I’m Overwhelmed: A Rant With a Side of Advice

Hello people! This isn’t going to be a structured or planned post. I’ve been studying non-stop for a sinfully long time and I’m about at the end of my rope so I decided to unload my concerns here.

In the next two weeks, I have 6 midterms, 1 (or 2) quiz(zes), 1 project due, and 1 lab write-up due and I’m actually about to pull my hair out. At times like this, I find myself wondering why I even decided to study engineering. I mean, is it even worth it if I’m this stressed like 70% of the time? Honestly, its so annoying.  (I know that I do like what I’m doing though because I only think this when things get more difficult than anticipated).

I don’t know if any of you are in engineering or if your majors also put you through this much stress but if you relate, please let me know so we can suffer together. Misery loves company, right?

I find myself blaming everyone from my teachers to my friends but I really should be blaming myself. I could have and should have planned ahead for this because it wasn’t like they were hiding these dues dates from us. They were all laid out on our course outlines and I really should have made a point to be aware of them…but I didn’t. It’s a classic shoulda, coulda, woulda, but didn’t situation and I’m honestly quite disappointed in myself for that. I’ve been chilling out for the first couple of weeks of school instead of preparing ahead for these things (like the fool that I sometimes am) and now I’m finding it hard to do anything because I can’t stop thinking about all the other things that I still have to do which wastes even more time (it’s a vicious cycle).

Long story short, I screwed up. I dun goofed. Smh. In my defense (defence?), we only just performed the lab last week so I really couldn’t have started that earlier.

So whilst I sit here venting and admittedly procrastinating even more (to help you), I’m also going to help you avoid (or at least try to avoid) this situation with the following hard-learned lessons:

1. Don’t pull your hair out.

Obviously.

2. Don’t beat yourself up too much about it.

You definitely deserve some necessary scolding, but everyone makes this mistake at least once (I’m a prime example – though this isn’t the first time unfortunately). Just scold and move on.

3. Make a calendar at the beginning of the term with all due dates and exam dates on it.

The reason I’m in this mess is because I didn’t do that on time. I waited till about two weeks ago to do it. Shame on me.

4. Actually look at the calendar from time to time.

I’m working on this. I’ve recently realized that having a calendar won’t help you if you don’t know what’s on it.

5. Make studying/assignment completion schedules.

Even if you don’t follow it to the T, it’ll help you avoid the mess I’m in where everything is just falling on you like an avalanche.

6. Procrastinate wisely.

I’m not going to say don’t procrastinate because let’s be real, who doesn’t procrastinate. I’d be a liar if I said I don’t. Unfortunately, I don’t have a lot of words for this one because I have yet to figure out how to do it myself but when I do, I’ll be sure to let you know.

7. Prioritize.

If you do somehow find yourself in this mess even with all the great wisdom I have just bestowed upon you, then learn to prioritize. By that, I mean that you should decide what you care about the most and spend the most time on that. I have one subject that I’m not as strong in so I’m going to spend most of the little time I have on that and hope for the best for the other subjects. This is obviously not ideal but desperate times call for desperate measures so it’s what has to be done.

8. Talk about it.

If you’re feeling really overwhelmed and you can’t handle it. Don’t be afraid to talk to someone about it: a friend, a teacher, a family member, or a professional. There is no shame in being overwhelmed at times and sometimes sharing helps. I know writing this has helped me relax a little bit.

Hopefully this helps you (at least a little). I’m going to try to do this before finals so I don’t die from stress and in the meantime, I have a lot of work to do.

Wish me luck!

-Michelle

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