It’s deadline season, and maybe you’re currently holed up in bed binging on Netflix. Deadlines are tough. You look back to the relaxation of Freshers. Maybe it is all just getting a little too much for you. But it’s important to remember that it’s perfectly normal to get a little overwhelmed here and there, and it’s okay!
Getting a degree isn’t all fun and games. Sleepless nights spent hunching over your keyboard while drinking your fiftieth coffee is par for the course. But, allowing yourself to get stressed out can seriously affect your well-being. Here are our top tips for stepping back, taking a deep breath, and taking care of yourself:
1. Deadline week is hellish if left unorganised. Take five minutes to make a simple, easy to read to-do list. Include everything – essay deadlines, exam notes, do laundry, go food shopping, pay bill, etc. It may seem detrimental to remind yourself of how much you've got to do but trust us, it helps to get all those whirring thoughts and worries out of your head and onto a piece of paper. This means you can step away from your desk, safe in the knowledge that they’ll be waiting patiently for you when you decide you’re ready to get cracking.
2. Hydration helps! It’s so easy to forget to keep drinking water when you’re working, and chances are you feel a bit sluggish and spotty from dehydrating caffeine. Always keep fresh water with you and keep sipping.
3. Leading on from your list, construct a nice, neat timetable with a vague plan of when you’ll need to work on certain things. Set yourself achievable goals, for example, revising one chapter or writing 500 words of an essay per day. Taking on too much at a time can really add unnecessary stress, but hitting reasonable targets is a great feeling.
4. Staying positive is key. Look at everything with an optimistic spin.
Bad Mentality: ‘Today I wrote 600 words, but it’s a 3000 word essay and I still have so much to do.’
Good Mentality: ‘Today I aimed to write 500, and I wrote 600! I should finish it in a few days and I feel FANTASTIC!’ etc.
5. Allow some evenings off to spend with your housemates or friends. Do something stress relieving, like watching a film or cooking dinner together. You’ll all feel better for it!
6. If you’re into it, go to the gym! Exercise releases endorphins that relieve lots of stress, and you’ll feel better for it too. Morning exercise generally leads to more productivity during the rest of your day.
7.Think about the future – deadline season won’t last forever! Look forward to your post-essay or post-exam celebrations, and remember it’ll all be worth it when you graduate!