Autumn leaves have fallen on a University campus on a bright day

The November slump

The excitement of freshers week seems to go on forever, there’s no denying it. In fact, the “week” seems now to stretch all the way through from September into October.

Unfortunately, freshers can’t last forever (I know, it sucks). So what can we do to get through that awkward November period. The time just after the freshers hype has died down, and deadlines are fast approaching.

First thing’s first. Get organised.

It’s easy to get overwhelmed with how many assessments seem to be just around the corner. So, start by writing down a list of what you have to do, add your hand-in dates, then figure out what the first (or next) steps are to complete them. It would also be a good idea to prioritise the most important or the nearest deadline. Then soon everything will feel a lot easier to manage.

When it comes to killing it in your first assignments, remember that the University has loads of facilities to use. The library is open for 24 hours – and this will come in handy! Trust me, utilising everything that is offered to you by the uni can really help you get the best grades.

However, the fun doesn’t have to stop as soon as deadlines begin to show up on the horizon. It is still important to take some time for yourself. You may have heard this before, but taking some time to do something good for yourself can actually improve your academic performance!

Building on those friendships you made in freshers might allow you a much-needed break and a great opportunity to establish a support system for when things get a bit too stressful.

One of the best pieces of advice I could give is to establish a good routine, and the earlier you do this the better. Figure out how to get the most out of your time and get into the habit of doing a little each day. If you stick to your routine it could end up structuring how you work for the rest of your university career.

A routine doesn’t have to be difficult, it simply lets you figure out how you can get everything you need to done. For example, are you more productive in the mornings or the evenings? Do you work best in small chunks or longer stretches? Do you like to finish something before you move onto another task or do you like to split things up into smaller easier to achieve goals? Once you’ve figured this out, you’ll know how to plan your day around getting your work done around any other commitments you have.

Last, but certainly not least, there’s one thing everyone should remember when the “November slump” hits. Everybody (and I do mean everybody) gets stressed out. If you’re like me, one of the biggest worries you have is that you’re the only one who feels overwhelmed by deadlines.

But don’t fret – sometimes there will be “slumps”. It might be this time of year, or it might be later, but you won’t be the only one feeling the pressure. The trick is to rely on the friends you’ve made and the routine you’ve (hopefully) put in place for yourself to get you through.

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