If you’re like the average student, you consider winter break as a time to free your mind from all your school worries, enjoy some quality time with friends and family, and perhaps return to your alter ego—you know, the one that spends countless hours sitting on the couch watching pointless TV shows while munching on junk food. It’s perfectly acceptable to do things not related to school at all, but smart students know how to use the winter break to get some much-needed rest while staying productive at the same time.
Do Your Winter Cleaning
After ending a rough semester, you probably have a lot of stuff which you could do without. Clearing clutter isn’t the most exciting job, but it can be an exciting activity as you get to toss old papers, essays, and assignments which gave you a miserable time. It’s like establishing closure with things that hurt you in the past. But more importantly, de-cluttering allows you to become more productive for the next semester. What’s more, you could find stuff that you could sell for some nice extra cash. After all, you wouldn’t expect your parents to give you allowance over the winter break, right?
Prepare Your Spring Semester Calendar
You probably don’t want to think about school too much when on vacation, but it helps to allow a bit of time to prepare for the upcoming semester. This doesn’t have to consume a lot of time. Just whip out your calendar and mark down the most important dates. If you already have your syllabus on hand, keep track of due dates, presentations, projects, papers, and exams. Don’t stress yourself over all of this school stuff. It’s just a reminder that your winter break won’t last forever, so you better find ways to have some fun.
Spend Time Traveling
Speaking of fun, one activity students look forward to is traveling. Winter break proves to be an excellent time to travel with friends and family members. Of course, your destinations will be limited by your time and budget. But if possible, try to visit places you’ve never been to before. This provides a welcome escape from the confines of the university. Not to mention, you’ll probably get sick of your family even if you’ve missed them terribly. At least when traveling with them, you won’t get bombarded with silly questions you have no zero interest answering.
Fill Up Your Free Time
After a long and exhausting semester, you may be surprised at the amount of free time you have in your hands once winter break arrives. When you think about it, this is a nice problem to have. But it can drive you nuts when you find yourself with nothing to do. Frustration and boredom begin to set in. Create a list of things you can do—even with activities you’re not particularly fond of. For instance, volunteering for a cause can be an excellent way to use up your free time while doing something good for the community.
Look for a Job
Another way to make productive use of your is to apply for a seasonal job. During the holidays, many businesses are looking to add seasonal workers. These short-term opportunities may not pay generously, but they’re usually enough to cover some school expenses and travel costs. You might also make your parents proud in the process, showing them that you won’t be a burden to them for the rest of the holiday season.
Build an Online Portfolio
Since you’re probably spending an embarrassingly long time surfing the web, why not build your online portfolio? Take a break from liking Facebook posts, envying celebrities on Instagram, and watching cat videos on YouTube. An online portfolio is a modern way of showcasing your skills. If you’re into graphic design, for instance, you can build a website that contains samples of your work. This also applies if your skills aren’t visually-driven. Take your resume online and include videos, letters of recommendations, and links to past projects to make them more engaging.
Apply for Scholarships
If you’re having trouble with your finances, it’s worth looking into scholarship opportunities. It’s difficult to suffer from piles of student loan debt, but there are ways to ease things up for you if you’re just willing to put in the time and effort. Start by doing an online search and follow up by looking into groups or organizations you belong to. It might seem like a long shot, but you know it’s at least worth a try.
Shadow an Employee
Applying for an internship is a great way to get acquainted with the world you want to enter after leaving college. But even if you can’t intern at a company, at least find an opportunity to shadow an employee. This gives you the opportunity to learn what it’s like to land your dream job—what a typical day looks like, what skills are needed, and whether the things you study at school directly translate to real-world performance. From there, it’s up to you to make the adjustments and prepare for what lies in the future for you.
Keep Your Tools Sharp
The previous semester may have been your most difficult yet, but it’s worth reminding yourself that you’ve managed to survive it. That’s something to be proud of, even if your grades aren’t something to write home about. But as the adage goes: “learn from your mistakes.” Throughout your college years, you’ll find yourself being more resourceful. It’s up to you how to manage these resources and use them to your fullest advantage.
For example, making friends with people who create a positive impact on your school performance is an excellent way to continue performing well. This way, you always have somebody to rely on when things get a bit out of hand, especially when it comes to paperwork, assignments, and projects. And if you several deadlines are approaching, another resource you have in your arsenal is an online assignment assistance service Assignment Expert. Getting help from real professionals can prove to be a life-saver, putting the burden off your shoulders so you can manage your schoolwork without losing your sanity.