It's that time of year again when exams are looming and most people are in full-on revision mode (unless you are one of the lucky ones that have already finished for summer!). This time can be really difficult, especially regarding mental health, as it's easy to neglect yourself and your needs by studying constantly. Which definitely isn't healthy.
So I thought I'd do a little post on the things that help me stay sane during revision...
This is so obvious, which is why I put it first, but breaks are so important. I try to take a 10 minute break every half an hour or so, to check my social media or have a snack, but find out what time schedule works for you. Just make sure your breaks are regular and not every 5 hours or something ridiculous!
2) Treat yourself
Treats during your breaks are always great, such as a snack or a bit of Netflix. However I also think it's important to treat yourself in the evenings after a long day working, by taking some time out by yourself to relax and do whatever you need to do to look after yourself. Online shopping is also a good treat too... Exams are an expensive time!
3) See your friends/family
Do not let revision take over your life - arrange time to see your friends and family, otherwise you will go slightly crazy. Take this time to relax and not think about your upcoming exams.
4) Switch up where you revise
I have found that revising in different rooms of the house definitely helps me concentrate. Even switching up revising between Liverpool and home is useful for me - and sitting at a desk or at my bed. Or even outside with this sunny weather.
5) Have a plan
Have a vague plan of what you need to revise, and when. I like making lists, but you could use a diary, your phone calendar, or even just have a rough idea in your head. Having daily goals makes revision easier to stick to, but don't beat yourself if you don't reach them - let them be flexible. Don't worry if you deviate from your schedule slightly.
6) Have something to look forward to
For me, this is my medical elective (Fiji, Australia and Bali!) that I go on two days after exams, which I am extremely excited for! But it could be anything, from having a small plan with a best friend, or a holiday booked. Having something to look forward to definitely keeps me going during the exam period.
I find study break naps so useful. Sometimes I'll take a couple of hours out to nap, just because I need it. Your brain is using a lot of energy up during revision - so if you feel tired, let your body sleep and don't ignore it.
8) Understand how you work best
Work out how you revise best, and stick to it. Whether that's in a group or on your own; in the morning or in the evening; flash cards or spider diagrams - stick to it.
The best portion of your life will be the small, nameless moments you spend smiling with someone who matters to you.