The struggle that is staying awake in class is a phenomenon known to students of all ages. This problem is existent even before we begin grade school: Those kindergarten and pre-kindergarten naps, what most used to dread but would greatly appreciate now, are coming back to haunt us. Often times, while in class, even blinking can bring on doom. Your eyelids stay shut for too long, and your head begins to slink towards the desk. Fear is often times the only thing that will keep you awake, but even then that doesn’t always work. Here are a few tips for staying awake.
1. Rest your beautiful self.
Though not always feasible, the best method to stay awake during class would be getting a full nights rest. The average amount of sleep a teenager should get is between 8.5 and 9.25 hours while adults should get between 7 and 9 hours. Getting the correct amount of sleep will aid you in not becoming extremely drowsy during class and will also allow for being more attentive in class.
Since this targeted amount is not often realistic, a personal tip of mine is to sleep as early as possible and then wake up at least an hour before you need to leave for another place. This allows me to fully wake up, so rather than walking into class groggy, I’m able to stay energized for a slightly longer period of time.
2. Avoid positions that make it easier to sleep.
It is not appropriate to put your head down and rest while the teacher is talking, but sometimes you feel if you have no other option. During times like this, it is best to try to sit up as straight as possible and move parts of your body to stay awake.
For example, pressing her feet into the ground works for fellow prospie Kaitlyn Kelly, and an alternative to this could be making the movement for snow angels with your feet. If you’re really desperate, and know how to remain awake enough to continue to hear the teacher, a secret method of mine is putting my hands in a position that is similar to binoculars and looking down, both making L shapes. This shades your eyes from the teacher and allows for a quick cat nap to be possible.
3. Pull out the big guns (energy drinks) from time to time.
Sometimes desperate times call for desperate measures and this means pulling out the energy drinks and coffee. Common brands of energy drinks that can be found locally are Five Hour Energy, Monster and Red Bull. If you are going to use energy drinks, be sure to test them outside of class before the day you think you need one. Energy drinks and coffee can cause an accelerated heart beat and feelings of nausea if you cannot handle the levels of caffeine, so they may not always be the best method for staying awake. Recommended by another fellow prospie, Allison Plotnik, is Mio Energy. Drinking any type of energy drink on a regular basis is typically bad for your health and is not advised, but they can be helpful for temporary relief.
4. Run away…amongst other things.
Another useful tip is to ask the teacher if you can go to the bathroom. The quick break gives you time to stretch your legs and splash some water on your face, hopefully enabling you to be able to stay awake for a longer period of time. Staying hydrated and drinking cold water are also helpful.
A tip from prospie Elizabeth Torres is to, “Force yourself to actively take notes, make little drawings pertaining to the lesson, your thoughts on some lecture points… ANYTHING that will force you to write and think.” I personally try to follow this tip as well because I find that if I doodle and listen to the teacher simultaneously, I stay awake better. Elizabeth also recommends chewing minty gum, sitting in the front of the class (the fear factor), and sitting next to a hyper classmate.
While staying awake in class can truly be difficult, the reward of actually (attempting) to learn is wonderful. Hopefully after all of your classes are done you will be able to curl up in a ball on your bed and sleep. Make sure to get as much rest as possible and manage your time effectively to ensure this can occur.