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Studying in the Rain and How to Enjoy It

Date:23 October 2021
Rainbow spotted in Groningen
Rainbow spotted in Groningen

Picture this: you’re sitting in a cosy corner, a warm cup of tea is on the table in front of you next to your textbooks and lecture notes, while the soft patter of raindrops can be heard falling against your window. I don’t know about you, but this is probably my ideal environment for studying.

Exam period at the UG has officially begun, and while this can be a stressful time, it’s also a time to slow your rhythm down a little and focus on studying while enjoying the little things – like the rain. I know that rain is something that people don’t usually like, but we’ve come up with some really simple tips that can take your rainy study experience from grey to yay (yes, I made that joke…)

1.  Free study sounds!

Personally, I like to play some calming sounds in my headphones while I study – like whale noises or the sound of a river running through a forest. The great thing about the gentle rain in the Netherlands is that it provides the perfect ‘white noise’ needed for me to calm my brain and summarise my lectures or even write a blog (like I’m doing now). The occasional grey sky actually makes the perfect background for me to feel like I am the main character in a movie scene pursuing my dreams of becoming a legal professional. Basically, like Elle Woods in Legally Blonde, but I’m a guy studying while listening to the rain against my window (practically the same thing…right?).  I definitely recommend sitting next to a (closed) window the next time it rains so you can get the full influencer student / study Instagrammer experience.

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Sitting inside reading your textbooks as rain splatters on your window.

2. Cosy study spots:

I think that making a cosy study spot can really improve study motivation.  A calm environment is super important to ensure that you can fully concentrate on the work that you’re doing. What’s even better is a cosy environment – a scented candle, a nice cup of tea and a warm blanket are autumn essentials for my study sessions on days that I don’t want to leave the house.  I have even seen some pumpkin-spice scented candles being sold in stores, and I can’t lie, I am very tempted to buy one… 

If you’re feeling like getting some human interaction in a bigger environment – the UB (University Library) is the best place to go. The UB has over 500 study spots as well as some pretty cool coffee corners with views of the whole city! There isn’t really a better place to get some work done and escape the rain.  (Take a look at our Instagram Reel about studying in the UB).

3. How to beat the rain:

The rain falls quite often during the Autumn, but that doesn’t mean you have to *fall* too! What I’ve discovered while living in the Netherlands is that so many things are set up so that you can avoid the rain as much as possible.You’ll be able to time leaving the comfort of the UG lecture halls with going home perfectly in the 15-minute gap in the rain predicted on the app. This makes dealing with heavy rain so much easier! Useful rain radar apps like “Buienradar” will help you stay ahead of the rain. 

Although it is not always necessary to buy a full rainsuit, getting a waterproof jacket will definitely make your commute from home to your exam halls a lot easier. You can even pick up a rain poncho and some rain pants at most stores. (Tip: Hema and Decathlon usually have a good selection).

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Walking around the city in your new rain jacket be like:

4. Keeping your mind clear and body active:

It can be easy to get bogged down with exam stress and the change of season. But making sure that you feel clear and active is a great way to maintain your motivation during the exam season. Participating in some form of sport is a great way to clear your mind in between study sessions and keep yourself fit. Although we tend to isolate ourselves a little when the weather gets grey - it's really important to keep fit. Joining a sport / exercise class at the ACLO is a great way to achieve this, and a good opportunity to make new friends! To read more about sports at the UG, take a look at this blog.

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Participating in a fitness class after eating all your study snacks

Although this period can be a stressful one for students, the Student Services Center (SSC) is offering courses and helpful tips for students experiencing stress! As a part of the SSC’s Well-being weeks, you can sign up for some courses on helping you maintain a clear mindset. As a third year student, I think these courses are a great way to set yourself up for future success, the skills learnt in maintaining your well-being are sure to come in handy throughout your academic and professional life. Students can take a look at this link for more information.

I hope these few tips will help you turn the rainy exam period from grey into yay! Do you have any tips for your fellow students? Let us know in the comments. 

About the author

Hi there! I am Luc, a South African student of International and European Law. In my spare time you will find me consuming Netflix, playing guitar and singing, cycling around, spending time with friends and whispering “what a cutie” to every dog and cat that happens to walk past me in Groningen!


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