How to take care of yourself during exam and deadline season

This weeks blog post comes from Tara Kaby who has been working in property law for the past five years. Tara’s blog post shares some tips on taking care of yourself during exam and deadline season.


Exams and deadlines are one of the most stressful periods that students go through. It is easy to become so focused on revision and writing essays that we often forget to look after ourselves. 

Below are a couple of tips to keep in mind as you approach deadlines and exam seasons in your studies, on how to look after yourself and still achieve your study goals.

1. Take a break

Taking regular breaks is the one important aspect that we all seem to fail at every time. We get so caught up in cramming information and studying or writing for hours upon hours that we forget that we need to take a break. 

It is suggested that we should be taking a 5 to 15 minute break every hour, or a 30 minute break every 2-4 hours. Taking regular breaks helps our brains to retain information and can help to maintain productivity. If you don’t take breaks, your brain will go into overload and will fail to retain information, all of your work will be for nothing. 

2. Eat healthy

Whilst we are working away at deadlines and revision, it can be easy to overlook meals and leave ourselves running on empty. It is very important to remember to eat three meals a day. 

If you are working away from home, bring a lunch with you! If you know you have to stop working to go to the shop, you are less likely to go. (This will also save you money in the long run, bonus!)

Keeping a bottle of water on your desk at all times will remind you to keep hydrated. Stay away from energy drinks. 

3. Keep in contact

It is also really easy to isolate ourselves during stressful periods, without realising we are even doing it! Keeping in contact with family members and friends can help you when you are going through a stressful period. You can speak to your friends and family during your breaks and arrange to meet up with them when you have finished working, this will also give you something to work towards and look forward to. 

4. Goal Setting

It can be helpful to set realistic goals when working towards deadlines or exam periods. Write a plan of what tasks you want to get done on each day, e.g. ‘research part of a topic’, or ‘complete practice paper’ so that you have a clear vision in your mind of what tasks you have to complete each day, rather than trying to complete everything at once with no real structure. 

When creating a plan, ensure that it is not overwhelming and actually achievable. You defeat the object if you set unreachable goals for yourself. 

5. Sleep

Just because you have deadlines and exams looming, does not mean you need to start pulling all-nighters in the library. Treat your studies like a 9-5 job. You have time in the morning to get up, have a healthy breakfast and get ready for the day. You can take a long lunch break and aim to finish around 5pm. You then have a study free evening to wind down, see friends and family, catch up on trashy TV and have a life! You are not a robot; you cannot survive working stupid amount of hours a day. 

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