Actually it’s not a conspiracy, and neither is ‘dead week,’ but you clicked, so I’m happy. This post really is about finals week, though, so keep reading.
I’ve noticed something strange during my time in college. Everyone gets really stressed out during the last week of the semester (the Facebook tells me this definitively), but I can’t figure out why. Finals week is suspiciously like every other week, except you have less things to do and you can eat every meal at taco bell if you want to because everyone accepts “it’s finals week” as a valid excuse. Sounds pretty good to me.
But we’re all stressed out by the idea of finals week, even if the reality isn’t usually that bad. Consciously or subconsciously, we think college is less legitimate if finals week isn’t awful, so we make it horrible in our minds to build up the importance of ourselves, as college students.
I do feel cool and contemporary if I go study at Panera during finals week, admittedly. And maybe I feel a little more contemporary if I paint myself as a struggling college kid trying to synthesize six months of information into a comprehensive understanding of some obscure subject, but I don’t think that little self-esteem boost is worth the inaccurate image of myself it’s built upon. So I’m pretty okay with seeing myself as just a person who likes broccoli cheddar soup and looks at funny pictures on the Internet with a textbook laying forgotten at the edge of the table.
For me, that’s a much less stressful way to think about finals week. And since I’m such an open-minded, community-oriented, hyphenated-adjective college student, I won’t even be mad if you want to adopt that same way of looking at finals week.
Seriously, though, relax. You’re not alone, you’re not doomed, the weather is beautiful, and winter break is almost here. Good luck everyone!