It is a fact that many of us go to college mainly to get a degree to get a job. To be able to graduate, we need to make good grades and to make those grades, it's important that we devote a majority of our time to studying. Phew! Seems like a process! Therefore, doing anything else besides getting buried in our books is a waste of time (so we think). However, that's not the case. To be able to stay focused and understand all that we're learning, we need breaks in between studying to do something relaxing and free of memorizing the components of the nucleus. No, I'm not suggesting that you slack off, because that will mean doom for your dream career. Here are some reasons it's advisable to take a step back from that school load.

1. To help you recollect what you have been studying.

Okay, this might seem like an irony because you're trying to get away from your books, but hold on, hear me out (or read me out). Just taking a few minutes away from your desk serves as a refresher. Instead of continuously digesting more information, stepping away helps you easily remember the little that you've learned. The more you pile on what you have already acquired, the easier it is to forget what you first studied. This little break serves as a rewind button before you learn any new material.

2. To build on your social skills. 

Most individuals believe college is all about the books. However, that is not the case when you go to the outside world seeking a job. It's true that grades matter and employers desire applicants who have enough knowledge about the tasks they will be given. On the other hand, having good relational skills is significant for getting a job as well. Getting out of the library to attend that talent show and meeting new people to talk to will boost your confidence. It's okay to attend the pre-pharmacy association meeting to be able to network with individuals who could be of potential help to applying for pharmacy school and quite frankly, hiring you in the future.

3. To unwind from all of that stress.

 

I don't know of anyone who loves studying so much that they will eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Okay, except for my high school AP Chemistry teacher who wishes to go to school for the rest of her life and probably get paid for it. I don't mean to be the bad guy who talks about how tiring college is and how draining it can be: college is fun, you get to learn new things and get your mind blown by all the extraordinary stuff you study. However, doing school work all the time can be stressful and to retain your sanity, it's important that you take some time off. Using five minutes to take a power nap in between a 90-minute study session could make the difference between getting frustrated over a material you are not understanding and immediately comprehending it at a first read. You get to regain energy to be able to keep up with the pace at which you want to go for your studies.

4. To help replenish the brain.


Give your brain a rest! The brain is an organ just like any of our other body parts that get tired when it is overworked. The brain has its limits on what it can retain and forcing it to acquire more details is just a waste of time because you are bound to forget as soon as you move on to the next paragraph. Go out, walk around your school campus and admire it. Express gratitude for being there and get to discover new and faster routes for those occasions where you want to be the early bird to class. It doesn't hurt to allow your brain to ease off by doing something else other than loading it with more information on what the amendments of the Constitution are.

5. To calm yourself down.

Many of us get frustrated when we overload ourselves with school work and in turn, we struggle mentally. There are periods where one student could have an assignment or test due every single day of the week and that could be exhausting. One sure way to prevent being overwhelmed by this is to do work earlier and not procrastinate. However, just taking a few minutes a day away from your books to simply sit and relax proves to soothe one’s health mentally. Performing yoga or listening to meditation music will help clear your mind before resuming to studies.

6. To develop new skills. 

Instead of spending each hour of your day browsing through your history textbook and memorizing all the dates and names of former presidents, why not use part of your time to learn how to write poems or stories? You could even write poetry from what you’ve been studying for you to easily remember the information. Similarly, you could write a song about your emotions, college or practice drawing or painting images that will lighten you up and keep you entertained and productive. Seriously, take some time off your desk to practice that new dance move that everyone cannot get enough of. It's important to develop skills that might or might not make sense to your major or school in general.

To get a lot out of your college experience, do yourself a favor and close the books for a few seconds a day to just relax and enjoy the people around you. I don't recommend being lazy and having any old "me time," though: just give yourself a break, not a full vacation! 

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