Take Your Breaks Outside

Barry the Study Dog takes his breaks outside, in nature, where he can free his mind and sniff the smells.

Study Skills Series: The first Monday of every month, we give timely, practical, and original study skills advice. Timely means it’s especially useful during that month of the school year. Practical means it’s easy to act on. Original means we wrote it ourselves and you can only get it here.

Don’t just take breaks, take your breaks outside.

Work hard until feel yourself losing focus, which will probably be 30-60 minutes from when you started. If it’s been an hour, take 10-15 minutes off. If it’s only been half an hour, take 5-10 minutes off.

Whether you think you need one or not, you should definitely take a 10-minute break every hour. Unless you’re in the zone, or in your bag, or whatever they call it in your neighborhood, in which case, keep at it!

To make the most of your breaks, go outside. If you live in a suburban area, take a lap around the back yard and enjoy the Zen of scooping dog poop. If you live in an urban area, take a walk around the block and get some satisfaction by picking up litter. The point is to convene with nature.

Don’t worry about whether you can feel it working. It’s working. It doesn’t matter if you’re counting squirrels, trains, or mushrooms. If you’re out walking, you’re getting smarter.

This is the perfect time of the school year to reevaluate your priorities, refocus your efforts, and remember to take breaks. The sooner you stick to a break schedule that improves your efficiency, the sooner you’ll have more free time to take longer walks.

The ultimate goal is to have such great study skills that you have the luxury of taking naps after your walks, like Barry the Study Dog.

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