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The Grizzly Gazette

The Grizzly Gazette

The Grizzly Gazette

The Terrible Three Weeks

Freepik: Storyset

We all know the feeling of coming back from Thanksgiving Break and understanding you have three more weeks until Winter Break. It is the worst feeling in the world. You are done with school, maybe even burnt out. The thought of finals is lingering and all you want to do is be on Winter Break, but there are still three more weeks left of school.

Thanksgiving Break and Winter Break seem so close, yet so far away. 

For many students, the realization that finals and important projects are coming up stresses people out more than needed.

I have found Winter Break to be a motivation for me to keep going during these times. However, as grades begin to finalize, the stress of finals grows. Finals could be the difference between an A or a B in the gradebook. 

Students are often faced with a bombardment of important projects and assignments that weigh greatly on their final grade. The pressure of grades leaves little room for students to enjoy hobbies and relaxation. 

When looming deadlines, late night study sessions, and cramming become the norm, stress levels begin to peak. 

According to, “Finals and midterms accounted for the top source of stress for 31 [percent] of U.S. students. Class and workload were third at 23 [percent]. Homework placed fourth at 13 [percent].” 

“I feel very stressed and burned out. I feel unmotivated [about finals and school during these three weeks]. I am not feeling the holiday spirit due to how stressed and unmotivated I am and I love the holidays. I just feel like it is really challenging, especially with all Honors classes,” said Freshman Aurora Gonzalez-Salgado. 

During this time, students often overlook the festive spirit since it can be a challenge for them to juggle academic responsibilities, social pressures, and personal well-being. 

“They [the three weeks] are the most grueling and excruciating time of my entire life. It is a drag. I am just waiting for Christmas Break… I am awaiting finals and college applications,” said Anonymous, who is taking all AP classes. 

Social dynamics also take a hit during this time. Students are so worried about finals that they give up the time that they would typically spend with their friends and families to study. 

Seniors especially take a hit, the uncertainty of college applications and impending decisions causing tension to rise. These life-changing decisions come so fast. They weigh on the already demanding environment, which leaves many students feeling more overwhelmed and anxious than ever. 

As the nights come faster and the temperatures drop, many people start to feel depressed. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) can worsen the already stressful time.  

Although this time is taxing, it is important to prioritize self-care. Taking breaks, seeking support from friends and family, getting enough sleep, and engaging in activities that bring joy are all elements that help reduce stress levels.

This season is a perfect storm of stress with academic pressures, social tensions, and winter blues. 

However, even though these three weeks of stress are dreadful, the relief is always worth it once Winter Break comes.


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