By Ashley Wall
By Donald Halsing
[Editor’s note: Gatepost Grievances has been renamed Gatepost Guidance to better reflect the information provided within the column moving forward.]
At this point in the semester, students have dived right into the deep end of midterms. While midterms can be a stressful and overwhelming period for some students, it’s important to take a step back to reflect upon your physical and mental well-being.
Are you getting enough sleep? Are you eating nutritious meals that nourish not only your body, but also your mind? Are you in contact with the professors of courses in which you may be struggling?
If you answered “no” to any of these questions, that’s OK! We see you.
Many students don’t know where to start in their process of seeking help to get them through the midterm season. Although there are lots of resources on campus, some students don’t know they are available for free, or how to access them.
At the forefront is your mental well-being. Staring at computer screens tirelessly trying to finish calculus exams and research essays can take a toll on your body. Your mind is packed full of study material – but it’s good to let it breathe once-in-a-while.
Did you know FSU has an on-campus Counseling Center that is free of charge for students? It is open Monday – Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. It also has walk-in hours during their normal business days – the Counseling Center recommends arriving between 2:15 p.m. and 2:30 p.m.
Perhaps the stress and emotions you are experiencing through the midterm season are more than just that – midterms – but that’s all right! We encourage you to take advantage of the free online mental health screening the Wellness Center provides for students. The center also provides an on-site MindKare Kiosk for screenings as well.
Remember: asking for help is the first step to becoming the best you. If you choose to take the leap, we’re proud of you!
Keeping your body physically healthy is another important aspect of flourishing during midterms. The Athletic and Recreation Center on campus is a great place to start. It offers fitness classes, a weight room, and so much more.
According to Harvard Medical School, “the physical symptoms of stress are themselves distressing. In fact, the body’s response to stress can feel so bad that it produces additional mental stress.”
Exercise releases endorphins, which in turn helps you sleep better, resulting in a reduction of stress. Exercise helps to keep your body and mind strong.
However, your body can’t function at its highest potential without nutritious meals. The Dining Commons is a popular spot, but FSU also offers additional campus restaurants.
With selections ranging from smoothie bowls to sushi, there is an option for everyone. The Dining Commons also provides mindful options to help stay on track with eating healthily.
However, you cannot truly succeed in the treacherous waters of midterms without ensuring that you are getting the help you need academically as well.
Professors are required to hold office hours where you can ask directed questions regarding your course, or you can always email them. Some professors may offer extensions if you simply explain your situation. There are so many options academically to help you succeed.
Your professors want you to succeed and we want you to succeed.
If you need additional help outside of class time and office hours, we recommend heading over to CASA. It offers peer tutoring, academic coaching, and so much more!
If you can’t physically make it to CASA, there is a new program through Blackboard called “ThinkingStorm,” which is an online tutoring platform. You can upload essays for review, attend drop-in tutoring, and even reserve an appointment for a future online tutoring session.
The most important thing you can do during midterms is put yourself first. Embrace your ability to get help when needed. Talk to professors if you feel unsure about a topic. Check in on your friends who may be struggling too.
Know there are other students on campus who are experiencing the same stressful feelings.
We see you. We are amongst you. We are proud of you.
Asking for help in order to succeed during midterms is not a sign of weakness. It is a significant accomplishment. You are taking the steps needed to ace those exams and essays, while keeping your mind and body happy and healthy.
Just remember, midterms are not a time for self-destruction.
[Editor’s note: The writers of this column would like to apologize for a misprint in a recent column regarding parking on campus. Through a miscommunication, not all information provided to us by the University Police Department was fully reported.]
[Editor’s note: Gatepost Grievances is a bi-weekly column. The opinions of the authors do not reflect the opinions of the entire Gatepost staff.]