As a student, you probably already went to school or college after sleeping badly… or not at all. If this only happens from time to time, it’s OK. But if it’s becoming a habit, you’d better be careful.
Why do we need to sleep ?
When you’re in high school or college, you have a lot of thing to study and remember. And if you don’t sleep enough, you won’t be able to memorize. It’s as simple as that.
Also, lack of sleep increase calories intake, increases blood pressure, reduce patience and attention and so on.
Every student should thus sleep well at night : 6 to 9 hours at night are a good average.
What do I do when I can’t sleep well at night ?
There are many methods, apart from medecine (avoid sleeping pills ! We’re toot young for that stuff) that can help you.
In this post, I’m going to tells you about methods that really work. And I know they do because I’ve tested them myself. Let’s go !
1. A cup of hot milk with a spoonful of honey before going to bed.
It seems that people in the US (so most of our studyblr colleagues) call milk “lullaby”. It certainlly has a calming effect, apparently because it contains serotonin.
As a kid I was often restless at night and when my parents wanted a break from me, my mother gave me a cup of hot goat milk with a spoonful of honey and some drops of orange blossom. It always worked.
For those of you who might be lactose intolerant like I am myself, avoid cow milk ! Try goat milk or sheep milk (these work well too). And if you don’t like their taste, you can always try with soy milk or rice milk.
2. Camomile tea
In December 2014, I was totally stressed about an exam. It was my first exam in law school and I really wanted to pass it.
On the night before, I felt like I would not be able to sleep. I was literally shaking like a leaf (what stress can do to a normally calm person is amazing).
I then decided to have a cup of camomile tea before going to bed. It was magical : 10 minutes after I had finished my cup, my hands stop shaking. Five minutes after that, I felt like I was in control again.
If you don’t like the taste of camomile tea, try it with some cookies. Take a bite from your cookie each time you take a sip of tea. It will help.
In Belgium, Switzerland and France, we have an amazing stuff called Sedatif PC. It is useful to beat anxiety, to reduce anger and stress and it helps when you suffer from insomnia or when you struggle to get to sleep.
My neighbours often have parties. And in that case, they get really noisy until late at night. In situations like these, I take two pills od Sedatif PC (you have to put them under your tongue and wait until it melts). It prevents me from getting angry and throw stuff through my window in my neighbour’s yard. And it also helps me to get to sleep while they’re still partying.
It really helps but it’s not a sleeping pill. You can take it without fear.
I know that, now and then, people advise us to read our notes at night just before we turn the light off. It helps your brain to memorize things…
I don’t know about you, but any time I try this method, I end up dreaming about the class related to the notes I’ve just read. And it’s not happy dreams, rather nightmares like I forgot the date of the exam, I turn up late for the exam, and so on.
So, I’ve developed this habit of not taking my notes to my bed anymore. I usually stop studying half and hour before going to bed. I watch TV or I read some pages of a book or even a magazine before jumping into bed.
5. Try to be more active
A little bit of sport during the day helped me a lot in the past.
I’ve noticed that if I spend the day sitting at my desk studying and reading, I’m not really tired when it’s time to go to bed. On days when I move a bit more, I sleep better.
Hating sports is not an excuse ! I’m not saying you should run a marathon. You can simply go for a walk (even with friends or family), go biking, walk your dog if you have one… You can also do a bit of fitness at home like abs exercises or squats and so on. Yoga, tai-chi and stretching are excellent ideas too.
6. Ask for respect
I hate it when people get up during the night (to eat or go to the bathroom or anything like that) and I can hear them. I hate it when I go to bed at 10:00 pm and someone comes in my room at 10:30 pm and bang my door against the wall. I hate it when I get up at 6:30 am and someone enters my room at 5:00 am to cuddle my cat (who is sleeping on my bed).
If you know one or more of these situations, just do like me and ask people to respect your sleeping hours. If they don’t, insist. If you ask politely but firmly enough, it should work.
I’m getting a bit tired of taking notes of the relevant chapters for my exam on International Business Law in October. As soon as I notice that I’m starting to get unmotivated, I take a break and work on something else, e.g. reviewing a case, learning some Japanese vocab, just working on one of my many other projects (that have nothing to do with studying) or just reading a book.
[08.14.2015] During the week of orientation, I was too tired to get any studying done. And now I can. Look at those pretty Civ Pro notes. Only pretty because I was on the phone with my sister, otherwise I wouldn’t bother.
For university students, we all know that lectures are most often the worst thing in the world. Most of the time they are early in the morning (ugh, didn’t even have time for coffee!) and can often run as long as 3 hours (snooze!) So Ive complied a bit of information that may help you in preparing for lectures!
1. Don’t be afraid to ask for help - College is a place to grow and improve. You are in college to learn more about the career you want to pursue. So, don’t hesitate to ask for help.
2. Build connections and keep them strong - Stepping out your comfort zone and building connections as early as college is a good way to support yourself once you’ve welcomed yourself in the real world. You may be academically gifted, but having a good set of connections is another key to be successful.
3. Sleep early, and wake up earlier - There is only one simple key in graduating, be productive, and good amount of sleep makes someone productive. I know a lot of people who will protest and justify that procrastination works better for them. But sleeping early, and waking up earlier makes someone finish all required tasks faster. And if you’re finished earlier, you get to check more stuff on your to do list.
4. Maintain a healthy lifestyle - Studies show that when you have a healthy lifestyle, you have a healthier brain. Thus, you become more efficient and productive as a student. It doesn’t necessarily mean you have to be a gym rat. Jogging for at least 30 minutes is enough to keep yourself healthy.
5. Moderate your caffeine intake - Most people rely too much on coffee that they have a hard time focusing when they’re low on caffeine. Studies show that even though coffee does wake your brain up, it also increases the body’s level of cortisol (stress hormone), and it also makes you gain weight.
6. Don’t be too hard on yourself, it’s okay to fail - We are here to learn, and failure is part of it. One failure doesn’t necessarily mean you will never succeed. Pick yourself up, move on, and try again. Tomorrow is always another day to be better.
7. Save money - You don’t know when you’ll need it. So be practical and save your money.
8. Always bring a water jug with you - Studies show that drinking water helps in boosting ones mental capability and capacity. It also make you lose weight, if you’re wondering.
9. Call or text your parents whenever you can - They’re not getting any younger. Call them as much as you can, better go home and visit them. Always remember that nothing is more important than them.
10. Don’t hesitate to help someone - Helping blockmates or college friends are vital to one college student’s survival. Like what they say, no man is an island. Helping is a cycle which all college students must learn and appreciate.
11. It’s okay to lose friends - Don’t be too hard on yourself when you realize that someone’s not inviting you to his/her party anymore. You lose friends. We lose friends. We grow up. We move on. But always remember that it’s okay to lose friends, just don’t lose yourself in the process–find yourself, and be better.
12. Be friends with your professors - After you pass their subjects, of course. But being friends with professors will not only help you learn more about your major, but life. They have the most beautiful, intelligent insights about life.
13. Don’t trust easily - Be friends with everyone and never forget to be kind. But always remember that the only person you have to trust is yourself. Trust is a double edged sword, use it wisely.
14. Smile - It doesn’t only boost your mood, but you can also make someone’s day brighter by smiling at them. Spread the positivity, everyone in college needs a dose of that.
15. Always remind yourself why you’re here - If you feel like giving up, remind yourself about your dreams. You know why you’re here, you know why you want to graduate, you don’t want one exam to ruin your life forever. It’s easier to give up, holding on makes you braver–and smarter.