Produced by Danielle Willis
BA (Hons) Multimedia Journalism
Staying focused over the Christmas period can be tough, especially when you’ve done a whole semester at university, have probably just handed in multiple assignments and just really want to let your hair down, chill out and relax. Well, the good news is you can do both. With thanks to the few handy tips that I’m about to offer.
- Take a couple of days away from studying
After studying hard all term, it’s unlikely that you’re going to be keen on putting your head straight back into your books the first day you head home. So instead, take a few days away from your studies and focus on chilling out, sleeping and catching up with friends and family, it’ll do you the world of good, and after all, you are supposed to be on a break.
- Get some sleep.
Sleep deprivation and university seem to go hand in hand, and all those late nights can cause lack of focus and motivation. So before you even attempt to begin your holiday studies, it’s a great idea to try and catch up on lost sleep and re-adjust your body clock.
First and foremost, to avoid completely forgetting about your exams and workload, create a revision timetable, and pin it up somewhere you’re likely to see it. That way, you’ll have a constant reminder of what you’re supposed to be doing, and can plan your revision around your free time, so you can not only enjoy freedom, but can blitz those all-important January exams.
- Avoid distractions
One of the major issues of today is the amount of distractions around us disabling our brains from optimum efficiency. Try turning your phone off and leave it with someone you trust to avoid going back to it, make sure the area you’re working in is fairly quiet and if revising on a laptop, log out of social media.
- Do ‘active revision’
I hate to break it to you, but passively staring at your text book whilst scrolling through Instagram doesn’t really count as revision. Try reading your notes, writing down questions and testing yourself, record yourself saying facts or create a mind map. Sadly, our brains need to actively do something with information in order to fully absorb it, so you’ll need a pen and paper at hand if you wish to do some learning.
- Set yourself targets
One of the best ways to ensure you’re making good progress is to set yourself targets on what you hope to achieve from your revision. After all, there is nothing worse than hiding in a book for hours on end and not making any progress.
- Test n’ Teach
It has been proven that teaching others is a good way to understand and remember your notes, you could also ask somebody to test you, as this is a great way of confirming knowledge.
- Reward yourself.
So, you’ve sat down for an hour or two and done some revision, you truly feel like you’ve got something out of it. Good on you. Once you have reached your day’s targets why not reward yourself and do something you enjoy? Buy a chocolate bar from your local shop or take the dog out for a walk.
So there you have it, my top tips on staying focused over the winter break. I wish you all the best of luck with your exams and a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.