Well, prepare yourself some liters of coffee or tea, wear comfortable clothes, shut down all the electronic devices that can distract you and say good bye to the real world, oh, remember to store the food, drink and other necessities, prepare all the essential tools like laptop, pens or notebooks, etc. Sleep when you feel tired but remember to put the clock to wake you up after 30 minutes to 1 hour.
But…………. Wait a minute! What do you study for more than 10 hours for? If you only need to do this for once or twice at most in your lifetime, I won’t talk about this matter anymore and you can stop reading here (Anyone of us may have to have that crazy day of cramming, trying to get everything into our head for some stupid reasons and I totally can relate to it). However, if you intend to do it for a longer time, from your question, it can be understood to be for everyday, I really want you to stop and take time for reflections.
I know that there are many difficult and tough things that you always have to study and never feel enough. I don’t know what you study for so I will take this from a neutral point of view. In my opinion, whatever you are studying or your goals are, you should not let life be taken away by just sitting still and studying all day (10 hours plus 8 hours for sleeping and about 3 hours for eating and doing some basic stuff hardly leave you anytime for other activities). Nevertheless, it sounds unconvinced by just hearing someone telling you right or wrong, isn’t it? Let me share with you my own story and hope that you have the best judgment.
I was there as, just like where you are now, I did want to study like crazily for everything. When I’m at high school, it’s mostly for the grades and my pride. When I entered university, I feel lost and grades become less important to me. It’s not like they don’t play any role in my life anymore, it’s just not enough, I want to learn more about life, about people and myself. I started looking for more and I was totally mind-blown, MOOC courses, TED, Khan Academy,… etc, they brought me to a completely new world. Since that day, I have tried my best to get everything into my head. Sometimes it seems to be going well but after a while, things quickly fell apart, I just had a pretension that I know something when I don’t know anything at all. Recently, I found out where I went wrong:
I didn’t have time to “digest” my information so it’s just information in the end, quickly faded away as I didn’t spend time letting it growing strong in my real life. The case you being a genius is quite rare so your brain will likely be like mine, it cannot recall information well if you just try to stuff it for quantity
I neglected my own health by sitting for hours at table. Trust me, the worst thing you can do to your body is being sedentary all the time, your body just needs to move around, experiences different motions and it’s not something easy to have when you decide to study for more than 10 hours a day. As a result, at the age of 20, I feel like an old man.
Friends don’t run away from you just because you are a worm or a freak but they cannot stay as your true friends when you don’t spend time for them. The same things go to other kinds of relationships such as family, lovers and community as a whole. By devoting my nearly my whole time (in the past) to studying, my relationships with others are quite limited and I still regret not spending more time with people who are important to me.
It is my story, and, well, I hope that you haven’t champed at the bit yet. My advice is that everything will be better little by little, maybe, for now, I’m now at the university, looking at my friends makes me feel like an outcast for saying this to you. Everyone is rushing and trying to get more and more, crazily cramming before exams, continuously compare and compete, and here I am, just an onlooker. There is a bunch of things to chase for, you will have a long life after that, don’t shorten it just for some temporary results.
This answer originally appeared on this Quora question on Studying.