Learning the importance of balancing mental health with course loads
Becoming a student is one of the most challenging and exciting things that you can ever do in your lifetime. There is something thrilling about broadening your horizons, both intellectually and personally, and education gives students that opportunity on a shining silver platter. Further, higher education allows you to do that on your own terms. The beauty in going to college or university is that you are in control of what you study, how you study…even the choice of if you want to pursue further study at all is entirely and solely your own.
Higher education is a challenge. There is something inherently prominent about the promise of excitement and challenge being encircled into one. You will get a lot of advice as a student. Some of it will prove to be immensely helpful, and some of it will be less so. It can be hard to sift through the advice to figure out which pieces are most relevant, will have the most impact, on your academic journey and yourself as a person. The single most useful, inclusive piece of advice that any higher education student can receive, is to balance their course load and their mental health. But how? It is all so chaotic, so busy.
Find your balance, your rhythm
And stick to it. It is a certainty that no two students thrive in the exact same ways. Because of this, the same method of studying or coping with the stress of being a student will not work for every single student. It is important to find your balance as soon as you can, and to stick to it. If you study best in the early hours before class resumes, then do that. If you study best at night time well after the sun sets, then do that. Do not focus so much on what your friends and classmates are doing, because they are more than likely finding their own rhythm too.
Take time away from the books
Being studious is fantastic, and it is of course the whole point of studying. But it is not the be all and end all. It is only natural that sometimes you are going to need to take some time out from the books to focus on your wellbeing. Being a student is hard, and you are going to need breaks to give your mind and your body a moment to destress and realign. Make the most of your brain power while you are in peak study mode, and then give it the rest it sometimes needs to reset and revitalise.
Know the channels for support
Make use of them. Some of the support systems will make themselves obvious, so take advantage of them. But do your research as well. It can be immensely helpful to have a stronger basic understanding of health in general, which is why the companies and websites that offer this information are so valuable. If you find a professional website that offers the latest and greatest information and data on health, take the time to sit down and check it out. It could prove to be the most helpful, relevant thing you have read. Your mental health is more important than your grades – no matter what anyone else says.
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