Final Fears or Just an Illusion? By Tara Mohammed It‟s like a reoccurring nightmare. Always in your subconscious, but as the days get closer, you can‟t get it out of your mind. Final Exams. Now, I wish I had five easy steps to acing every final, but I like to keep it real - they don‟t exist. What I CAN help you with, is how best to prepare yourself mentally, physically, and spiritually for that week of dreadful finals. DON‟T Psyche yourself out! Its finals week, not the Day of Judgment. People have gone through it before you, and people will go through it after you. To prepare yourself mentally, write out your week. List all your exams and all other activities, responsibilities, or assignments you have. Having things on paper will help you visualize and organize your tasks. DON‟T skip prayers! Even if you feel like you‟ve just finally gotten into your studying groove, as much as you study, only Allah can determine your outcome; trust that. Also, what is an act of worship can also become a break from the seemingly never-ending studies at hand. You return to your books refreshed, renewed,
and in the right state of mind. Take the time to honor your prayers and value your time with Allah just as you value your time with your books. DON‟T overload on caffeine! They will only make you jittery causing you to crash later. If you drink caffeine regularly, completely cutting it out of your diet may give you a headache, so just stick to your regular one cup of Joe. Otherwise, avoid the Venti coffees and the destructive energy drinks. If you‟re getting your rest, just keep hydrated with water throughout the day. If you need a little kick, try green tea, warm or chilled, as an alternative. DON‟T forget to say bismillah! No better way to start your exam than with the remembrance of Allah. There are also many duaas, or supplications, you can say before you start your exam. A duaa that I particularly like is the one that Prophet Musa (peace be upon him) used before he went to confront Pharaoh, it goes as follows: “Rabbi ishrah lee sadree, Wayassir lee amree, Wahlul Uqdatan min lisanee, Yafqahoo qawlee” Translates: “My Lord, I ask you to expand my
breast, make my task easy, undo the knot in my tongue so that my speech will become comprehensible” DO make some sacrifices! Family having a movie night? Some friends celebrating their early end of exams? Sit it out. In the bigger scope of things, the extra time will help you eliminate the stressful nights keeping you calm, cool, and collected. You‟ll have all of winter break to let loose! DO stay up after Fajr! Following the practice of our beloved Prophet (may peace and blessings be upon him), do not return to your pillows straight after your Fajr prayer. Instead, use this time to study. You will retain a lot more information and feel less drowsy throughout the day. DO eat before your exam! Make an exception to your carbfree diet for the week. Carbs release most of the energy our brains use. To utilize this, eat a light meal with carbohydrates about two hours before your exam. Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, and nuts are all great things to incorporate into your meal.