Tips for Productivity and Stress Management

students studying

We know exams are tough, so here’s some pro tips to help you through.

  1. Make a list of specific tasks you want (or need) to complete.
    Assign a timeframe and a deadline for these and map them out in a diary or calendar, planning for time to work on them. Still struggling to stay motivated? Come along to one of the Library’s Shut up & Study sessions.
  2. Multitasking doesn’t work – limit distractions.
    No checking of phones or social media! Your productivity depends on it. Focus.
  3. Stop occasionally to tidy up your desk or your surroundings.
    Psychological studies have found that a cluttered work environment impacts negatively on your psyche – if your work space is cluttered, so is your mind. Organise your environment and de-clutter. This has been shown to place you in a lighter and less “heavy-feeling” mental state.
  4. Take a nap. You’ve earned it!
    If you are feeling drained and tired, taking short naps can help refuel your energy. Studies have shown that 20 mins of nap time is optimum for quick recovery, without leaving you feeling drowsy. Feel free to try out the sleep pods in Fisher Library.
  5. Fuel your body with the right stuff.
    Healthy, low-GI food helps fuel your brain! Start your day off right with a free breakfast in Fisher Library. We’ll also be handing out free fruit and herbal tea across our libraries to keep you going.
  6. Just highlighting doesn’t work – get creative with your notes.
    This can help you process and make sense of the information you have taken note of during class time and during study. It allows you to form your own understanding of what you’re learning and summarise it in a way that makes sense to you. By the time you finish this process, it will mean that you have internalised, structured, and therefore learnt the content you are studying.
  7. Share some positivity with a friend or peer.
    What goes around comes around – give support and you will receive support in return. Send a kind message to a classmate or check out the positivity wall in the library and add a note to brighten a stranger’s day!
  8. Finally, schedule in time to take care of yourself.
    Go for a walk, breathe some fresh air, get some sunshine or head to one of the free yoga sessions running at Fisher Library. Regular exercise has been shown to increase serotonin and dopamine release (the “feel good” chemicals in your brain), which has proven to be the most effective “stress buster.” Head over to the Chill Out Zone in your nearest library for some games and craft to give your brain a break.


Combine these tips with some self-belief, a little determination and a good night’s sleep and you have yourself a solid approach to managing your stress and remaining productive.

We believe in you!

Check out all of the ways the library can support you this exam time.


students studying