India Edwards

welfare, community & diversity
i.alderson-edwards@uea.ac.uk

look after yourself this exam period

We’ve reached that time of the year again! With deadlines and exams coming in from all angles, it’s more important than ever to keep looking after your mental health and wellbeing. Of course, it’s normal to feel stressed at such a crucial time in your degree, but hopefully these tips and tricks will help you take some time to relax and make these next couple of months just a little bit more manageable:

  1. Make sure you’re well hydrated. There are water stations in the bars and you can also get tap water from any of our cafés for free – just ask a staff member and they’ll be happy to help! There’s also a vending machine in Unio where you can buy bottled water, or why not grab yourself a bottle with your meal deal?
  2. Don’t forget to eat! With students working long hours in the Library, it’s easy to lose track of time, but without the right nutrients you won’t have the energy you need to study efficiently. Maybe take a break and have a meal in Campus Kitchen, or get yourself some fresh fruit and veg in our Tuesday and Thursday markets and get your daily dose of vitamin C after all those hours cooped up studying.
  3. Breathe. With multiple deadlines and revision on top, it can sometimes all get a bit too much. Put your work down for a moment and take a minute to tune in with your breathing, it’s great for lowering stress levels and refocusing your mind.
  4. Make sure you get enough rest. It might be tempting to pull an all-nighter to squeeze as much work in as possible, but it’ll wreak havoc for you in the long-term. Your body and mind need time to rest, and if you aim for at least eight hours’ sleep each night you’ll be sure to notice a difference in your concentration and productivity levels. If you need a break in the middle of studying, the nap nook is always available for you to have a power nap and replenish your energy.
  5. Take regular breaks. Whether this means grabbing your favourite coffee from Unio and sitting in the Square for a bit, taking a walk around the lake, or visiting the Sainsbury Centre to take your mind off of work, it’ll help you de-stress and take a breather to think about something other than work. If you’re at home, take a moment to relax by having a bath or shower, listening to some music, or maybe watching an episode of your favourite TV show to give yourself a break.
  6. Exercise! Although it’s not the first thing you’d think of doing after a hard day’s work, exercise will give you a great release and get your body tired for a good night’s sleep.
  7. Find somewhere you work well. Everybody works differently in different environments; whether you prefer mornings or evenings, silent study or Unio, it’s just about finding what works best for you.
  8. Have a plan. Organising yourself so you know exactly what you need to do is a great way to reduce stress. Perhaps break your revision into different topics, or give yourself achievable goals to work towards from day to day.
  9. Ditch your phone! Ok, not literally, but some time away from distractions like Facebook will mean you can really focus on work and you’ll likely find you’ll be a lot more productive.
  10. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. There are lots of different support services here at UEA: the Advice Centre is open Monday-Friday in Union House, and you can also make an appointment with Student Support Service (located on the walkway between Union House and the Library) if you need help. If you’re studying at night or feeling too stressed to sleep, remember that Nightline is always available for peer-support from 8pm-8am - their website has all the details of how to get in touch. Finally, check out my previous post for details of all the stuff we’ve got going on to help you throughout the exam period – if you want more details on any of the Wellbeing sessions that the SSS are running, head to their reception desk!

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