How to make the most out of reading week

Reading week comes as a much-needed break for students in the midst of a whirlwind of midterms and deadlines. Many students use the break as an opportunity to catch up on readings and assignments, while others strive to use the brief respite from classes to unwind. The McGill Tribune has compiled a list of suggestions for balancing productivity with relaxation and fun during the highly-anticipated week off.

Work on job applications

For the typical procrastinator, applications for summer jobs or internships tend to get pushed to the backburner during midterm season. Throughout the week, students can work on polishing resumes, researching potential job opportunities, or scheduling interviews. For those seeking personalized career advice, McGill Career Planning Service (CaPS) offers advice online to help students find jobs, get headshots, and build their portfolios. Additionally, for those interested in speaking to an advisor, CaPS will remain open during the break.

Get organized

Tidying up might feel like an annoying chore to complete during regular school hours, but reading week is a good opportunity to organize and clean up stress-free. Sorting through junk lying around the house, reorganizing the kitchen, and arranging old papers are all proactive steps students can take to stay on top of their personal lives when classes resume. Starting the week after the break with a clean living space will set a good precedent and mindset for the rest of the semester and help to reduce added stress.

Stay in town and explore the city

Reading week is the ideal time to get outdoors and explore a new part of Montreal, and, luckily, there is never a shortage of fun activities around the city. Make the most of the remaining winter weather by going skiing, sledding, or ice skating on Mont Royal. Montréal en Lumière is also hosting its 20th lights festival until March 3 in the Quartier des spectacles. Festival-goers can visit various shows, gourmet food stands, illuminated outdoor art exhibits, a ferris wheel, a slide, and a zipline. With a variety of exciting activities to offer, Montreal is the ultimate location for taking a staycation.

Take a break

Students deserve some downtime in between busy working weeks, so they shouldn’t feel like they need to maintain a hectic schedule or camp out at the library. Research shows that taking time off ultimately leads to higher levels of productivity, boosted creativity, and improved mental health. Get plenty of sleep, read for pleasure, or catch up on a few of the 2019 Oscar winners. Alternatively, unplugging for a day and leaving electronic devices behind can help to clear the mind. Research has shown that disconnecting from technology can help to improve sleep cycles, enhance personal relationships, and promote overall mental wellbeing.

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