As we approach midterms, it’s increasingly likely that I’ll hear statements like these in halls and classrooms:
I can’t believe how late I stayed up studying last night.
The whole suite was up studying.
I’ve got more than 600 milligrams of caffeine in me right now.
I can’t even crash after class–I have a lab due by eleven.
I realize I am not the poster child for healthy sleep habits; I also know that I drink more caffeine than a person my age should. However, I encourage students to learn two things from my vault of personal experiences. First, if you need caffeine to keep you awake while you’re working on something, the results will probably fall well below the arc of your potential. If you’re not inspired by the assignment or the content, and it’s after midnight, all the saints in the blessed Church of the Red Bull will not make a difference. Accept your fate. Save your GI tract. Get the minimum done as quickly as possible and go to bed–and start earlier next time.
Second, for the love of all things actually holy, do not pull an all-nighter the night before spring break. You’ve got to be able to drive safely home, or to keep your driver awake on the trip.