When attending university for the first time (or even the second, third or fourth), it can be challenging to manage your study load in a healthy way. If you’re hurdling towards total burnout, check out these tips below for getting your study-life balance back on track.
- Make Time For Friends And Family
Spending some quality time with those you value most in life can work wonders on your mood. Nobody can thrive when they spend 16 hours a day tapping away at a laptop and enjoy no real-life interactions with other humans.
- Practice Realistic Goal Setting
You can’t earn your degree without studying, but that doesn’t mean you have to spend 18 hours a day chained to your desk. In fact, spending all day every day focused on nothing but your studies can even be detrimental to your academic progress. What’s our point? It’s that you need to set realistic goals that you can actually meet so you don’t become demoralized, burnt out and end up dropping out of uni in the final term of your 5-year degree with just two assignments left to submit (it happens).
- Make A Schedule
Creating a schedule may sound like a boring task, but it can help to significantly reduce your stress levels. It enables you to prioritise assignments with the nearest submission deadlines and better organise your studies as well as outside academic duties such as student storage needs and maintaining a social life.
- Enjoy “Me Time”
Your weekly schedule should always include some “me time” slots. Giving yourself permission to do things that help you distress and that make you happy is crucial. There is no reason to feel guilty when enjoying such activities if they are properly scheduled. Your “me time” slots could feature specific activities, such as catching up on an episode of one of your favourite TV shows, or be simply scheduled as “free time”.
- Don’t Neglect Your Health
Your physical health and mental health are incredibly valuable. Studying is important, but your health should always come first. So, don’t allow yourself to become sleep deprived and try your best to eat a nutritious diet. What does this mean in reality? It means you shouldn’t try to survive on nothing but instant ramen noodles and 2 am fast food binges for the duration of your 4-year degree. While eating healthy with limited time and funds can be tough, it’s not undoable. Once you start eating better, you’ll feel more energised and be able to power through all those assignments with tight deadlines. You also need to aim to get an average of 7 hours of sleep per night. This doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy nights out with your friends or have to force yourself to go to bed at 8 pm.
- Get An Evening Or Weekend Job.
While the idea of taking on even more work at this stressful time might seem counterintuitive, applying for a part-time job can be very beneficial. It will force you to organise your time more effectively and provide you with the bonus of some extra cash in your pocket each week.