Coping with stress over the festive period

December 07, 2017
It's Blogmas day 5 and I'm talking about deadlines, stress and how to cope while enjoying Christmas (going to need to think of a shorter title for that...). Anyway, as a university student, I'm fully aware of how stressful the deadlines are around Christmas when all you want to do is do fun, festive things so I'm going to tell you some ways that you can have a relaxing Christmas while still being productive. A lot of these tips can also be used all year round as a way to de-stress and feel calm...

Using completely irrelevant photos because I have no time to take more, life

1. Make a to do list -
I will forever stand by this in saying that to do lists are so much more effective than timed schedules, for me anyway. Every day, I'll make a to do list in the morning using Google Keep that I can refer back to during the day and I find this to be a lot less stressful as I'm still getting so much done but I'm not giving myself certain time scales for it. I remember during GCSE's and AS-Level, I made countless revision timetables trying to get myself organsised but it never worked. I would just get stressed out when something took a bit longer than I planned for and then I would rework my whole timetable (arguably, the ultimate form of procrastination). Whereas, when I got to A Levels, I started making to do lists and I got much better grades and this is the method I still use now for everything from making dinner to researching for an essay and it works fairly well, if I do say so myself.

2. Christmas playlists - Got a deadline that's making fesitivities non existent? Put a Christmas playlist on to make it 10x more festive. Now, as I try to control my procrastination, I will say do not spend hours making this playlist on Spotify, there's plenty out there already for you to choose from. However, this is guaranteed to make you feel a lot more up beat as you work through that essay you've been avoiding.

3. Factor in time for fun events - A Christmas market? An arts and crafts session? Trying out the new Costa Christmas menu with a friend? Don't cancel just because you have that awful deadline, that exam to revise for or that work project to finish. It's important to factor in time for fun activities, even if that means you can't have a lie in because you need to wake up a bit earlier to do more work. I'm not saying just ignore the deadline, but remember that it is not the be all end all and you need to make time for you.

4. Focus on the work, not on your phone - You'll find that your work is a lot more effective when you do shorter periods of concentrated work rather than longer periods that involve you constantly scrolling through your Instagram feed. I use the app Forest to stay concentrated and I would definitely recommend everyone investing in it. You grow trees which are killed as soon as you start using your phone. Similarly, if you are getting more work done, you have more time for fun events like I stated in point 3.

5. But remember to relax too - While life is busy when you're trying to get loads of work done, while making time to see friends and family over the festive period, it's important to remember yourself. You also need time to relax. Whether that be stopping work for the evening to watch a Christmas film or baking some Christmas treats, you time is important.

What do you do to cope with stress?

Lauryn


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