Getting Past the Mid-Year Slump


Micki Verdeja, Staff Writer

Though it may seem hard to believe (or easy, depending on how difficult your classes are) the 2022-2023 school year is halfway over, with only about four months until summer break. While we may be looking forward to summer activities and vacations, the winter weather and the stress of school and extracurriculars can make this time of year overwhelming. Since all of our snow days are used up and the weather is anything but warm, those of us who struggle with the winter weather may be finding the seasonal depression, coupled with the stress of all things school and extracurriculars, quite overwhelming. Balancing the demands of classwork, homework, and activities while trying to maintain a healthy social life can be challenging, and because of this stress, many of us have found ourselves in a slump, just going through the motions. Even if your classes are good and you’re having fun, waking up early and learning for hours straight can take its toll, leaving you feeling tired and overwhelmed at the end of the day. I asked Ms. Krohse, one of the counselors here at EHS, for any tips for getting past the slump and how to stay motivated through it.

She also pointed me toward an article listing the best motivation apps for iPhone and Android that you can access here:

Ms. Krohse stressed that it is important to be motivated every day, but also that loss of motivation is “a really normal human experience.” Self-care is also important; “…sleeping well every night, eating healthy, drinking lots of water, and getting some air!” If you’re not in the right headspace, your grade won’t be pretty. Don’t hesitate to take a break, even if it’s a short one, to collect yourself and regroup before diving back into homework. If you do something that makes you happy before, in the middle of, and after doing homework, you may find that having something to look forward to adds both quality and quantity to your work.

Another tip that she offered for getting past the slump was to set a schedule, saying “If you wait until you feel like you can do certain things, you’ll never get it done. Provide structure with a tool or system to check Sunday nights to look ahead at the week…Where is your study time? It can vary, but pre-plan your homework time.”

As for actually studying and doing homework during those set times, Ms. Krohse said “Create a good study environment. Play music, but put your phone on do not disturb.” Minimizing distractions is better for when you’re doing work, and also gives you something to look forward to once you’re done. Listening to your favorite music while you do homework often helps you finish faster, meaning that you’ll get to what you actually want to do! You may even be more productive and think more clearly, and not only will you finish all of your work, but you may find that you do higher-quality work as well.

She also said to limit screen time and to pay attention to how much you’re getting. She said screens are “great and enjoyable, but we need to be mindful of how much time we’re spending because we should save it for after our homework.”

However, if you’re really feeling overwhelmed and just can’t get anywhere close to finishing an assignment (we’ve all been there), don’t be afraid to ask for help or for an extension. Though it is slightly cliché, you truly will never know unless you ask!

Remember, it’s essential to take care of yourself and your well-being, both academically and emotionally. With a little bit of effort and self-care, you can make it through this winter feeling optimistic and ready to tackle the next challenge!