I don’t know what it’s like for other students, but for me December is a hot spot for deadlines. I have a few essays due in either before or after Christmas, and some into January as well. This can be really stressful for the Christmas period when all you really want to do is stroll around markets and drink hot chocolate, and do literally nothing for the holiday. So I’ve come up with a few techniques to help focus when writing assignments, and perhaps bribe yourself into staying on track.
Put Your Phone on Silent
Or even turn it off, put it on Do Not Disturb or on airplane mode. I find it so distracting when my phone is popping off every few minutes with a new notification from a different social account. If I know that I need to knuckle down and get on with some work, it’s my first go to because once you eliminate the distracting call of the outside world – you really can focus.
Set Aside Time
It’s a well known fact that December is a particularly busy month with seeing family before Christmas, work Christmas meals and social events. Which is why it’s more important than ever to be organised with your time, and make sure that you are setting aside time to continue working on assignments. That way you can make sure that you are prioritising work and being social and seeing friends – which is important too.
Work With Friends
One of the reasons it feels so horrible working in December is because you want to see your friends before Christmas, especially if you’ll all be moving back home after the semester finishes. So schedule a study session where you can all go to the library together at a certain time and do some work together. Not only do you still get to see your friends while focusing on work, but you’ll also be able to get a second pair of eyes and some feedback on what you’re working on.
I think of this as my bribery technique, which works for me but maybe not for others! I’ll tell myself to sit down and write however many words for a certain essay and when I’ve reached that particular point, I can take a break for something chocolatey to eat or watch an episode of a TV show. Again, maybe that won’t work for everyone else but I find myself needing that little something to look forward to.
It’s horrible catching the cold/flu in the winter, especially when you need to be working on something and you have a deadline coming up. So make sure that you’re bundling up when you leave the house, you’re staying hydrated and overall looking after your health while it’s cold. It makes it a lot easier to work if your body is feeling looked after, and you’re warm and have plenty to drink.