Keeping Your Mind Sharp Over The Christmas Break

After months of attending lectures and tutorials (hopefully you went to most, if not all of them) and studying arduously, exams are finally behind us. Many of us probably just want to relax, have fun and not do or think about school-work until well into the new calendar year. owebeHHHowever, it would not be wise to shun all intellectually stimulating activities over the break. That being said, studying during the holiday is not necessary. The key is to not fall at either end of the spectrum but to find a happy medium.

How to achieve the ‘happy medium’

It is possible to rid yourself of the school stress and keep your brain razor sharp over the Christmas break. One way is reading. Reading throughout the break will definitely keep your mind from going dull. As said by Maryanne Wolf, director of the Center for Reading and Language Research at Tufts University, “We are forced to construct, to produce narrative, to imagine [when we read]. Typically, when you read, you have more time to think.”

It is understandable that after spending a semester doing exactly that, the last thing you want to do is read more. However, it does not have to be as bad as you think. According to neuroscience, our brains keep working even when we are reading something light and enjoyable like a magazine article, novel or even a comic book. So put down that law textbook and pick up the latest issue of Time or People magazine.

Writing is another great method to maintain your brain’s sharpness. Over the Christmas break try documenting your daily activities. You could choose the high-tech route and start a blog or go ‘old-school’ and write in a journal. The happenings in your life are not the only subject matter you can write about. If you enjoy creative writing, write short stories and poems. Write reviews of songs you have listened to and movies, music videos, and television shows you have watched. You could write reviews of the books you have read. Research a topic or person that interests you and write about that.

Also attempt to keep abreast with current affairs and discuss them with your friends and family either in person or over social media websites. The main thing to remember is this is your holiday, you have worked hard all semester and deserve to enjoy yourself. Thus, choose mind sharpening activities that you find pleasurable. Seasons Greetings.

© Christopher Goldson 2013


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