[FROM THE PAPER] How to Combat Work-load Stress

by Jade Taylorson - Lifestyle Editor

The final semester of the year is here and we all have assignments and exams coming out of our ears. It’s a busy time and there’s a lot going on at once, which makes it easy for people to become stressed and overloaded with work. To take a weight off of your shoulders and make the next few weeks that little bit easier, I’ve came up with a few things that can help to manage your work better – subsequently preventing you from pulling your hair out and having the all too familiar “I hate university” meltdown.

Be organised:
There’s nothing worse than leaving an assignment until the night before the deadline. Having to stay in the library until the early hours of the morning to complete it is no one’s favourite task. We’ve all been there and it’s not fun. To avoid a sleepless night of panic combined with a ridiculous amount of caffeine, set out deadline dates at the beginning of the semester so you can organise your time and plan well beforehand. This way, you won’t forget about that assignment at the bottom of the pile and leave it until the last minute!

Take time out:
Before you start doing work or revision, set some time aside to take a break and grab a snack. Continuously doing work for hours on end will get you nowhere. You’ll find yourself restless and procrastinating before you know it, tempted to watch that episode of Orange is The New Black that you haven’t watched yet. For every 20 minutes, take 5 out to give your brain a rest and refuel. Doing this will help you get more done in a shorter amount of time.

One bit at a time:
Got a 3,000 word essay on that module you hate? Or revision for an exam you’re trying to avoid like the plague? Instead of doing it all in one bulk and torturing yourself, do a section each day. This will give you time to look back over your work and plan ahead for the next section. Now you won’t feel like your life is over by trying to do it all at once. You’ll also be able to get more reading done and have a better understanding of the work you have to do – giving you all round better results!

Discuss your work:
You’re not sure how to do an assignment and are constantly worrying about what everyone else is doing or if they’re in the same position? Best thing you can do? Ask them. There’s no point worrying about something when it can easily be dealt with and it’s more than likely that the majority of the people on your course as dumbfounded as you are. It will make you feel a hell of a lot better if you’re in the same boat and probably give you the confidence to just go for it. If they can help you out, even better.

Exercise:
Exercising makes your body produce endorphins, which make you feel really good and reduces stress levels. It might not feel good at the time, and just the thought of it might put you off. But afterwards you will certainly feel the benefits. You’ll also be more energised and ready to do work. Try fitting an exercise class or a gym session in after lectures. This way, you won’t go home and be tempted to go to bed and watch a film… or two.

No more late nights:
You only have 500 words of your assignment left and it’s nearly 1am. No matter how badly you want to get it finished and never think about it ever again, staying up instead of getting rest is never a good idea. If you find it’s getting quite late, just stop and pick it up again tomorrow. Looking back at your work and starting again with a fresh pair of eyes is much better than being so tired you could write something totally irrelevant just to get it done. If you carry on the next day after a good night’s sleep, chances are you’ll be much happier with your work.

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