How to ace an all nighter

Boss those deadlines

With exams on the horizon and deadlines rapidly approaching (hate to break it to you guys), we all know the time of the frantic all nighters and coffee chuggers is upon us once more. So, instead of actually working on coursework way in advance or making a well-organised and colour-coded revision timetable, here are some handy tips to make you the PRO all-nighter who doesn’t even need sleep anymore!

don't forget motivational post-it notes. very important.

don’t forget motivational post-it notes. very important.

  1. Caffeine and Nap combo

Drinking coffee on its own may seem like the way to go, and pretty damn obvious, but research shows that taking your caffeine boost followed by the ideal 26 minute nap time will leave you waking up feeling refreshed and ready to SMASH that coursework at 3am.

2. Go into the light

WARNING: do not try this if hungover

WARNING: do not try this if hungover

No seriously. Exposing yourself to bright light, preferably sun but let’s be honest here – artificial works too, and you are tricking your body into thinking it is no time to sleep and TA DA, another few hours of fake energy in the bag!

3. Avoid the carbs and stay hydrated

dreaming of those carbs

dreaming of those carbs

Protein, protein, protein is what you need to survive. Go back to your basic primal instincts and subsist on meat for the day before you have your all nighter. No sugary sweets or drinks for you! And the age old tip of drinking water to stay alert and stop dehydration. It is a fine balance between water and coffee, don’t overdo either!

down it fresher! *cries*

down it fresher! *cries*

4. The cold never bothered me anyway

Keep your room cool or if you go to the library, sit by an open window and DO NOT wrap up warm. Basically, the colder you are the more alert you are. Cold showers are also recommended if you are super hard core.

5. Essential oils

Use them like drugs. Lime, lemon and grapefruit to keep you awake and lavender to bring you back into bed and sleep. Boots and superdrug are your new dealers for these study saver boosts. Get them in vaporisers, shower gels or whatever to get you through this bleak time.

6. Do not attempt to multitask

envisioning success is half the journey according to self help books... right?

envisioning success is half the journey according to self help books… right?

It will not work. Despite your best efforts your sleep deprived brain will not handle any more than one task at a time. Make a time planned list. Included loo breaks if you have to. Map out your night and stick to it, if you let panic take over.. sorry but then you really ARE screwed.

There it is, your 6 point breakdown of how to ace an all nighter and hopefully not become a zombie who hasn’t showered in days. Don’t overdo it though folks, we don’t want any major breakdowns outside Hallward!

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University of Nottingham