Starting a degree course at one of the UK’s top universities is something that only the most intelligent people in our society manage to accomplish. Sure, some rich kids get in because their parents know staff and management teams at the institutions, but most of us have to work very hard for a placement like this, so you should definitely give yourself a pat on the back. The next few years are probably going to be the most productive and most interesting you’ve ever experienced, and you’re going to make a lot of new friends along the way that could well stick with you for the rest of your life.
Although learning and becoming qualified should be your top priority, there’s still a lot to be said for the social element. As the saying goes “it’s not what you know; it’s who you know”, and this becomes especially relevant when spending your days on a campus where many of your colleagues are likely to become highflyers over the coming decade. So, you’ll want to make sure you speak to as many people as possible because they could end up offering you work in the future.
Even with all these positive points in mind, university life can be very stressful, and this often encourages students to drop out, thus leaving themselves back at square one. This is never a good move, and so I’m writing this article to fill you in on some of my top de-stressing tips that could well make your life that little bit more bearable, especially on the run up to exam season when your every waking moment will be spent revising. I know how hard it can be; I’ve been there myself.
Understanding How To Recognise Stress
Before anyone can set about dealing with the root causes of stress and anxiety, they need to first understand exactly how to spot the symptoms. This isn’t always easy because we humans have an odd way of avoiding the subject and just becoming intolerable instead of trying to help ourselves. So, here are a few common thing you should look out for. If you start to notice any of these negative factors creeping into your psyche, it’s probably time to look at ways of dealing with it.
- You’re unable to relax, even at the end of the day when the work is done
- You’re no longer feeling hungry, even when you’ve had nothing to eat all day
- You’re getting through more cigarettes than normal, even though you’re trying to quit
- You’re becoming very indecisive, even when dealing with simple choices
- You’re unable to concentrate, even when you should feel refreshed
- You’re starting to feel irritable or impatient, even around your closest friends.
- You’re having trouble sleeping, even after long days when you should be tired
Methods For Avoiding Stress
1 – Taking Time Out
No matter what sort of situation you find yourself in, taking a step back to reassess and seek out a new perspective is always going to be a wise move. You might have spent the last 6 months studying every single day, or perhaps you could be on the verge of a major breakthrough with your coursework, either way, removing yourself from this position for a while can have a very beneficial outcome.
When people think they’ve lost their keys, they can spend hours looking for them and never manage to find them. Then someone else offers to help and locates them within only a few minutes – why do you think this is? Well, I like to think it’s because the new person has a fresh perspective and their mind isn’t being clouded by hours of fruitless searching. This is much the same for those who feel stressed out with their uni work. Sometimes taking a break will help you to finish quicker.
2 – Exercising Regularly
At the risk of sounding like a fitness fanatic (I’m really not, you should see my flab), exercise is one of the best methods for clearing your mind and ensuring your body is performing properly. Don’t get me wrong, you definitely don’t want to overdo things, as this could result in you experiencing the opposite effect, but you need to do just enough so that your body and mind know they’re being looked after. Remember, even if your feet hurt when running, the rest of your body loves it.
Maybe you could join a local gym like many others seem to do nowadays, but personally I’d hold onto the cash and follow in the footsteps of Rocky Balboa – he never had to pay a monthly membership fee. Our streets are lined with pavements that are perfect for jogging or running, and as this sort of cardio is exactly what you need, I’d advise you to do the same thing. Some people don’t like being on display though, and that’s understandable.
3 – Planning Properly
As somebody who’s been known to suffer from anxiety from time to time, I know just how terrible it can be, especially when you’ve got many other issues to contend with. This is why learning to plan effectively could make all the difference to your stress levels. In most instances, we become anxious or stressed because something has taken us off guard, or we’re faced with circumstances we didn’t foresee.
Nobody will ever be able to predict certain events, but with careful planning and meticulous attention to detail, it’s still more than possible for us to gain a more substantial level of control over any situation.
Methods For Reducing Stress
1 – Never Leave Anything Until The Last Minute
When you’re given a piece of work to complete, make sure you do it straight away if you want to reduce the level of stress you experience. I know what it’s like; you’re given some coursework and told it has to be handed in in 3 weeks time, but you’re sure it will only take a few hours to complete, so it get’s placed at the bottom of the pile. The trouble is, when it gets picked up and looked at again only days before the due date you’ll often notice things you didn’t before. There might be a question or two that you don’t understand, and so it will be a mad rush to get back to campus for advice – this will obviously increase stress.
Instead of having to deal with issues like this time and time again, just take the easy road and get it done ASAP. That way, you’ll have more free time in the near future to relax, and you’re much more likely to get through it without a major breakdown.
2 – Ask For Help When You Need It
There’s no shame in asking others to give you a hand occasionally, especially when you’re attending university and some of the subjects you’re studying are incredibly complicated. You might contact a classmate or a lecturer for assistance, but if this simply isn’t possible, perhaps looking online at some of the companies who provide essay services to students could be beneficial. It’s obviously not a good idea to hand in someone elses work, but if you can get an example to work from, all the better I say. Have a quick read of this Location La Clusaz, and I’m confident you’ll soon feel the same way.
Getting expert advice – beit on paper or face to face – will help to reduce stress considerably, and is definitely something you should try when on the verge of becoming hot headed.
3 – Take A Break and Enjoy Yourself
It’s important that everyone has a hobby, or at least something that removes them from the learning or working atmosphere. So, make sure you find something both enjoyable and relaxing to do in your spare time. Many people find that reading does the trick rather well, and because this also technically educates you, it’s an absolutely fantastic pastime that must be considered. Personally, I never even read a single book up until the age of 24, and now I’ve gotten through that many that I’ve become a full time professional writer – it is sort of addictive.
Alternatively, why not try your hand at art, music or acting, as all of these endeavors tend to be very relaxing and ultimately quite enjoyable for most people.
So, now you know exactly what to do to avoid and reduce stress whilst enjoying university life, I sincerely hope the next few years will be a little more positive than they otherwise might have been. Anyone who experiences intolerable levels of stress should probably seek out the advice of a trained medical professional, as some people who get really wound up actually have slight mental health problemsthat can be treated effectively using medication. Still, there’s no shame in this either, so it’s a good idea to make the trip and get things sorted as quickly as possible.
Have a great time at uni folks, I only wish I was able to join you!