In preparation for the increased load: drop or defer every activity or obligation you reasonably can. Early in the term, when life seems tame and under control, it’s easy to start initiating projects and agreeing to participate in events and activities. Then things get busy. Now is the time to undo that optimistic obligating in preparation for the battle to follow. Be ruthless.
Many small obligations in your life resist dropping. Maybe you owe an article to a campus publication. Maybe you’re supposed to present the readings in an upcoming class. Before you transition into full on scramble mode, focus on dashing through as many of these remaining small obligations as possible. Purge the small and urgent off the face of your to-do list. Be a relentless completion machine, clearing your plate of the little things that might later gunk up the wheels of progress during the critical weeks ahead. Do this even if it means you are finishing small tasks well before they are due (the horror!)
If someone tries to rope you into a new obligation, give them one of only two answers: no or after the semester ends. Stick to this. No matter how small or how tempting it is to offer up your time. For now, you need to keep things simple.
Once your schedule is cleared of the small stuff, start dividing up the final days of the semester – in 3 parts – morning, afternoon and evening. Put aside, for example, an entire weekend just for studying for your hardest courses, but mix up the subjects so that each time slot is a change from the one before.
Clear Schedule, Clear Mind
Make to-do lists and to review them at the end of the day and to check off everything that was completed, and to write down an explanation for why some things weren’t completed. So if you procrastinated, you’d see on paper how crazy your excuse was not to do a certain assignment (eg. watched an entire season of Modern Family), thus discouraging you from procrastinating next time.