R is for Ride a Rainbow Colored Unicorn.
No, sorry. R is for Revise-Your-Academic-Work.
You knew it had to be. Nothing that's good for you is ever easy. Revision is one of those things. It not only helps you strengthen the piece of work you are revising, but the process of revision strengthens your overall sense of language and helps you build your own "writer's voice."
If you're used to cutting things right down to the wire, try at very least to build a final evening in for revisions. Stop working a few hours before you know you'll be sitting down to revise, because you need to clear your brain, keep it from being locked in to the writing you've already got down on the page.
Reading your work out loud can be a big help in a clinch. It helps you find places where the logic isn't connecting, or the word choice is not conveying what you intended to originally. And try doing your revision on paper copy. (Just like, as a final step, you should always do the final proofreading on hard copy too; see P is Proofread on Paper!)
Reviewing the essay on paper will let you get out of the head space you were in sitting at your computer and look at everything in a fresh way. Particularly handy if things are down to the wire and you haven't been able to take a night or two off from the essay before settling in to revise.