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Finishing the Term Strong

When starting a school session, finishing it seems like nothing more than a technicality. After all, why would you go through the process of signing up and attending classes if you didn’t intend to see it through to completion?

By the time the middle of the term rolls around, however, unforeseen events or an unexpected workload may have you thinking that you can't make it to the finish line. At times like these, you may feel like giving up, but just a few changes in your routine can make the second half of the term feel just like the first.

What’s your plan?

The first thing you need to do is make a plan. By this point in your quest for an online degree, the novelty has worn off of advancing your education and the rest of your responsibilities may seem overwhelming. When school starts to feel like a second job, the simple task of attending classes—even online —may seem like too much to handle.

At this stage, a little organization can go a long way. You have your syllabi and your course schedule, so sit down and plot out the rest of the term on your calendar. Odds are, when you finish and look back over it, you’ll see that the amount of work in front of you is manageable. Planning ahead for major projects or papers will help ensure you get a head start, and can make the rest of the term much easier.

What’s your schedule?

After crafting your plan, schedule a few days on your calendar just for yourself. Set aside at least one day a month when you have nothing else to do, making sure you clear it of any school work. Pushing school work back may seem counterintuitive in your quest for a degree, but in reality, a handful of days with  nothing scheduled will go a long way to helping you feel refreshed and clear-minded.  You will find that you feel much less burdened when you return from your “days off” and much more prepared to tackle the challenges that lie ahead.

What’s on your plate?

With everything else that’s going on, it’s easy to neglect your exercise routine or a healthy diet. While it may seem easier to put healthy habits at the bottom of your agenda, you really should make them a priority. By taking care of your body, you’ll stay refreshed and ready to tackle whatever the rest of the term can throw at you. A balanced diet, complete with fruits and vegetables, and regular moderate exercise, can go a long way in keeping your body healthy and keeping your mind fresh and ready for new challenges.

The reality is that almost everyone hits a speed bump in the middle of each academic term, but by understanding that it is a natural part of the college experience, you have the ability to push through and finish the session strong. A few simple tasks and lifestyle changes will leave you feeling fit, refreshed and ready to tackle anything your online degree program can throw at you.