Surviving March Monotony | Sophie Sills
No month drags on like March. Between the lack of breaks or long weekends, frequent gloomy weather, finals, and just the overall boring nature of the month, it sometimes seems like March lasts just about forever. As a matter of fact, just three days ago in my U.S. History class, my teacher mentioned the fact that it would soon be March and hopeless groans could be heard echoing all around the classroom. One student even exclaimed, “I hate March!” much to all of our amusement, and I can’t say I disagree. But despite the fact that the month can be tiresome and a bit demoralizing at times, it doesn't have to be all bad. So, without further ado, here are my tips on how to survive “the longest month of the year.”
Get ahead on finals studying. No one enjoys having to spend ten hours of one singular weekend studying. Reduce your stress by doing a little bit each day or each weekend leading up to finals week.
Take breaks when you need them. The month of March can be exhausting, and it’s easy to get burned out, especially with finals looming over us. Consider taking a day to do something fun with friends, whether that be trying a new place to eat, going shopping, or simply hanging out at someone’s house. Or, if your friends aren’t around or you’d simply rather do something alone, consider taking a walk/bike ride, spending some extra time with your pet, or driving to catch the sunset at your favorite spot. Even taking time off to do little things can greatly improve your mood and your ability to focus and maintain motivation.
Find a new hobby to pursue in your free time. Since we are all busy (and most likely stressed) during the month of March, it’s all the more important to make the most of our free time. I find that more often than not, doing something productive (but still relaxing) during my free time is much more fulfilling than just scrolling through Instagram for hours on end. There are a plethora of hobbies and pastimes to experiment with: for instance, playing around with a musical instrument, drawing, painting, running, surfing, cooking, or reading, to name just a few!
Go outside. Even if you’re feeling exhausted or are lacking motivation, I promise you that you won’t regret spending some time outdoors, especially on a nice day. I can attest to the fact that some fresh air always makes things better and gives my mind the break and the clarity that it needs. Here in San Diego, we are surrounded by so much natural beauty, and thanks to our famously good year-round weather, it’s easy to find things to do outdoors. Some of my favorites include hiking at Torrey Pines Reserve or Los Penasquitos, surfing, picnicking, taking walks with friends or family, or finding a cute outdoor coffee shop to sit at and enjoy a nice morning.
Set goals. Especially in times when you may be lacking motivation, goal setting is a must. Not only does it help you keep track of your tasks, but the sweet satisfaction of checking things off your to-do list or accomplishing your goals can often be the main thing that helps you push through times of hopelessness and exhaustion. There is a wide array of goals to set, but some to consider if you’re pressed for ideas are goals pertaining to academic performance/finals, time management, healthy habits, or fitness (to name just a few).
I hope these tips can help you go into March with more of a positive mindset, and best of luck to everyone on getting through it! You got this!