Christmas break is here! This short vacation from the rigorous normal school schedule can be a great benefit… or it can be a total waste of time.
Because of the numerous celebrations, the Christmas break can easily fly past without anything substantial being accomplished.
On the other hand, a well-planned Christmas break can be a healthy combination of learning, working, socializing, and resting.
Here are four techniques to help you make the most of your Christmas vacation.
#1 Wake Up On Time
Too many college students waste hours of their vacation time sleeping. While resting is important, lazily sleeping through the morning is never a good idea.
Not only is waking up late a bad way to start a day, but, I have also found that, when I wake up late, I am actually more tired during the rest of the day than when I wake up on time.
On the other hand, getting too little rest is also bad for ones health and productivity. To solve this problem, I always try to get about nine hours of sleep. When I go to bed at night, I set my alarm clock to wake me up about nine hours later.
For many students, the difficulty of getting up on time finds its source the night before. Going to bed late encourages late rising. If you struggle with this habit, remember Benjamin Franklins famous saying, Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise.
Action: During this Christmas break, set yourself a reasonable bedtime and rising time and stick to them.
#2 Plan Your Time
Now that you are not sleeping through your break, you need to figure out what to do with your new free time. If you do not have a definite plan, you will find that the time is quickly absorbed by mind numbing entertainment such as TV, video games, or worse.
To save your newly-won time from this inglorious fate, you need a schedule that will keep you productive.
Follow these four steps to create your holiday plan:
- Write a two column task list. – In the first column, record the activities that you need to accomplish. Now, in the second column, write down the activities that you want to finish.
- Map out your necessary tasks. – Using an electronic calendar, a paper calendar, or simply a piece of paper, schedule times to complete your necessary tasks.
- Add your wanted tasks. – Now that you have set time aside for all the needed duties, fill the rest of your available time with the activities that you wanted to accomplish.
- Stick to it. – Now that you have a schedule, you are leaps and bounds ahead of most students, but you still have one crucial step left to complete. During the entire break, force yourself to obey your schedule always.
When Christmas is over, you will be encouraged by remembering how much you were able to accomplish!
Action: Create a balanced schedule and follow it.
#3 Continue Learning
During this break from official school, do not allow your mind go on total vacation. Instead, read some (nonfiction) books, study a little math, and, if you are daring enough, actually do a little studying!
By doing this work during your break time, you will keep your mind ready for action when school starts again. A little rest strengthens the mind; too much rest weakens it.
I have noticed this especially during my summer vacation. If I do not do some studying during the summer, I am forced to relearn information that I already knew the year before. In addition, I lose some of my ability to concentrate on studying, so my initial study sessions at the beginning of a school year are often painfully slow and difficult.
By simply devoting an hour or two each day to exercising the brain, you can avoid all this frustration and be prepared when school restarts.
Action: Devote time to keep your brain sharp.
#4 Find Some Way to Make Money
For those of us who are trying to get through school debt-free (and even for those who do have loans), money is almost always needed. Take advantage of the Christmas vacation to earn some money.
Get a part-time job, start a blog, found a business, or write some scholarship applications!
Action: Find a way to make money this Christmas break.
May this Christmas season be both happy and productive!
How do you use your Christmas break?