How to boost productivity: less stress more progress


Maddie Turnbull '24, Staff writer

In a time where stress and anxiety is surrounding us, productivity tends to diminish.

With midterms around the corner, students are faced with stress now more than ever. Balancing seven classes worth of tests and projects, life will get stressful and overwhelming, especially if this is someone’s first time taking midterms. For students to succeed in midterms, many need a boost in productivity to start their studying and allow them to achieve success. Having the ability to succeed is not easy when dealing with physical and mental stress. Therapist Ellen Miller is an expert in helping students with academic and personal stress.

“The best way to relieve stress is to validate yourself for what you are doing,” Miller said. “By saying ‘Wow I’m doing a really hard thing by studying for midterms during a COVID surge when I’ve never done this before,’ (you’re helping to validate yourself).”

By giving self validation, one is able to acknowledge that they are doing difficult things. Hearing themselves say that something is tough can help alleviate some of the stress.

“Set small achievable goals,” Miller said. “(These can be) things you can do daily: small measurable goals you can do every day leading up to the midterm to keep organized.”

According to Miller, by setting small achievable goals, one is able to plan out what they need to accomplish. By setting small goals like going over each chapter every day leading up to the midterm, a student is more likely to succeed.

“When you’re under stress you become stuck in your own head and get caught up in it,” Miller said, “When you have a team of people encouraging you along the way by holding you accountable, then its doesn’t feel like you’re alone”

Having a support system consisting of family members, friends, teachers or other students in your class allows for support and encouragement to continue regardless of how difficult it may be. Having support allows the self validation necessary to succeed.

“It’s not easy at all,” Miller said, “Lead with compassion and accountability, have self validation and self love and know what you’re doing is hard.”