Feeling overwhelmed at university? Here are some tips to try

Feeling overwhelmed at university? Here are some tips to try

Once deadlines begin to loom closer and your calendar is full, it’s easy to become overwhelmed at university. Whether it’s full of social events or never-ending essays, everyone will feel overwhelmed at some point within their university career. Here are some basic but helpful tips to stop it all from becoming a bit too much.

 

1. Get active

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Something as simple as going for a run can help to clear your mind. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the endless pile of work, why not take a break from it for a while? Try doing something that gets your body active instead of your brain. The levels of chemicals in your brain such as serotonin, stress hormones and endorphins change when you begin to exercise. Exercising can also reduce the levels of cortisol, which a stress hormone. Simply walking in nature might be that breath of fresh air you need.

2. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep

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Getting enough sleep is something that can end up being pushed right down to the bottom of your priority list; sometimes you may even feel like you don’t have time to sleep. However, making sleep a priority can help to reduce your stress and stop you from feeling overwhelmed. When you’re tired your mood sinks and you can be easily irritable, getting worked up quicker than you would usually. If you get into a routine of sleeping early and waking up early, you will feel more productive and your concentration span will be longer.

3. Be kinder to yourself

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As much it’s important to be kind to others, it’s equally, if not more important to practice that same kindness towards yourself. If your friend was burnt out from working, you wouldn’t force them to carry on, so why do it to yourself? How you treat yourself will set the tone for how others will treat you. At university, it’s hard to  give yourself a break but it’s vital for your health and happiness. Maybe do one thing a week that’s solely just for you- not an obligation to your course or to your friends. This should be something that makes you happy eg. reading a new book or having a pamper evening.

4. Understand the source of your stress

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It can be a lot easier to manage stress if you can pinpoint exactly where it’s coming from. This can be difficult if you’re overwhelmed- it can feel like everything is wrong and stress is not a tangible thing you can get rid of. Take the time to go through each of your commitments and whether they are serving you or making you genuinely happy. If there’s something you can cut out to avoid unnecessary stress then do it. Remember that you have to put yourself first. Also, take the time to think about how you’re treating yourself and whether you’re practising enough self-care.

5. Practice mindfulness and meditation

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Mindfulness is a type of meditation where you focus on being intensely aware of what you’re seeing and feeling in that moment. You can look on the Mindful website to get started. This can be useful if you’re feeling overwhelmed as it forces you to stop worrying about the future and instead be present in the moment. It helps reduce anxiety and will leave you feeling much calmer. As you practice mindfulness every day you will notice yourself becoming more kind, calm and patient. It’s a beneficial hobby to get into.

6. Talk to someone

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If all else fails and you are really struggling, it’s important you talk to someone about how you are feeling. Your university will have mental health resources and students around you will definitely be feeling the same way. It always helps to have a chat and get everything out in the open.

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