a laptop connected to a screen with an image of a cat and a note book

With the holidays being a time of celebration for many, it’s normal to find that some of your study habits and routines might fall by the wayside. While it’s important to take a well-deserved break, it’s likely you’ll still need to dedicate some time to your academic work in preparation for the new year.

As part of #SleighYourStudies we asked our wonderful Student Advisors to share their motivational wisdom for staying on track with reading, assignments, and exam revision during the festive period…

Student Advisor Eoin

Eoin smiling at the camera

“My bedroom is my office, reading room, and place of rest all in one. If I’m working from home I can just roll out of bed, get to work, and (if it’s been a particularly taxing day) roll right back in again! Whilst I know that schedule sounds like a recipe for an existential crisis, it does seem to work.

My study tip is the earlier you can start work in the day, the better. I’m not a morning person, but every time I manage to get myself out of bed early, I’m glad I did. Once I’ve rubbed the sleep from my eyes and drank some coffee, I feel full of ideas and energy! Give it a go and see if it works for you.” — Eoin

a white desk with a laptop open on it, behind is a small stack of books and a black desk lamp. to the right is a red bookshelf full of books.

Student Advisor Darren

Darren in front of a bookcase

“Studying during the winter months can be challenging, especially when it’s cold and you may feel unmotivated. There are two things that I find have helped me to stay motivated and reach my goals, in turn allowing me to successfully meet deadlines and revise for exams.  

One is that I need to set myself a timetable to know when I am going to be working on assignments or exams and when I am going to spend time with family and friends, allowing me to achieve that work-life balance. The second is that when studying I like to feel all warm, cosy with a hot chocolate, with my favourite treats and dogs that keep me company. I find it really helps with my motivation to study. Whatever helps you to stay motivated this winter – let’s stay motivated together!” — Darren

Student Advisor Sam

Sam smiling at the camera

“My recommendation for staying motivated is to create a playlist of music that suits how you study best and to design your space to accompany your needs.

I bought a colour changing lightbulb so I could change the colour of my room to be softer on my eyes, which really helps when I’m trying to focus.” — Sam

a computer in a purple-lit room

Student Advisor Judea

Judea, wearing a black top, hoop earrings and a head band, smiling at the camera

“Avoid trying to multitask, as tempting as it can be checking your phone constantly isn’t going to help you get anything done. I use an app called Flora that pledges to plant trees whenever I stay focused on a goal as opposed to being distracted by my notifications.

An alternative is switching off your notifications or having your devices in a different room altogether!” — Judea

a laptop on a desk with a candle, diary, and UniSkills sticky notes

Student Advisor Michelle

Michelle, who has blonde hair and a black top, smiling at the camera in front of some greenery

“My tips for staying motivated during the winter break are to make your favourite drink and decide whether you prefer silence or background music; keep a planner handy to note important dates and decisions; take out some study skills books dedicated to improving your academic writing (Catalyst has a great selection!) and take regular breaks to rest and recharge (the Pomodoro technique is perfect for this).

Keep going, you can do it!” — Michelle

a laptop next to a set of study books with an ambient candle

Student Advisor Elizabeth

Student Advisor Liz, wearing a check dress and glasses, smiling at the camera

“My motivational tip is to ensure to organise your assessment writing/revision time over Christmas (using a physical or online diary/calendar) and plan in breaks to spend with family and friends.

Rest and rejuvenation are particularly important, which could involve, for example, winding down, watching TV, exercising or reading a fiction book.

Did you know Catalyst has an excellent reading for pleasure section?” — Elizabeth

a laptop connected to a screen with an image of a cat and a note book
a cat sat on a sofa arm, with a book and Christmas tree

Student Advisor Tom

Student Advisor Tom smiling at the camera

“Hi everyone, my name’s Tom and these are my motivational study tips to help you get over that lull between the holidays and the new year. I’m currently in my room, with my laptop behind me, a candle and a laptop.

I also have my TV which I use to put on background images to keep me engaged. Definitely have a nice setting so you can strive within your studies, but mostly for me it’s having that break, as the last thing you want to do it be burned out. Have a lovely holiday!” — Tom

a desk with a laptop and festive bear

If you have any tips you’d like to share or plans for staying motivated during the winter break, we’d love to hear them! Let us know by tagging us on Twitter @EHULearnService or Instagram @EHULibrary using #SleighYourStudies.