The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
Navigating your way through university life can be extremely daunting and is often made more difficult by workloads that seem never-ending, copious amounts of deadlines and the many lectures we have each week. You can often find yourself feeling like you’re in an endless cycle of working and stressing, which can lead to feeling like you have no spare time for yourself, let alone time to socialize. In a 2019 study, The Natwest Living Index stated that almost half of the 3,604 UK University students they surveyed (45%), felt stressed by their course. It’s evident that now more than ever, you should be taking time to destress and relegate time in your daily routine to think of something other than those looming deadlines.
Compartmentalizing your time between university work and personal life can be a difficult task itself, with much of a university student’s routine being dictated by lectures, meetings and seminars. So, what can you do when you feel like your life is being overruled by these things?
- Separate your workspace from your personal space
Although it seems insignificant, creating designated spaces for working and relaxing can have huge a huge impact when trying to create boundaries between university and personal life. It can be very easy to stay in bed to watch lectures and do work but making the effort to move to a workspace like a desk or an office can make a world of difference. This can help you feel as though your university work is separate from that which you would do in these spaces. Keeping your bed as a place strictly for sleeping and the sofa as a place to relax and watch your favourite programme at the end of the day create a clear distinction between work and relaxing (although this does not mean that the occasional workday snuggled up in bed isn’t also beneficial).
2. Join a club or society
Another thing which might help create clear boundaries between work life and personal life is through joining a society or club. These are great as these often take place at the same time every week, meaning that it is easy for them to be planned around, so you can stay on top of work deadlines. Another great advantage to this is the opportunity these clubs and societies give you to be sociable and make friends outside of your course. Most clubs also host their own social events, giving you more opportunities to step outside of your comfort zone and socialize.
3. Take one hour a day for you
Scheduling one hour a day for something you enjoy is one small thing that can be done to help make you feel as though you are not being completely overrun by work. This can be anything; reading a chapter of a novel, listening to a podcast, watching an episode of a programme, or this could be the perfect opportunity to start a new hobby. This can be the perfect study break and it’s important to allow yourself time to unwind and recharge between study sessions or at the end of the day.
4. Invest in a planner
Planning your day out hour by hour can be really effective in scheduling time blocks for different things. It’s easy to feel like the hours and days all run into each other, leaving you to feel like you’re always one step behind. When thinking about essays and deadlines, it can be handy to dedicate a certain amount of time a week to ensure you do enough work and properly spread out your workload to reduce stress and save you from cramming the night before.
It can be so easy to feel overwhelmed with maintaining a good balance between a work-life and social life but remember: taking it one day at a time is the key to maintaining a good balance.