We know that end of semester rush to finish projects and papers while trying to find time to study for finals has got you stressed out. You probably think that you don't even have five minutes to spare to take a breath and look up from your books. But you should! Small breaks actually help you do better! According to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (aka MIT) Center for Academic Excellence, taking regular breaks helps your brain stay alert and productive. Try our favorite activities below during your study breaks to help your brain stay sharp for your finals:
1. Coloring Books: Who says that colorings books are just for children? Anyone can do them! Taking a break to color is great because not only are you doing something creative, but you're also giving your brain something different to work on. If you only have a few minutes to take a break, we highly suggest this one! And with the wide variety of coloring books (there are even math pattern coloring books!) available in stores and online, you're sure to find one that you'll like.
2. Bubble baths: You're studying hard; you deserve a break! After you've finished writing your longest, hardest essay, take a few extra minutes to treat yourself to something nice. Spa’mazing has a chemistry kit that lets you mix your own bubble bath! It’s a fun break that will make you feel like you're at a luxurious spa. 30 minutes is plenty of time to soak in the bubbles and once you're out of the bath, you'll probably be rejuvenated and ready to start your next essay or project.
3. Exercise: We're not saying you have to train like you're trying to make the 2016 Olympic team (if you are, shoot us an email; we definitely want to feature you), but a few minutes of exercise can help you clear your mind and energize you. Take the dog for a quick, brisk walk, shoot some hoops or do a little bit of yoga alongside a video on YouTube. Whatever it is, make sure you're getting up and moving. 10 minutes of exercise will get you energized for your next hour of studying. Remember to drink water, too, so you stay hydrated and alert. Our go-to app for that is Waterlogged. It’ll track your water consumption and even remind you throughout the day to have a glass.
4. Chores: Okay, we know this is probably not anywhere near the top of your To-Do list, but it is an activity that is productive! Whether it's hanging your laundry, taking the garbage out or doing the dishes, you're accomplishing a task that would otherwise take more of your time later. Plus, helping out around the house without being asked to do it first is probably going to make your parents very happy (remember they have stress, too). Win-win!
5. Board Games: Have a sibling who you're "too busy" to play with? Use one of your study breaks to play a STEM game like Robot Turtles Game or Code Monkey Island . Your sibling will appreciate that you took time to play a game with them and you'll get to have fun, too! Just don't get too carried away that your little break turns into a game night and you completely forget to study.