It’s 4:00 in the morning and your eyes are starting to droop. As far as your meager mind can determine, you have two options: head to bed for two hours before waking up to study again, or pop in another pot of coffee and power on through the night.
Among all of the parties, classes, and football games in college, most students must also endure another common experience, the all-nighter. Any given night of the school year you can find students tucked away in their favorite corner of the library surrounded by empty cups of coffee and piles of scribbled-upon flash cards. These all-night study sessions can be more challenging than the material studied, but with a little perseverance and a good nap the next day you will have no problem pulling through the night and accomplishing your goals.
The trick behind all-night study sessions is to be consistent. Start off your night with some sort of caffeine. Try and stay away from sugary drinks and food because they make crashing a lot easier. A large cup of coffee or a five-hour energy shot will do the trick and give you an initial jolt of energy.
It is important to remember that cramming for a test can make maintaining information difficult. To avoid memory loss and maximize your retained knowledge, take breaks throughout the night. On a good night of studying I can usually make it two to three hours before a break is needed.
Each break should vary in length. Some breaks can be short 15-20 minute stumbleupon.com odysseys, while others could be a 45-minute trip from the library back home to eat some dinner.
You will be staying up an extra eight hours and because of this you are guaranteed to get hungry at some point. Great snacks to bring along in your backpack are granola bars. The nutrition from a small snack always brings energy levels up and helps you remain focused. Carrots are the ideal snack for studying for those of you who enjoy healthy foods. The snackability of carrots is intense because of their extra crunchy goodness.
Around 2 a.m. (unless it is finals week) the library usually closes. This calls for a transfer in location. Keep strong at this point. It is very easy to convince yourself that it is all right to go to bed now.
My campus has four buildings that stay open 24-7. Go grab a couch in the union, or head to a study room. If none of these options is available, head home, but avoid your bedroom at all costs.
Four in the morning is the point of the night when everything speeds up. Students start to count down the hours until their tests or until papers are due. Keep focus and remember that you can always take an extra long nap after everything is over.
Have breakfast around seven. Amazingly this is probably the time that most of the world not in college is waking up and eating also, so don’t feel alone. Nourish yourself and start to pump back up your energy for the day. Talk to people that you see, listen to energetic music and finish memorizing the final details of your material.
All-nighters are a typical college experience because most college students procrastinate studying to the last minute. I am definitely guilty of this fault.
Of course, all-nighters can be avoided by preparing yourself beforehand…