3 Tips for staying focussed if you’re spending Easter at home

Keeping the focus required to churn out 1st-worthy work and plough through stacks of revision can be a colossal task. Now add copious amounts of chocolate, old friends who want to catch up and family members who expect detailed recounts of the term (difficult when all you did was go to Crisis and sleep) and you have the perfect description of Easter at home- plus, a task that’s 10x harder. But never fear, beating the stress and keeping motivated doesn’t have to be such a chore if you stick to these 3 tips…

  1. Exercise: I know, I know, you’ve heard it all before. ‘Exercise beats stress’ isn’t exactly a new concept but it is one that’s scientifically proven to have your back. I’m not suggesting you go from a 10 min jog once a month in David Ross to hitting the gym 6 times a week à la every fitness blogger ever, but getting out of your desk chair once in a while won't hurt. You could easily go for a walk with some of your pals (killing 2 birds with one stone here-catch ups and exercise) or pop out for a jog which are great ways to avoid buying a gym membership. So, now you’re warming to the idea, here’s the science. Stress releases hormones like Cortisol which lower the efficiency of what they view as ‘unnecessary’ functions in the body like… the immune system (Just me that thinks this is vital?). When you pop on your Gymshark leggings and get active, not only do you get a surge of feel-good endorphins, negative hormones (Cortisol, we're looking at you) are consequently decreased. Maybe next time you find yourself cancelling that Zumba class, think of the effects that short hour could have on your mental and physical wellbeing. 
  2. Change your working location: I, for one, know that it drives me insane when I sit in the same location all day every day doing work. At uni, you’re presented with a plethora of locations to choose from when planning long work seshes. You’ve got George Green, Hallward, Teaching and Learning, Portland, Clive Granger, Pope, your desk. But at home, it can feel like the only options are your bed or the kitchen table- not the best places for concentration. It’s easy to forget that most towns have public libraries which are free to join and have great silent work stations and coffee shops, though VERY expensive, can offer a different working environment. There’s also an amazing service called SCONUL which allows students to apply for access to any university library in the country. So, if your city has its own university, why not take advantage of their facilities. And, fingers crossed, if the weather picks up we can all head to the park, flashcards in one hand, sunnies in the other. 
  3. Eat healthy: Again, I’m aware that this is a slightly mumsy recommendation, but getting your 5-a-day is a great way to stay on track. I get it, all you want to do when stress hits is eat a whole tube of Pringles and devour a share-bar of chocolate (definitely not speaking from experience there) but this just decreases your energy levels and subsequently, your marks. The brain uses 20% of the bodies’ calories so it’s ridiculously important to keep it fuelled when you’re spending long periods of time concentrating. Being at home, for most people, comes with the luxury of having meals cooked for you- or, at least, a less busy and cleaner kitchen. Why not take advantage of this and ask for healthier dishes or spend some time making them yourself in a calmer environment that’s rarely witnessed in student houses. Some of the best foods to incorporate into your diet for brain power maximisation are oily fish, berries, nuts and seeds, whole grains, broccoli and eggs as well as dark chocolate, it is Easter after all!

There you have it, stick to these easy tips and heading home for Easter need not have you heading for the hills!