How to survive (and thrive!) this spring

Maddie Driggers, Staff Writer

April, in every place in the world except for college campuses, means daffodils, bunnies and pastel colors. However, in Wilmington, North Carolina on the campus of UNCW, April means deadlines, all-nighters and unpredictable thunderstorms.

Usually, for college students, the best part about spring is that summer is right around the corner. But, it doesn’t have to be so bleak and stressful for you this April. Here are some tips for staying positive during this last month of classes!

Get Organized: Most of the time, this piece of advice is offered to students at the beginning of the year. But, as the semester progresses, it’s easy to fall in and out (but, mostly out) of our organizational habits. If you’re feeling stressed and overwhelmed about due dates and exams, set aside some time to plan out your day, week and even the whole month. Pick a routine and planning style that works best for you and stick to it until the end of the semester. Writing down all the tasks you have to do, big and small, will help you better visualize your workload and take it day by day.

Do Some Spring Cleaning: Sometimes, the space around you can really influence your mood and ability to focus. If you’re having troubling studying for that final or writing that 15-page paper, take some time to de-clutter your workspace. Throwing away trash, doing some laundry, making your bed and organizing your desk are all small, quick tasks that make a big difference when it comes to making your study area a space for concentration.

Treat Yourself: Make sure you know your limits and don’t push yourself over them when you’re thinking about getting an extra hour of studying in or attempting to pull an all-nighter to get a paper written. While getting everything done is important, remember that it’s also important to take time away from all that and do something special for yourself! You deserve it, after all. If you’re feeling burnt out or stressed or tired, do something nice for yourself. Take a walk on the beach, get some ice cream with some friends, watch an episode or two of your favorite TV show, soak in a relaxing bath for a few hours or take a refreshing nap. Taking care of yourself during these last few weeks is just as, if not more important, than taking care of your academics.

Find A Creative Outlet: Another way to relax and get away from exams and deadlines for a while is to find a fun, low-stress activity to do when you need a break from studying. Keeping your mind active and engaged while still removing stress from the equation will allow you to stay in the zone without feeling overworked. Some good creative outlets include coloring in a coloring book (which are sold at places like Barnes & Noble and Target), painting on a canvas, drawing, sewing or knitting, crafting with friends or reading a book.

Go Outside: No matter how stressful or laid-back your spring season is this year, don’t forget to have little moments for yourself and take in everything around you. Wilmington has some amazing beauty on display during this time of year, so take advantage of the sights. Leave the library behind for a couple of hours and set up a hammock at the beach or take a walk through Airlie Gardens. It will give you a break from school for little while and allow you to take in the natural beauty of springtime in Wilmington.