day of the exam. It’s scientifically proven that cramming before an exam does not help you on said exam. Taking a half hour out of your day to just review things can help you (even if it’s two weeks before your exam).
Follow Through– follow through with your plans. Making a list and schedule is all well and good, but you need to make sure you actually complete the goals you have set for yourself.
Study Correctly– don’t just skim the book, take the time to read it and repeat it. Flash cards are a favorite of mine as is teaching the material to a willing friend or relative (aka don’t use Carissa as your student). It’s proven that the best thing to listen to while studying is instrumental music, it can be pop, rock, jazz, classical, hip-hop, R&B, etc etc. My personal favorite is a compilation of Beethoven (love me some Fur Elise) and/or the Nutcracker.
Study Breaks– give yourself permission to take study breaks — actually make sure you take study breaks. Study breaks allow for maximum concentration while also rewarding you for your hard work. Most colleges have “Stress Less” activities to do like making gingerbread houses, snowflake making, doodling, movie night, secret santa, puppy breaks, etc. Do not skip out on these no matter how overwhelmed you are. It is extremely important that you give yourself a break.
Take Care of Yourself– yes, studying and completing assignments are very important, but don’t forget that you still need to sleep (most people who sleep between 6-8 hours a day live longer than people that sleep longer or shorter amounts of times) and to eat healthy food
(not just burgers and fries, Carissa).
Exams DO NOT Define You– remember that exams are very important, but they do not define you nor do they necessarily reflect your learning ability.
Okay those are my study/exam tips! If you have any questions or comments feel free to email us:) Both Carissa and I are wishing you all the best of luck on exams, final projects, research papers, and anything else that could be stressing you out. You aren’t alone, and friends, family, professors, and more are great to rant to. Much love :*
p.s- I made Carissa read my research paper for International Studies and she learned that I am capable of writing essays and sounding intelligent (apparently I sound immature on here :p)
What’s up guys, how are you doing?
If anyone was wondering, Maria did not end up dying from Ebola (because she didn’t have Ebola), and I am still procrastinating. Considering that’s the last you heard of either of us, I figured I’d clear that up.
And because it’s been centuries since our last post, we’re going to let you know what we’ve been up to since the end of October. A nice bullet-point list seems like an effective way to get you all back up to speed. Here we go.
Since you heard of us last:
- We didn’t really do anything for Halloween outside of dressing up like Pink Ladies for a few classes.
- That was also family weekend here, and because my family was unable to make it, I became an unofficial sixth member of Maria’s family. We all ate a lot of food and had a lot of fun.
- November brought with it colder weather, and my parents were kind enough to ship me my Castle jacket (for those of you who don’t know what that is, please Google it; they are not a type of wasp) and some more sweatshirts. Also, my grandma sent Halloween candy for both Maria and I (the Grandma who wanted to speak to Maria on the phone when I first got to Butler and not me).
- We took a trip to the ER at 11pm on a Monday night with our lovely RA because I had an infection where I was previously operated on a few years back. Strictly precaution. All is swell.
- Taylor Swift released her new album 1989, and because I am an avid T-Swizzle fan, I refused to listen to anything else in our dorm room, and by the end of the first week Maria was undoubtedly hooked.
- To add to that, on November 17th One Direction also released an album (FOUR), and guess what that meant for poor Maria? The only thing we were allowed to listen to from that point on was a playlist made up of 1989 and FOUR, and if you were wondering, it is now December 8th and that’s still all we’re listening to.
- Basically Maria has gone full-on Directioner, because she also willingly — WILLINGLY — watched the One Direction movie, This Is Us, and is now very much in love with them. We’ve even planned our double wedding — she will become Mrs. Liam Payne and I will become Mrs. Harry Styles. It’s inevitable.
- November 17th was also our friend Chelsea’s birthday.
- We registered for our classes for next semester, as well. As freshmen, we were last to able to do that, and that meant we basically got leftovers. It was a little difficult to get every class we wanted at all the right times, but in the end I think we both came out with a schedule we’re excited about.
- We had a bit of a dispute, as well. And by dispute I mean an argument that nearly drove Maria to spend the night in a different room (woah, right?). It ended up being a large misunderstanding, and despite two days spent ignoring/avoiding each other, we ended up fine.
- Thanksgiving break finally arrived, and I found that we’re lucky to have the entire week off while other colleges had classes on Monday and Tuesday (sometimes even Wednesday). I went back to Wisconsin for the week with my cousin and her boyfriend who were driving home from North Carolina and swung by to pick me up at 3am, and Maria’s parents picked her up and brought her back to Tennessee. I think it was a much needed break for both of us, not from each other but from college in general. We’ll probably make a post going into detail about each of our breaks.
- When we got back to campus, I brought Christmas decorations with me. We spent that night hanging garland on our walls and snowflakes from our curtain rod, and we attempted to personalize our own stockings but glitter glue was brought into the world by Satan I swear and that didn’t work out very well. Our wall clings didn’t cling, and our window clings didn’t work out because we forgot that we had screens, but we made what we had work. The window clings went on our body-length mirror, and where the wall clings were, we created a Christmas tree of sorts with green twine and used our Taylor Swift 1989 polaroids as the “ornaments.” Easily the coolest thing we did with our room.
- Maria’s mother sent her back with Death by Chocolate, and I can’t properly explain what exactly they are, but basically they are delicious and will probably end up killing me, so thanks a lot Queen Elizabeth.
- Maria isn’t one for Christmas festivities usually, so it sort of surprised me that we got to decorate the room. However, that’s about where she draws the line. While I love Tay Tay and 1D, I have to admit that now that it’s December I am craving my Christmas music. I’ve got a nice long playlist on iTunes that she refuses to let me listen to, but I do fully intend to have her just as hooked on that as she is on Taylor Swift and One Direction (she doesn’t think it’ll happen) (she’s so wrong).
- This past weekend Maria went to her sister’s house for a couple nights, and I didn’t exactly leave my room because I needed to catch up on Supernatural. I did, though, accompany Chelsea yesterday to her old high school’s Holiday Spectacular, and it was absolutely fabulous. I had the best time. Chelsea and her parents were a little dismayed that it wasn’t up to par with previous years, but I was fascinated by the entire thing and can’t wait to go next year. My current Christmas jam, “Underneath the Tree” by Kelly Clarkson, was even performed.
And now that you’re all caught up, we’d like to apologize. Things got a little hectic for a while, but hopefully we’ll be keeping you updated on our journey more frequently again. Finals are quickly approaching, and we’ll be letting you know how that works. I hear that there are going to puppies on campus as a de-stress mechanism, and I know Maria is really looking forward to that.
Until then, take care.
Carissa (and Maria, who has been watching me type this entire post)