As October nears its end, we begin another important transition congruent with the fall season: the holidays! While this time of year is an important one for family and friends, it can also be the most difficult time for CPA candidates to stay on track, as they are typically removed from a routine study schedule.
So whether you’re going out of town or hosting a family get-together at your place, make sure you continue to be productive and stay on course by following these 5 tips for studying during the holidays!
1. Plan ahead
The best thing you can do is be prepared for what’s to come by planning ahead. Make sure you have all your necessary study materials and make tweaks to your study schedule if you have to in order to accommodate days or times when you know you won’t be able to sit down to the books. Also take into consideration outside factors that will impact your study time, such as getting plenty of sleep, buying a pre-made dish instead of preparing it from scratch, spreading out your holiday shopping now instead of waiting last minute, etc.
2. Use on-the-go study materials
If you’re going out of town by car or plane, all things digital are going to be your best friend! We highly recommend investing in audio lectures and portable study aids such as flashcards and multiple choice question applications. Download them onto your phone or iPad and have them readily available and charged so that you always have a productive study aid in unconventional study times and areas.
3. Study extremely early
Wake up at 4 or 5am to begin studying. We know it’s a lot easier said than done, but trust us—you’ll be a happier person if you’re able to get your studying out of the way when everyone’s sleeping rather than smack in the middle of the afternoon or evening when everyone’s enjoying roasting chestnuts on an open fire.
4. Increase accountability
Stick to your study plan and don’t make excuses for straying off track—even if Grandma Sally really did just buy everyone a puppy! Hold yourself responsible for your actions and execute them accordingly. If you want something done right, you have to do it yourself!
5. Reward yourself
And last but not least, remember to reward yourself. It’s the holidays, after all! Indulge in an extra slice of pumpkin pie or take a break and enjoy the company of loved ones after meeting your study goals. You’ll find that making a small reward system for yourself not only reinforces a positive learning experience, but also makes you a happier person overall.
We hope these study tips help you get through the hectic and fun holidays!