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Better Your mind, better your grades: the benefits of studying outside

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at U Mass Amherst chapter.

It is officially my favorite season of the year, fall. The weather is beautiful, yet very short-lived. I, for one, love to take advantage of the weather this time of year and spend as much of my time outside as possible, and here’s why you should too. 

Lower Your Stress Level

This time of year can be stressful for everyone, classes start to get more difficult and you have a midterm every week, it’s hard to find a calming moment. However, there is a way to reduce stress while still getting all that studying in, which is to work outside. Studying or doing homework outside can reduce stress as it lowers your blood pressure and stress hormones. Also, vitamin D has been proven to reduce anxiety and stress, which I know can consume many of us before difficult midterms. 

Better productivity

Connecting with nature has also been proven to improve our productivity levels. Spending time outdoors while doing work has been shown to better an individual’s productivity levels as it captures our attention, yet is not a large distraction to our work. Looking at screens all day can make us feel isolated and restless, so spending time out in nature or even taking a break from work to admire the outdoors is a very beneficial way to slow our minds and calm us down. 

Improved Creativity 

Working in the same spaces indoors all day can hinder our creativity and problem-solving skills. However, by taking our work outside we escape the routine way of thinking we have established within our indoor workspace and are able to think differently in a new environment. 

Higher Energy Levels 

Being outside surrounded by fresh air has proven to increase people’s energy levels and help them to feel less depleted. By working outside we are increasing our oxygen intake which helps us to feel more energized and aware of our surroundings. With these higher energy levels, our performance at work or our ability to study is greatly improved. When we have higher energy levels, we are bound to be more focused and retain more information, which is crucial when studying for an important exam. 

Better Immune System

Certainly not the last of the benefits to working outside but one of the most important to me, is that spending time outside can improve your immune system. This time of year when everyone I know is sick, I will take any chance I get to strengthen my immune system. As I mentioned before, being outside gives you more vitamin D, but it also helps us absorb other nutrients that help to improve our immune system and overall health.

Now many of these articles say that working outside year-round is proven to be beneficial, but personally, I won’t be spending much time outside from December through February, which is why I plan to take advantage of my time outdoors now. For me, I have found working outside to be a lot more peaceful and enjoyable than working indoors, and I highly recommend everyone try it out at least once or twice these upcoming weeks!

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Riley Sheridan

U Mass Amherst '26

Riley is a freshman at UMass Amherst and is majoring in Education. She loves reading, listening to music(especially Taylor Swift), the ocean, and spending time with friends and family!