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What to Do On Winter Break: Relax but Stay Sharp

a young woman lies in the snow making a snow angel

Too often students feel driven to push themselves beyond their limits. As a result, they don’t really relax and recharge during school breaks. This is a mistake! Taking real breaks protects your health and even helps you get better grades. Here’s what to do on winter break so you can both relax and stay sharp.

5 Ideas for What To Do On Winter Break

It’s important to use your winter holiday as intended and actually take a break. That doesn’t mean sitting in your room watching movies all week. There are many ways you can give your brain and body a rest and go back to school feeling ready to go. 

1. Read a Book 

"Stories can cross the barriers of time, past, present, and future, and allow us to experience the similarities between ourselves and through others, real and imagined." - Pixar Screenwriter Andrew Stanton

Whether you love fantasy or nonfiction, reading allows you to put down your worries and escape from reality. At the same time, you may learn something new or learn to appreciate a different point of view. Time spent reading is never wasted. 

2. Journal

Like a muscle, you have to work at your writing in order to get better. Journaling is a great way to explore new styles, find your voice, and hone your skills. You can also use your journal to work through difficult problems, let go of any anxiety, and get something off your chest. 

3. Watch a Documentary

There are lots of documentaries out there on a wide variety of topics. You can find one on almost anything that interests you, from nature to history to social justice. Watching a documentary is a great way to relax while learning more about a topic you enjoy.

4. Stay On a Schedule

Don’t spend your vacation staying up late and sleeping the day away. While it may feel good on day one, you’ll quickly regret it when you struggle to wake up on the first day back. Go to bed on time and wake up at a reasonable hour. Your body and mind will feel rested and ready to return to school if you keep your routine.

5. Get Outside

Fresh air is good for your brain and body. Get outside and have fun with your friends and family. Take a hike, walk, or run outside if the weather is good enough. If it’s not, put on your favorite audiobook or podcast and head to the gym. 

Plan for Success in the New Year

With your extra time on winter break, set some goals for 2024. They can be academic, social, or hobby-related. Goals give you something to work towards in the New Year. If you have one large goal, break it down into smaller goals with achievable steps spread out across the year. 

For example, if your goal is to improve your grades, you can start by hiring a tutor, talking to your teachers, and rearranging your schedule to give you extra time to study. Having one or two goals to focus on will increase your motivation and give you direction. 

At LeadYouth, it’s our mission to transform kids into confident leaders and communicators for school, work, and life. We believe in using positive psychology and encouraging a healthy work/life balance. Learn more about our teaching philosophy here. 


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