Chapter 6: the record scratch

song of the week: smile

Greetings all! I hope you are feeling like you’re hitting your stride.

Hopefully I feel that way after every college student’s least favorite time (maybe second least favorite?) – exams.

Let me start by saying that exams here are like hearing a record scratch because even though I am studying abroad, I must admit that the study part was lacking. In other words, my explorative nature put my homework on the back burner. And wow, I did not realize how much until midterms rolled around. Thankfully, midterms here are not too different from midterms at Hope. Some tests contained all written questions, some contained multiple choice, and some were all essays. 

But, the studying part can be challenging until you find your ideal study space. There are plenty of distractions here that can keep you from doing your homework. You could join a friend in Paris for the weekend. You could roam around a museum for hours. You could have a morning stroll through a botanical garden. You could even order tons of churros and sneak them into a movie theater (wouldn’t recommend). The point is, if you have a problem with procrastinating, just know that it can turn into an even bigger beast while abroad. Here are some tips to help you be a scholar even when you don’t want to be.

  1. Find an accountability partner.
    1. If you’re anything like me, you may need a push from a friend to keep you on track. Find someone that you can count on to check on your progress.
  2. Dedicate parts of your day to homework – and stick to it.
    1. This may sound simple, but I was dodging this one for a while. Filling my calendar with homework time sounded SO boring because hello, Barcelona was waiting for me. But I just needed to remind myself that while I’m here to explore, I’m also here to study.
  3. Give yourself breaks.
    1. Find out how long you can study with a good focus. If it’s 30 minutes, then give yourself a break (I enjoy dancing around my room) before pushing on. No breaks = more fatigue = hatred for homework. So take care of yourself and take breaks!
      1. Below are some cool spots that I went to for a break 🙂

I know this blog wasn’t super exciting BUT I hope it was helpful for all you procrastinators out there. Today’s song is Smile by Mikky Ekko for two reasons. One – it is the PERFECT dance break song and two, it’s a reminder to think about the positive. Midterms and finals can sometimes feel like a huge energy drain and the stress can make us pessimistic. So, take a deep breath, remember that you are way more than a test score, and give the song a listen!

Published by Ayanna Bailey

Class of 2023 Psychology Major, Neuroscience Minor IES Barcelona, Spain

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