So, SPM had just ended for batch 96, my one year junior. I am happily to say, congratulations in making through one of the hardest exam in Malaysia and the most importantly, for making through the school life.
This post is more to an advice, or opinion, that I would like to share for all SPM leavers who are having their months long break (well, except for PLKN lucky ones and January intake of some colleges or university). Yet, this post caters to all, since you can still make the use of the remaining holidays for some of the things that you can do.
What to do?
1) Get a driving license
The earlier the better. It helps you to get around easier, being more mobile than the public transportation. Considering if you are not a one hit wonder (or even if you are), when you register early for driving class, you can get your lisence early even if you fail for few times. You need not to worry about your college or anything that could clash with your driving classes or test.
2) Hit the gym
Considering you are having 6 or 7 months of holiday, gym is a great place to spend most of your time. To bulk up or to have good body shape, a lot of efforts need to be put indeed. You only need 2 or 3 weeks to get used to the gym and the rest is history. Go on consistently for half a year and you will be satisfied with the results.
3) Go to some English courses
Of course! English is paramount in the world right now, especially for your upcoming interviews. How are you sure you can be a good interviewee if you are rusty? Even if you are good, is good a good enough to woo the interviewer(s)? Go to these courses. Learn to speak better and communicate with others effectively. Plus, at British Council, you can make new friends with some foreigners.
A lot. Books, magazines, articles and journals. This is the only time you can read without needing to worry about the boring stuffs you need to read for exams. Go to book fair and buys some books. Learn about the current issues through intelectual magazines and internet articles.
5) Do outdoor activities
(and by the meaning of going outdoors, lepak-ing with friends at shopping malls does not fall into this category). PLKN trainees get the oppurtunity to do some cool outdoor activities but why not you? There are many outdoor activities you can enjoy with your friends such as paintball, rock climbing, hiking (Broga Hill, hands down) or participate in some marathons. Or Futsal.
There is a lot more things outside than inside of your room. Seriously, envisaging the fantasy world through video games is cool but the reality world is awesome too. Go out there and enjoy the magnificent sceneries or places that you have overlooked on. No need to go overseas and spend more money (unless if you are loaded). Why need to spend Euro, Pound and Dollars when you can spend your Ringgit and still enjoy on what you have spent on? Malaysia is beautiful. Ever wonder why tourists come to Malaysia every year? Try to be like one and you will realize how fascinating Malaysia is.
7) Learn new things
Have you been in a situation where you ought to forget to do some things you want to do because you are too busy with studying? Worry no more. This is a perfect time to complete all the due accomplishment. Many things you can learn in this long holiday such as playing guitar, new language or drawing. You will be amazed at how much you can improve since you do not have many things to worry about.
What better way to get extra money than to work? While the long holiday might be spent well, a lot of money could be spent as well. Even if, they were spent wisely, they are not refundable (duh). I have my own judgement of places of work. I would prefer bookstore like MPH or Kinokuniya than restaurants. But if you really do not have much to do (or having an insufficinet finance), working is a good option you can take.
What NOT to do?
1) Sleep the whole day
Come on! Sleep? You had enough of sleeping during your school life, even during class! Seriously you want to spend your holiday by sleeping?
Human beings’ main cause of failure. You did not perform or accomplish much because of procrastination. So why would you do it now?
Most schools have wifi. Your phone has internet plan. Do you really need to spend your holiday (and the internet plan) by stalking others at social networking sites?
4) Playing video games
This might be hard to resist but spending the whole holiday with your darling PS3 or XBox makes you have no life. Even the gamers know it well.
Seriously? For once in a while, it’s okay. Meeting your old friends is nice but loitering around with the same people everyday at some shopping malls or down the streets? Not a good thing.
All in all, plans will stay as plans if you do not execute them. Try to plan out your holiday well. At the very least, make a checklist of what you want to do. You’ll be amazed of what you have missed out and you can accomplish.
*the writer is one of the lucky few who got the love letter to join the PLKN. He chose to enrol in a prestigious yet isolated university in January rather than spending his holiday at some jungle. His holiday was cut short due to that thus he is quite envious with spm leavers who have the months long holiday. He is also baffled by some of them who wasted their holiday just like that.*