Study breaks will benefit you in the coming weeks

While cramming for tests and projects may seem like a rite of passage for generations of students, it is not the most productive way to study. Even with the best worked out plans or intentions, last-minute cram isn’t uncommon, but that doesn’t mean you have to keep your nose on the books all day and night. In fact, it can decrease the quality of your study session and your mental and physical well-being.

Adding fun study breaks will allow you to relax, stay focused, and stay alert. Here are some exciting ways to give yourself a much-needed mental break.

Why should I take a break?

Taking a break from studying can increase your motivation and prevent burnout. It helps to give yourself a reward and a feeling of gratification, so that you can then easily return to your study environment. Study breaks increase your sense of control over your schedule and allow you to still enjoy your time. After a break, it will be easier to continue working and you will stay more focused on your exams – this responsibility will pay off in the long run. If you need an extra push to contemplate your procrastination, check out this TED talk for a little encouragement.

How often should I take a break?

According to this article, every 50 to 90 minutes you should move away from the concentrated goal of studying or working. Take a five-minute break every 25 minutes that you are studying.

What should I do during the break?

Treat yourself to variety at every break and include these factors:

  1. Take physics. Move your body to relieve your joints and increase blood circulation.
  2. Be social. Meet a friend or call a family member.
  3. Free your mind. Stop focusing on the topic you are studying.
  4. Abandon the screen. Move your eyes from your computer, phone or tablet.
  5. Stay hydrated. Water is your ally to stay healthy and alert.

Ideas for study trips:
30 minutes or less
  • 10 to 20 minute nap. Studies suggest that this is the optimal amount of time to increase alertness without the groggy side effects of longer sleep sessions.
  • Do you have a personal impromptu dance session Where healthy smoothie break in your apartment.
  • Take a brisk walk outside for 20 to 30 minutes. Your body will feel renewed with the fresh air and movement.
  • Create and enjoy a great snack. Carrots and hummus, celery and peanut butter, almonds or yogurt are a nutritious and easy choice.
  • Walk to Nebraska Union or Nebraska East Union to have a coffee or a hot chocolate from Starbucks.

1 hour

2 hours (or more)

A break of two hours or more is easier to accommodate when you have several days between exams.

  • Attend a virtual event at the Ross Media Arts Center.
  • Rock climbing at the Outdoor Adventure Center.
  • Enjoy a game of bowling at the Husker Bowling Center in the Nebraska East Union. The center is open from Tuesday to Sunday.
  • Stream a movie on the RHA Movie Channel if you live in a residence.
  • Get 8 hours of sleep or more. Deep, restful sleep improves your mood and productivity.

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