By Sophie Orchard, 3rd year BSc Psychology student.
University life, no matter what year you are in, is stressful. The looming deadlines are something that stresses everyone out, whether they show it or not.
Term 1 can be stressful. You’re getting used to being at uni, be that as a first year and your first time away from home and being independent or be that being a second or third year returning to a higher workload. You are starting modules that you may never have studied before or deepening your knowledge into one subject. It’s scary.
Getting into or getting back into the swing of things after a summer’s break is hard. Like most people I found coming back this year difficult because I knew that the workload and time commitments would be higher as a third year. I found myself staying up later than I normally would trying to lessen my to-do list; and as quick as I got things done, I would add 2 more tasks.
As time went on in this term, I realised that the way I was approaching things was not giving me time to myself or time away from university, something that I know is important in order to keep my mental health strong.
Now as quick as a flash, we have Christmas break. Usually, a time spent enjoying family traditions and spending time with friends. However, instead I have looming deadlines and work that needs to get done in order to be up to date for next term. I knew that I needed to create a plan of some sort in order for me to actually have a break.
For me, this plan consists of to-do lists and priority lists. I decided to write a list of everything that needed to get done and everything I would like to get done; then I created a list of the tasks in priority order so that I could see what needed to get done and what could wait. I find this the best way for me to approach this as then I can eliminate some of the pressure from myself.
By doing this, I can ensure that all my work that needs to be completed gets done but I am not constantly sat at my laptop trying to do absolutely everything when it isn’t necessary. I am able to have day’s off and spend time with friends and family doing Christmassy things. I am able to recharge my batteries ready for term 2 when deadlines come around quickly, and life gets more stressful.
I know that by making these plans, I am setting myself up well for term 2.
I would highly recommend to anyone struggling over this Christmas who feel that they need a break and don’t have time for one to write a list and make a priority list to see what they actually need to do rather than try to do everything. Rest, recharge and relax.
For support over the Winter break head to the StudentHub
For help, advice and resources whilst studying at NTU, take a look at the following for sources of support.
- Support from NTU
- Self-Care books in NTU’s libraries
- Silvercloud: SilverCloud is our online system designed to help with a range of mental health issues.
- Health and Wellbeing resources
- NTSU Information and Advice service
- Wellness in Mind: Advice and support for anyone in Nottingham experiencing issues with their mental wellbeing
- Student Minds or Student Space
- 10 Keys to happiness