Friday 12 April 2024

Stress Awareness Month 2024

The Editorial Team are raising awareness for Stress Awareness Month by sharing their top tips for managing stress at university.

- Student Minds Blog Editorial Team

⭐ Tip 1: Find your people ⭐
by Taylor

Managing stress is so much easier when you can get out of the zone and feel truly happy with the people around you. It certainly doesn't mean that the problem will go away but having a good distraction doesn't hurt and neither does a good support network that you can talk your problems through with. After all, a great friendship can get you through anything!

⭐ Tip 2: Explore hobbies you love
by Madeleine 

Having hobbies you can go to for destressing can be a massive help when it comes to managing stress. Having things you enjoy aside from academics will mean that you have something to turn to when studying gets a bit much. Taking time out to reset and enjoy something else will mean you can later return to your studies refreshed and ready to take on your next assignment. 

⭐ Tip 3: Use your stress to your advantage ⭐
by Emily A

Like anything, stress is a good thing to have in moderation. An element of stress can be a powerful motivator for getting things done and reaching out of your comfort zone to explore new passions. Pay attention to your relationship with stress as it can be a useful mechanism for understanding your limits and when you might need to follow some of the other tips in this blog!

⭐ Tip 4: Journalling
by Emily T

This year, perhaps more than others, I have encountered many stressful situations. Working abroad as an English Language Assistant has been an amazing experience, but I have sometimes struggled with the unpredictability of travelling abroad. To avoid the feeling of being overwhelmed in stressful situations, I have found that writing every day in a diary about the situations that I have faced and what the solutions were has been super important in managing my stress. Having solutions to many common problems while travelling written in my journal has enabled me to refer to past situations and resolve the situations quickly through predetermined steps!

How are you getting involved during Stress Awareness Month? Share with the team - we'd love to hear from you!

Find out how you can get involved with the Student Minds Blog this Stress Awareness Month.

Wednesday 10 April 2024

Overworking: How I work to be efficient

Daniel shares his tips and strategies to work efficiently while also enjoying time off.

- Daniel

A common problem for students is being overworked, as we all know, the work does not stop! As someone who is dyslexic, I often felt like I was falling behind. However, I found some techniques that helped me progress with my studies while also helping me to enjoy my free time. 

1. Morning routine

It is always hard to get work done when half the day has already gone. In my experience, getting up late becomes a habit that really hinders your ability to complete your work. Waking up early allowed me to complete more tasks and helped me with my workload, stress relief and mental health. 

2. Step-by-step assessments

Assessments are what count towards your final grade, but other work may need to be completed before cracking on with essay questions and projects. This is why I found doing a little bit of assessment work daily, like essay planning, helps to free up time for all the other work during the year, like exam revision. So, when you really need to focus on the assessment, you have more time to do so. It does not have to be much; a little bit of research or planning every day makes a difference. 

3. Take time off

It may seem like an obvious one, but sometimes it becomes a habit to work all of the time in order to get all your work done. But it will not be your best work and make you feel down if you miss out on events and opportunities. In my experience, I would make errors that I did not notice until after my work had been handed in. Therefore, it is very important to put strict limits on your work hours to keep your mind fresh and allow you to be efficient with your study time.

4. Pomodoro Technique

This technique helped me stay efficient and allowed me to get work done in small chunks. It includes multiple breaks and helps when you have work from different modules. 

5. Practicing core skills daily

My degree included a language and to keep my progress going in class and with my language skills, I would try to learn vocabulary and grammar and practice speaking with friends. This type of work can be transferred into other degree subjects. I recommend regular practice in these skills as it benefited me in my exams by saving time. 

Remember overworking and having less free time does not always put you ahead. It can put you further behind.

Whether you are looking for support for your own mental health at university or supporting a friend, help is available.

My name is Daniel and I have recently graduated from the University of Reading where I studied BA Spanish and History. During my time at university, I struggled with dyslexia and mental health issues, so it is my aim to help as many people as possible who are going through similar issues.