Oh my god, we’re back again (yes I did just quote Backstreet Boys); new term, new stresses and, of course as the Instagram captions go, new you. Personally, I always find the first week of the second term is always the most difficult, purely because I have spent the past few weeks churning out coursework and whilst my mind is still in recovery mode, I now have new topics to think about.
But, although the thought of more assignments is a daunting one, the first few introductory lectures help you get back in to the swing of things and reassure you that this term will be no different to the first one. Oh goodie!
So what can you do to try and make this term better than the first? New Year’s resolutions are great, but does anyone really make any ones that they stick to for a whole year? Plus, let’s face it, giving up chocolate and spending money are not only wholly unrealistic, they also don’t always make you feel that much better. Save that for Lent…
In light of this, in an attempt to inspire, instead of boring you with the usual list of resolutions, here are some that (so far) are adding some merriment to my life:
I know what you’re thinking. ‘Aren’t you an English student? Surely you spend all your free time in artisan coffee shops reading Sartre?’ Yes, I am an English student but I also love procrastinating and Netflix. But this year, rather than leaving it to last minute and trying to swallow a whole novel two days before a seminar, I set myself a number of pages to read every day. I especially try and make it the last thing I do before I go to sleep, because it’s far more beneficial for your sleep cycle than staring at a phone screen for twenty minutes. Even if you don’t do English, reading is a great way to relax and, who knows, you might even enjoy it when you land on a good page-turner.
Buy a planner and be more organised
Okay, this one sounds somewhat boring but I have never found something so rewarding. My mum gave me her old leather Filofax (those diaries that everyone who was anyone had in the 80s), and only now do I feel as if I have my whole life together. I pencil in all of my uni hours, competitions and other important dates, so that a) I don’t forget anything, and b) I know how much time I have to complete something without stressing myself out, by prioritising. Treat yourself to a nice diary/planner and a fluffy pencil and watch your life become stress-free.
This seems quite broad, but good music can turn your day from a nay to a yay in just 3 minutes. So why not open your ears to some different genres and refresh your playlists with some new artists? I am also a huge lover of live music, and you’d be surprised at how many great artists perform locally! Whether it’s at the Pavilions, the Hub, Exeter or even Jam House at the SU, there is no better feeling than hearing your favourite song live.
Do more charity shopping!
I have recently discovered that Plymouth is the cornucopia of charity shops, particularly along Mutley and in town. If you’re willing to have a bit of a rummage, you can find amazing stuff from surprisingly cool branded clothing, to CDs and DVDs. And rarely will anything cost you more than a tenner! What’s more, your money is going to a good cause, so you don’t have to feel guilty when you go in and splash your cash.
This is something that my flatmateand I started doing when she had finished her exams, and it’s a great way to cheer yourself up and to motivate yourself when the work-load gets tough. Weekend get-aways, festivals, holidays – they don’t have to be expensive! Get all of these things sorted now so that you don’t end up bored at home whilst watching your mates living it up in Magaluf on Snapchat.