So you’ve finished your midterm: Now what?

Photo of post-midterm nap
David McAllister/Staff

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During this time, we’ve all experienced the trials and tribulations of online school. But one discomfort that I feel isn’t discussed enough is that moment after you’ve finished a midterm. You find yourself staring at your computer, head feeling a little heavy coupled with a slight feeling of relief. But then, you wonder, “What now?”

I was in this position not too long ago after I finished a midterm at 7 p.m. on a Wednesday night. I was tired, a bit discouraged by the complexity of the exam, and I just wanted something to distract myself. I didn’t want to work on another assignment or scroll through TikTok and lay in bed (as I usually would’ve done), but I had no idea what to do. So, in order to save you from being stuck in this time-sucking limbo, I’ve compiled a list of things to do after a midterm.

Call a friend

Maybe you just want to rant about how hard that exam was, or maybe you just want to get excited because it went really well. Talking to a friend and releasing all the thoughts that were going through your head may be a good way to release any lasting tension about the exam.

Eat some food

You probably need to replenish yourself after using all of that brain power, and a fun snack might do the trick. Treat yourself to some ice cream, or maybe make yourself a snack right at home. Eating good food is always an excellent option to relax, recharge and take care of yourself.

Watch a show or movie

Sometimes, we just feel so drained that all we can do is sit and not process a single thought. Watching a show or a movie is a fun way to enjoyably pass the time while giving yourself a break. I always have a list of comfort shows that I’ve seen an unhealthy amount of times, but they never fail to make me smile.

Take a nap

If your midterm is in the middle of the day or even in the morning, sometimes a nap is exactly what you need. If you don’t have the option to “relax” for the rest of the day, a nap is a good option to allow yourself and your brain to rest in a way that doesn’t take up too much time.


If you can, go outside and walk around. Sitting in front of a computer for hours while focusing intently can be a strain. Going outside can help relax some of the tension and stress you endured during an exam. If a walk isn’t accessible, maybe put on some music and have a solo dance party. Touch your toes or do some stretches; moving your body in a way that is comfortable for you will get the endorphins flowing.

For those of you who have finished your midterms, congratulations! And for those of you who are still studying, I wish you the best of luck. I hope some of these simple ideas can spark inspiration for exciting plans that you can look forward to after your exams.

Contact Paloma Torres at [email protected].