09/04/2021

Categories: Postgraduate, Postgraduate

Stress Awareness Month 2021 (Tips for Managing Postgraduate Stress)

Studying a master’s or juggling a part-time course can full on, but the benefits of postgraduate study are life-changing. Here’s how to keep stress down to a minimum…

April is Stress Awareness Month in the UK, and this is the perfect time to talk about stress as a postgraduate student. University, at any age can be stressful, exciting and empowering all at the same time.

The key is knowing how to manage stress and having the right support. Of course, picking the right university is the first step. At the University of Bolton, we’re proud to have a student-centric approach, putting you and your needs first.

Our award-winning Student Services Team is on hand to support you throughout your studies, and we pride ourselves on delivering #UniAsItShouldBe. This might explain why we’re No.1 for Student Satisfaction* for three years running! 

We care about you, and your wellbeing. So for Stress Awareness Month 2021, we’re sharing our top tips for reducing exam stress and academic stress for Postgraduates. 

1. Be your most organised self

Great organisational skills don’t come naturally to everyone, but this is the time to practice. Postgraduate study is a lot more independent than undergraduate study, meaning you’ll need a get-up-and-go attitude and be able to work by yourself.

This is even more important if you are juggling a part-time course alongside work commitments. In order to manage yourself and your time effectively, planning is key. Never underestimate the power of a wall schedule, a weekly planner, a bullet journal or time-keeping apps for students.

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2. Take a break from studying

Having enough time to break away from your studies is hugely important for maintaining effective concentration and memory. Studies show that taking breaks from studying every ninety minutes is the best way to improve focus.

Scheduling breaks is also a fantastic way to relieve stress, with activities such as meditation, short walks, stretching, phoning a friend, tidying up your desk or running an errand all being excellent for lowering cortisol. 

3. Exercise and eat a balanced diet

Forgetting to look after yourself is a common issue, not just among postgraduate students, but all university students. If you’re dealing with exam stress, grabbing junk food and skipping the gym can happen.

The key is to get back on the bandwagon even if you fall off. Remember, this isn’t just a tip for Stress Awareness Week 2021. Looking after your body should always be a priority!

The mental benefits of exercise have a neurochemical basis, and a balanced diet helps our bodies manage the physiological changes caused by stress.

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4. Practice positive thinking

One of the best ways of keeping academic stress levels down is to change your way of thinking. If you know someone who is a worrier, make sure you share our blog post about easy positive psychology exercises that everyone can do!

By using a more positive outlook, you can find joy in the smaller things, celebrating little achievements along the way, keeping yourself motivated throughout your studies.

5. Get a good night’s sleep

Burning the candle at both ends can lead to postgraduate stress and burnout. In order to minimise exam stress and other university stress, it’s important to hit the refresh button.

According to the College Student Journal, the biggest stressor in higher and further education (with 81% of surveyed students agreeing) is a change in sleeping habits.

Sleep is also cumulative, so while losing one hour’s sleep one night might be ok, doing it five nights on the trot will lead to problems. Mindfulness and meditation are some of the ways you can use to help lower stress and get the quality of sleep needed to keep your brain and body alert.

 

Happy Stress Awareness Week 2021 to all of our students! Want to get involved? Share this article on Twitter or other social platforms and spread the word about stress management!

Don’t forget to use the University of Bolton’s mental health and wellbeing services should you need them at any point.

To find out more about applying for a Postgraduate course, see our course search online.

 

* Complete University Guide in 2021, 2020 and 2019, North West region

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Help Centre

We have the answers to your questions, find all the advice and support in one place.

Part of the University of Bolton Group

Bolton college
Alliance learning
Anderton centre2
Scheme Participant
RiSE pos rgb logo
TEF Silver QQA