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Burning Up, Not Out

Recovering from midterms, maintaining in-class participation and practising self-care are all key to crushing finals. But there is one BIG issue that many people face this time of the year: Burnout.

Burnout is is a state of physical, emotional and mental exhaustion caused by stress. Excessive and prolonged stress leads to the feeling of being overwhelmed, drained, and unable to meet demands. Following midterms and a flood of assignments, it is easy to fall to burnout. If you have or fear you may, here are a few ways to avoid or recover from burnout.

One of the biggest ways to avoid burnout is to remain aware of upcoming events and practice good time management.  Being prepared for tests and completing assignments in a timely manner are a great way to practice time management. When it comes to assignments, one of the best ways to stay on track and complete it is a timely manner is to break large projects into smaller ones.
 Last-minute projects and trying to pull all-nighters only create stress which leads to burnout.  Burnout often occurs when people do not allow themselves to the time to properly achieve their goals. 

This being said, ultimately stress is not the same as burnout. It is a factor of burnout.  Choosing paths that cause stress for minimum rewards should be avoided wherever possible. I sit on a variety of club executives, but many of my friends choose not to as it would be an additional level of work and stress that they choose not to take on. Taking on more than you can handle is the recipe for disaster. If you do take on a lot, ensure that you are balancing it well and setting attainable goals often.

As I have said in previous posts, taking care of yourself can save you. Eating healthily, getting exercise, and having enough sleep is priceless. You will experience less stress and be more productive if you allow adequate time to take care of yourself.   Although vegging out can make you feel better, it has a short term effect as it only allows the stress to sit dormant.  Instead, engage in yoga, walking, and sport as they release stress, that will help you avoid burnout.

Sometimes you need to blackout to avoid burnout. Limit your time on social media and devices when undergoing a lot of academic work.  The constant presence of these updates can add to a sense of overstimulation that can overwhelm us if in massive quantities. Disconnecting from social media is recommended for students and workers alike. Turning off and tuning out for a while can help to avoid burnout.

If you are experiencing burnout, make sure you seek help from friends, professors and support.  These are the people who can help alleviate stress, help balance your school work and make adjustments when needed.  It may seem like forever until finals begin, but it is quite the opposite. Aim to prevent it or end it before the wave of finals hits.

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