How to work through deadline fatigue

Written by Tyler Nicholas

As the academic term draws to a close, the stress for students to concentrate on their assignments during Christmas increases. Furthermore, procrastination begins to worm its way into the minds of students during this festive season. However, I have successfully come up with 5 tips to stop myself from procrastinating during this time of the year and would like to pass these onto you.

So, here are a few ways to keep yourself focused during this crucial time of the year

Drink plenty of water

Drinking lots of water significantly affects energy levels and brain function as it prevents dehydration and delivers important nutrients to our cells, specifically our muscle cells to stop fatigue. Having a coke from time to time is fine, however, drinking plenty of water will keep you fit and healthy for the day ahead! As a student, I used to drink alot of fizzy drinks which would give me energy but only for a short period of time and I would start to get tired. I swapped fizzy drinks for water and I was able to stay more awake.

Organise yourself

Don’t leave things till the last minute! On weekends, try to plan a timetable for the following week. Try doing this up until the day before your assignment due date. In this way, you can plan your time of studying and your time of pleasure accordingly, so you have enough time to eat and sleep properly each day. I like to start this tip early in the morning so that I can spend the rest of the day, indulging in my pleasures. If you struggle with following a specific routine, you can always switch up this method by starting late one day and early another. Whatever structure works for you!

Making sure you are eating properly

Eating takeaways is something that we all do from time to time but try to give yourself a balanced diet for the most part. Fruits and vegetables will give you sources of protein, which will give you enough energy throughout the day. Too much junk food, on the other hand, can drain your energy levels over time. I personally like to cook meal preps for the following week, so that I can concentrate on my work and not worry about what to cook for the next day. If you are someone who struggles with a balanced diet, I would recommend this method and then perhaps, treating yourself to a takeaway on weekends.

Switch off any form of technology

If your phone, laptop or tv will distract you from your daily tasks, please turn them off. Be strict on yourself and you will notice how much you can achieve in a day. Also, I know that parents or siblings can be a distraction as well, so I would advise you to let them know that you are studying so they won’t disturb you until you have finished your work. As I start my work at 9am and normally finish around 4, I like to turn my phone off every three hours, so I am only turning it on when it is lunchtime and when I have finished. Depending on when you start your work to when you finish, you can alter this method. However, I find that this method really works for me and helps me stay focused throughout the day.

Try to keep in contact with your lecturers

This tip may be difficult since your lecturers are on their Christmas break too, but don’t be afraid to ask for help. If you are stuck at answering a question or don’t understand something from the assignment, it is worth a try to email your teachers with questions. Of course, don’t bombard them with messages but in a likely event, they may reply to you. I have been using this method for three years and it has kept me as a student, focused on my work and assignments. If you don’t find success in this method, keep in contact with your fellow course friends and ask for help. I have found that being in the course bubble will regularly remind you to stay on track with your work.

Try these tips and see if they work for you!

Feature image: Suzy, Frisch ‘3 Expert Strategies for Procrastination Less at Work’ in Redbooth

Tyler Nicholas is a third-year English student. She can be found on Instagram @tyler_nicholas1

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University of Leicester's Student Magazine

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