How to Survive Reading Week

Reading Week can be a very tricky thing. You’re super stressed during the two-to-three weeks leading up to this magnificent break, yet all you can do is keep your eye on that sweet prize of home made meals and your own bed for a change. Let’s face it, all university students are drooling for a bit of freedom from those midterms, essays and group projects; but once that Friday comes, all you can think about is the ride home and hopefully a warm greeting by your family, and maybe the family dog. But what happens when you get back to school from your week off and you realized that you completely wasted your time and are absolutely drowning in readings and assignments and you forgot that you have 4 midterms this week and two happen to be on the same date?

In all my four years at Nipissing, I have finally figured out how to survive the post reading week chaos. I’ll give you the spoiler – you actually do your readings on “reading” week! I know, it was a hard code to crack, but three and a half years in honours Physical Education finally came through. I’ve always been so busy when I’m home catching up on everything – family, friends, sleep, you name it. But every year when I got back to school I was swamped and stressed to the max. So trust me, getting as much work as you can done on this break will actually help you tremendously in the long run. You will be more prepared for your exams because you have had the time to study, you will be getting yourself a head start on your assignments which will give you better time management. Believe me, if you can manage to take your eyes away from those Friends reruns for just a couple hours a day, it will benefit you so much more when you return. Not only will your body thank you for all of the caught up sleep and healthy home made eating, but your grades will thank you for being more prepared.

But don’t get me wrong, that’s not all you should be doing on your reading week! After all, it’s a break for a reason. Do yourself a favour and take the time to de-stress from school. Go on that wine tasting tour with the girls you haven’t seen in ages. Get physically active – plenty of studies suggest that becoming more physically active will help you in daily activities and it releases helpful hormones and chemicals in your brain allowing you to perform better in school. Visit Grandma and Grandpa for lunch (trust me, it would mean so much more to them than you think), and stay up late watching guilt free Netflix – we all know that’s not a feeling that happens frequently. It is so important to have a healthy break to keep you balanced in school.

So, go enjoy yourself on that break! Have some fun, catch up with friends and family, take a small weekend vacation and get a break from your professors and your classes, but don’t forget to actually do some work for yourself this reading week, you’ll thank yourself instead of the usual kicking yourself procrastination ritual you have developed.

– Alexis