Navigating Christmas College Struggles

A Student's Guide to De-Stressing Over the Christmas Break 


As the holiday season approaches, students find themselves caught in the whirlwind of festivities and, unfortunately, looming college work. Balancing the Christmas season with academic responsibilities can be challenging, but there are always effective ways to de-stress and make the most of your Christmas break. Let’s explore a few strategies to help you maintain your sanity while juggling college assignments during the festive season.

Prioritize and Plan

The first step to a stress-free holiday break is to prioritize your tasks. Take a deep breath, evaluate your workload, and create a realistic plan. Identify the most critical assignments and deadlines and allocate specific time slots for work. By organizing your responsibilities, you'll gain a sense of control and reduce the feeling of being overwhelmed. The unexpected can happen so always try to give yourself a little more time than you think you'll need. That way you won't be caught off-guard.

Set Realistic Goals

Instead of aiming for the impossible, set realistic goals that allow you to make steady progress without burning out. Break down larger tasks into smaller, manageable steps. Completing smaller goals gives you a sense of accomplishment and motivation to tackle the next challenge. Remember, Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither should your assignments be.

Create a Relaxing Study Environment

Transform your study space into a haven of tranquillity. Decorate it with festive lights, add some holiday scents, and play soothing music. A comfortable and visually appealing workspace can make studying more enjoyable and reduce stress. Make sure to take short breaks to stretch and rejuvenate your mind.

Practice Mindfulness and Self-Care

Incorporate mindfulness techniques into your routine to stay present and alleviate stress. Whether it's through meditation, deep breathing exercises, or a simple walk in nature, taking time for yourself is crucial. Additionally, prioritize self-care activities like getting enough sleep, eating well, and engaging in activities that bring you joy.

Stay Connected with Loved Ones

Christmas is a time for family and friends. Don't isolate yourself completely with your books; make time for the people who matter most. Engaging in holiday traditions and spending quality time with loved ones can provide much-needed emotional support and recharge your mental batteries.

Reward Yourself

Set up a reward system for completing tasks. After finishing a challenging assignment or reaching a study goal, treat yourself to a small reward. It could be watching a favourite holiday movie, indulging in a festive treat, or simply taking a moment to appreciate your accomplishments.

Embrace the Holiday Spirit

Infuse your study sessions with a touch of holiday cheer. Take short breaks to sip on hot cocoa, listen to festive tunes, or engage in holiday-themed activities. By embracing the holiday spirit, you'll inject a sense of joy into your routine, making the workload feel less daunting.


While juggling college work during the Christmas season may seem daunting, implementing these strategies can help you navigate the holiday hustle with ease. Remember, it's crucial to find a balance between work and play, allowing yourself the opportunity to enjoy the festive season while also meeting your academic responsibilities. Cheers to a stress-free and joyful Christmas break.

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Send tips or suggestions to Author: Robert Joseph Kelly, postgraduate student of business management at Maynooth University.