You can get killer grades even through the busiest parts of your school year.
Sure… if you use the usual strategies taught to students, you’re going to have a tough time.
If you use the strategies taught on this blog, these times are going to be your time to shine. It might still get a little exciting but it will be in a good way because you’re prepared.
Finals was one of the times I loved in college because these strategies let me create some amazing results under very unusual circumstances.
I somehow managed to score a top of the class gpa while taking a double course load and working 30 hours a week. (And I biked an hour to school and work in opposite directions but that’s just me bragging.)
I wasn’t able to do this because I’m super smart.
My early high school grades put me in the bottom half of my class. (Pretty much the only kids scoring lower than me didn’t even show up.)
My results came from strategy. That’s why you need to learn this stuff.
Now think about finals time when you’re taking a double course load… This was all strategy.
Once you learn it, you’re going to feel great while achieving your goals.
Cycle Crushing It And Having Fun
The first thing you should keep in mind is this:
You shouldn’t treat your whole academic year like finals time.
It shouldn’t be anything like any other time of year because it’s not. All your teachers are giving you their most important assignments. They’re throwing their big projects and essays at you. Then they’re giving you a big ugly test.
They’re all doing this at the same time as every other teacher.
It should feel a little different because it is different.
You should spend more time working on school during this time of year.
(Or in the case of most students I work with: you should spend less time working on school through the weeks prior to finals.)
Relax! You Won’t Have Time To Do It Later
Manage your stress levels throughout the school year.
People can’t manage high levels of stress through long periods of time. It’s just not natural. It leads to problems. One of those big problems is burnout.
You don’t want to burnout during finals.
That’s the death of good grades for the school year. It’s better to lose a few unimportant points earlier in the year than to risk the important points later in the year.
There is a time to be stressed out and there is a time to chill out.
If you don’t do enough chilling out then you’re going to be much more susceptible to burnout. Burnout is unpredictable and uncontrollable. Consciously relaxing allows you to pick your moments.
Don’t Study This!
Finals are the perfect time to stop studying for certain classes.
Do you really need to keep studying for that class you’ve been getting an A in all year?
Maybe… but if you have a class you’re averaging a C in then you probably need to focus on that.
Are you risking failing any classes?
If so, then those are the classes you need to dedicate most of your energy towards.
Remember to use the syllabus busting strategies this blog is always going over to verify you know what assignments are valuable and which are just wasting your time.
If you’re not going to fail any classes and are just looking to maximize your final grade then you also need to focus on these same strategies.
You may not have time to finish every assignment. You should skip those low value assignments.
If you do have enough time, you might have to rush some of them. You should rush those low value assignments because they’ll impact your grade least.
Most importantly, you need to know which assignments you should focus your energy on. Get those high value assignments double and triple checked.
Assume The Collapse Of The World Around You
Whenever you get an assignment during finals time, you should be treating it like it’s due next class.
(If it’s a huge assignment then you can assume it’s due in a couple classes.)
The worst part about finals is the unknowns that get thrown at you.
When you have a big assignment in one class, it can be tempting to put it off.
This can be a smart strategy during most of the year. It gives you more time to think about it and plan your work out. By the time you do it, you can know exactly what you need to do.
During finals time, this strategy can get risky.
You never know when a teacher is going to throw another assignment at you because they’re all looking to clear their plan off.
(Teachers don’t like falling behind in the year. They’re going to try to finish every assignment in their class plan. That means they can end up throwing you extra assignments late in the class to catch up.)
If you plan to do an assignment a week from now, you’re making the assumption your schedule will be open enough to do it a week from now.
If another teacher suddenly drops a time killer assignment on your desk during that week of waiting, your going to lose some of that time. If two or three teachers do this then you might have to make some difficult decisions.
Finals time is the time to try and stay ahead.
Fall into the rut of being a responsible student.
You can go back to your mindful procrastination during the quieter periods.
This is the time for getting stuff done.
Finals time is the hardest time of the year. It’s the culmination of all the challenges you’ve faced but it doesn’t have to be your downfall.
It can be a time to struggle or it can be a time to thrive.
By practicing the strategies this blog teaches, you’ll be able to put yourself in such a comfortable position that finals will actually feel good. (It’s a Zeigarnik relief. The stuff you’re worrying about all year concludes and you’re happy with the result.)
You can look at what you did (and your ridiculously high grades) and realize how much you kick-ass.
Aaron Richardson took his grades from fighting F’s to Easy A’s. In the process, he read over 300 books on personal development. Today he’s founded 2 blogs on studying including Smart Student Secrets. He’s written 3 books on the subject. His work has been featured on some of the biggest news, psychology, and student sites on the internet.