As the semester draws to a close and the days of your final exams approach, staying focused will be more important than ever. Taking tests is nothing new to you but it seems like every semester, when finals roll around, it’s like the experience is brand new. If you think about it though, you’re at a point in your life – a student in college – so you pretty much have a lot of experience with this thing call test-taking. And if anything, because you’ve taking so many tests up until this point in your academic life, you may as well call yourself an expert at taking tests.
As the end of the semester seems to suddenly arrive, you realize that final exams are pretty much inevitable. So you move forward and decided that you have to do what you have to do. You may decide to make a finals study schedule or you may just wing it and go with the flow. You may decide to make a study outline for each class or you may just go with looking through all of the notes you’ve taken for your classes. You may arrange for study groups or you decided that you’re better off studying on your own. To prepare, you review your notes, go over passages in your highlighter-filled textbooks, and look at past exams. But you ask yourself, are you doing enough to prepare for your final exams? The answer to this question will come soon after you sit down on test day.

So what’s the best thing that you can do to prepare for your finals? The answer is – psych yourself out! A big part of taking tests is preparing yourself mentally. All around you, students are talking about finals and it may seem that there’s no way of avoiding the chatter. Whether your standing on line in the dining hall or waiting for the bus to go from one part of campus to another, there’s no way of getting away from the talk. Don’t let other people’s worries and anxieties about upcoming finals get to you. Be confident that you’ve done all you could do and leave it at that. Because if you begin to build up stress around the thought of your upcoming finals, be sure that it will take a toll on your mentally in one way or another.

Map out a study plan and promise that you’ll reward yourself with something nice once everything is said and done with. Thinking like this is one way to help motivate yourself to hit the books. Spend a moment thinking about how you’ll spend the first few days after your last final is over – this might cheer you up and help you focus a little better once you begin studying for your finals. Just don’t let your finals get the best of you. Finals can do a number on college students and there are a lot of students who buckle and crumble under the pressure – don’t be one of them. Stand up to your finals and show them who’s boss. Don’t let them chew you up and spit you out. Do what you have to do to make it through.

Just know that it will all be over soon and once its over you’ll hopefully be able to pat yourself on the back because you’ve performed well. You’re going to make it through so just gear up and give it your all. Don’t complain about how much you have to do because complaining sure won’t help your situation. Okay how about this, we’ll say that its okay to complain for five minutes only, but once this five minutes is up, its time for you to move on.

You know that what you’re doing is working towards an end goal – getting into medical school. If you have to, remind yourself that hard work does pay off and that this time will too pass. You’ll be so proud of yourself once you make it through, so strap up your boots and give it your all – you’ll look back on these time and be glad you did what you had to do.