How To: Stay Awake for Late Night Homework Sessions

Although I’m not an advocate of involuntary all-nighters, sometimes we don’t have any other choice (that’s why they’re involuntary!) For a personal example, tonight is going to be a long night for me of chemistry homework, quizzes, and lab write-ups, and I definitely need advice on how to stay up – so I researched it and decided to write this article to share with the readers at Distance Learning.

Advice from a coffee cup. (photo by mrsdkrebs)

Advice from a coffee cup. (photo by mrsdkrebs)

There are a bunch of things you can do to keep yourself up, but probably the most effective are going to be:

#1. Stocking up on energy drinks

Caffeine, caffeine, caffeine. Can I please have more? Just be weary, because I’m sure you’ll have extra bathroom breaks if you’re downing four large cups of cappuccino. Mmm, but I’m not exactly sure anyone would mind!

If you don’t necessarily like coffee, go ahead and try tea. If you don’t like tea, you can try energy drinks like Monster and Red Bull. Either way, caffeine (and maybe sugar?) is what you’re looking for.

#2. Study in groups

If there are people around you and they’re all doing the same thing, you’re going to be more motivated to do the same thing as well. This is why dorm room lobbies are generally one of the better places to go study.

My next favorite is the twenty-four hour Starbucks, simply because you know the only people there at three in the morning are the people on their laptops. Even though you aren’t necessarily talking together (but let’s face it, you’re probably not doing that in your dorm room lobby either) – you have a mutual understanding that you all are in the same boat: work.

If you don’t necessarily want to be at either of those places, here’s an article I wrote in the past about unconventional places to study.

#3. Exercise

Although it sounds counter-productive to waste your time working out when you have things that are due the next day, contrary to popular belief, exercise actually energizes you. A sure-fire way to stay awake is to move your body. And I’m sure your body wouldn’t mind the extra care you’re giving it anyway.

If you’re far too tired to do that right now,

#4. Try napping for intervals of 15-10-5 minutes. Wake yourself up during each interval, which should total twenty minutes. They say the best time to nap is between fifteen and thirty minutes to ensure that you’re not ruining your sleep schedule – and causing yourself to be more tired. Fifteen to thirty minutes of sleep is all your brain needs to function at it’s finest again.

If these things don’t work, I don’t know what to tell you. You know your body best, and you know what works for you. The only thing I can advise against is taking a substance like Adderall, which could significantly and negatively impact you.

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