Exams Stress Support Wellbeing

What to do if you’re stuck in a revision rut

The winter break is over and exams are nearly upon us, which can cause a a bit of revision panic. You may be struggling to get past a particular topic, or just feel like nothing is going in anymore. Whatever it is, here are some of our favourite strategies for getting yourself out of the rut and back on the revision train!

Take a break

Hunching over your laptop for hours on end trying to cram everything in isn’t the best strategy for effective revision. It’s recommended that you take a short break – of around 10 minutes – every hour.

Make sure you get away from the desk and give your eyes a rest – you won’t feel like you’ve had a break if you sit in the same position browsing on your phone! Stretch your legs, go and make a drink or snack, get a few minutes of fresh air. Whatever you choose to do, regular breaks will boost your productivity.

Get some exercise

Even better than just stepping away from the desk is doing something active. Schedule in some exercise – whether it’s going for a brisk walk or a more intense workout – and you’ll give your energy levels a boost. As well as allowing you to switch off from revision, exercise releases endorphins that can help to reduce stress and improve your mood.

Sporticipate is running a two-week programme of healthy activities from 15 – 26 January, so make sure you find out what’s on offer.

Do something you love

Don’t forget about all of the things you enjoy while you’re revising! It’s impossible – and ineffective – to study continuously. Why not reward yourself by doing something that always makes you feel good? Visit some friends, go to the cinema or head out for dinner. Doing something you enjoy will get you out of your negative head space and you’ll return feeling refreshed and ready to learn.

Mix up your revision techniques

Some revision techniques will work for you, and some won’t. Don’t waste your time trying one approach if you feel like you’re getting nowhere – there are lots of different ways to revise! Check out Exam Extra for ideas.

Make a plan

We’ve all heard this one – make a revision plan (and stick to it). Don’t spend too long on your plan, it doesn’t have to be too detailed – but having a rough guide of what you want to achieve each day will help you to stay focused when you’re in a bit of a revision rut. Don’t forget to build in rewards and time for doing other things (see above)!

Tidy desk, tidy mind

A desk covered in scraps of paper, half-drunk cups of tea all over the place…not the best environment to be working in. Why not have a productive study break and organise your study space space so that you’re free from distractions?

BUT don’t get carried away….your books do not need to be in alphabetical order, nor does your wardrobe need colour coding. When it comes to tidying, there is a fine line between productivity and procrastination.

Sleep on it!

There is nothing better for the brain than a good rest. If you are still studying late into the night, you’re more likely to make mistakes or get stressed out by trying to cram. Stop revising, relax for a bit and go to bed. You’ll feel much better in the morning.

 

If you’re really feeling the pressures of your upcoming exams, check out our tips for managing your stress and anxiety.