Stages of An All-Nighter: Gilmore Girls Edition

There are 2 important things that I think you should know about me. First, I excel at procrastination. This has come back to haunt me time and time again, especially during the end of the semester with projects and finals. The second thing you should know is that I love Gilmore Girls. I always try to include the show into whatever situation I’m in, like when I did my project for my Social Media Marketing course about the show’s Twitter presence. Needless to say, it’s an obsession. So, combine my obsession with the show, my excitement for the Netflix revival, and the stress of finals, and you get this post!

With the final exam period less than 2 weeks away, the responsible thing to do is to study as early as possible. But for most of us this doesn’t happen, which leads to the dreaded all-nighter. Consider this post to be a cautionary tale of what you’re getting yourself into when you study for a final at the last minute, and for all the procrastinators out there (aka me), a reminder of the torture you went through last time. Trust me when I say you do not want this to be your life for the next few weeks.

Stage 1 – Confusion


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Sure, you only have one night separating you from your final, but you’ll be fine! You crammed all the earlier chapters into your brain for the midterm and you just spent the past few classes learning the post-midterm chapters. You open your textbook to Chapter 1, pull out your class notes, download the lecture slides and… nothing. None of this looks familiar. Part of this is caused by nerves, but it’s also a case of out of sight, out of mind: the second you handed in that midterm in October it’s like your brain lost all the information you memorized. And those post-midterm chapters? Completely wiped out by the stress of those group projects and final assignments.

It’s going to be a long night.

Stage 2 – Determination


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This is when your inner Paris Geller comes out, ready to power through the course concepts and do an amazing job on the final. Your desk is neatly organized, you have your study method figured out, and you have a fresh cup of coffee/tea beside you. This is also one of those rare situations where your phone is off so you’re in a distraction-free zone. You’re determined to ace this exam, and there’s nothing stopping you now!

Note: this stage is usually lasts the least amount of time.

Stage 3 – Regret 


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You’re going to spend a lot of time kicking yourself for being in this completely avoidable situation. You knew when you enroled in this course that there would be an exam. Your professor reminded you to study pretty much every week from the time you finished writing the midterm, and made a point of mentioning how “difficult the exam was for the students last year.” The exam schedule was released weeks ago, so you knew exactly when this day was coming, yet you still managed to put off studying until the night before. How is this even possible? Sure, we all have a lot going on in our lives, but you’d think that once you survived that deadly, all-nighter midterm season you’d learn not to procrastinate.

Stage 4 – Contemplation


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There’s a direct correlation between the moment when you seriously consider calling it quits and how comfy your bed looks. Right now, you’re ready to give up and take whatever grade you can get, but you’re also wrestling with your studious side that wants to do well. Your study breaks have changed from scrolling through Instagram to calculating what minimum exam grade you need to pass the course. This is also when you become super thankful for the genius former Ryerson student who created this GPA/Grade Calculator, to help you figure out the grade you need to pass.

Stage 5 – Acceptance 


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Acceptance happens in 1 of 2 ways: either you realize that you’ve studied hard enough to do well on the final, or you’re mentally and emotionally drained and officially give up. You’ve either crawled into bed hoping to make the most of that 45 minutes of sleep you have left or you’re flipping through your notes at lightning speed. Either way you feel anxious, sick, and/or stressed and just want to get the day over with. It’s not a good feeling to have before an exam, and this is usually the stage when you promise yourself that you’ve learned your lesson and will never do this again.

And then you end up dedicating an entire blog post to the topic, because you know that despite everything you will still manage to do this to yourself in a few weeks.

Featured Image: YouTube