Keeping up your productivity during the Christmas period
Every year I find myself in the same predicament – though it’s lovely to be back surrounded by family and the Christmas festivities, it’s so far removed from university that I lose track of all the work that needs to get done before the start of Term 2. Christmas at my house is full of good distractions; food, family and friends. Given the business, it’s no wonder that if I allow myself, any time to myself is spent ‘relaxing’ instead of dealing with that looming workload . My advice ? Tackle it bit by bit every day. With years of experience to go by, here are my top tips for keeping up productivity over the Christmas period. 1) Realign with your goals. Writing out the things I need to do given the time frame is a great way for me to remotivate myself , as it makes me realise I don’t have that much time (it’s a slightly panic induced motivation, but it works!). Knowing that is a great motivation to drive myself to work in the small moments that I do have to myself. 2) Use rest periods wisely. It’s amazing how much the excess food and drink can clog your mind without you realising! But being aware of that, getting enough sleep, hydrating yourself between nights out and making sure you get enough nutrition will all help you to energise your brain and refocus your mind. 3) Benefit from the time spent with friends and family. University is a great experience, but sometimes time away from your home comforts makes you realise how much you appreciate being around people who truly know you. And let’s face it – those home-cooked meals don’t hurt either!
4) Know that you’re not alone!
Honestly, this is a difficult time to get back into the work mindset and I just want to reassure you that you’re not alone. I’ve found it challenging to stay on top of my essay deadlines whilst keeping up to date with politics readings and juggling my French learning. However, after speaking to many of my friends I feel reasurred that this is something everyone is experiencing; they don’t call it the ‘January blues’ for nothing. Talking to friends does help and time-management is something you can plan together with other people. I found making a timetable for Term 2 with my friends was a productive way to feel less alone and more motivated for the new start.
All in all, don’t stress too much about work but stay mindful of your deadlines. Plan ahead so that you don’t fall too behind. Around that, appreciate the fesitivities and warmth, and maybe take some time out to consider those who aren’t so fortunate and may not have access the same comforts. I often find that relative perspective helps on those grey winter days. So, grab a blanket, stay warm and have yourself a Merry Christmas 🙂 & good luck! Armeena