With less than two weeks left of the fall semester, finals are approaching, assignments are increasing, and motivation is decreasing. Everyday I get home from class and bury my face into my laptop and textbooks, usually forgetting to eat dinner, getting a head ache from all of the studying (and probably lack of food, too), and I haven’t been leaving my room or taking any breaks either. From working, keeping up with my assignments, and everything else going on in my crazy life, I am both am physically and mentally exhausted.
Although I’ve worked really hard to get the grades that I have, I feel guilty for doing anything that gets my mind off of my school work, even if its just watching tv or going out with William for awhile — and I cant be the only one who feels this type of interpersonal guilt. And although this feeling is inevitable for most of us college students, we need to keep in mind that taking care of ourselves during this time is very important to avoid student burnout. My studying habits aren’t healthy. I am stressed beyond belief, and the pressure us students endure can cause our stress levels to get to unhealthy levels, which causes us to feel more sick, fall behind, or cause feelings of defeat and hopelessness. Student burnout is a real thing – not an excuse. It’s an emotional, mental, and sometimes physical problem.
I’ve learned that prioritizing is a good way avoid burnout, so you wont waste time on unnecessary tasks, which will give you more time to do things you want. There are multiple ways to do this, and everyone has different methods that work for them. For example, I now make an ordered list of assignments. I start with the most important assignment – most often this is the one that is due first, then work my way down the list. This helps me stay on track. I also try not to procrastinate.You should also know your limitations, and lastly but most importantly, schedule time for yourself. Whether it’s taking a break in-between assignments, having a snack, stretching, or taking a nap, it is avoidable, and it makes a huge difference. Taking time to yourself will also help you release tension and bring your stress levels down so you can be more productive. Rest, exercise, meditate, or meet up with a friend. These things may make you feel guilty at first, but without this, you’ll most likely end up burning out, which will be worse.
So, with that being said, I’m going to take more time to myself and make sure to take more breaks.. I’ve been way too hard on myself when it comes to my school work, and I know a lot of other students feel the same way, especially with balancing school, work, and personal life. We have a lot on our plates and we don’t even realize it. Happy Holidays everyone!