Five ways to pull yourself out of a mid-sem slump

September 02, 2016
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The first few weeks of uni have been and gone, and along with it any spare time free of assignments, readings and stress. Now begins the avalanche of uni work, a great big boulder between us and the distant promise of summer break.

Juggling this with work commitments and attempting to maintain some sort of social life and sanity becomes a delicate and enduring task; before we know it we’re all straggling around campus like something akin to that of Night Of The Living Dead.

When all memories of a good night’s sleep have faded and coffee is no longer enough to sustain your drooping eyes, remember something known as natural energy levels.

To someone whose blood is probably 65 per cent caffeine by this point, the term is probably completely foreign. This is the point it’s time to acknowledge the problem and make a change in increasing the energy of your body to avoid that mid-semester slump.

Increase levels of iron, vitamin B and magnesium

Fatigue is a common symptom for low iron levels or anaemia. Iron is essential for the production of energy from glucose and vitamin B aids the metabolism of carbohydrates and fats into energy.

Ensure your diet includes both vitamins or take supplements to get your fill. Magnesium won’t go astray either, as it assists with muscle recovery and having a restful sleep.

Exercise

You’re probably sick of hearing about the wonders of regular exercise, however recent research shows that it pays off in the long run in lifting fatigue.

Exercise can also be used in your day to give you a boost of endorphins. Donning your activewear may be the last think you feel like doing after a long day, but you’ll feel much more energised after a solid gym sesh.

Yoga and meditation

This list wouldn’t be complete with at least one mention of meditation because the benefits have been proven time and time again. Yoga is a perfect exercise option for those who prefer something less rigorous and stretches and relaxes your body.

Meditation calms your mind, improves focus and decreases stress, a common modern cause of fatigue. The combination of both in a yoga class also assists in getting a good night’s sleep; just try not to start snoring during a guided meditation class.

Get organised

The people who said it’s all in the planning might have been on to something. With so many tasks to finish and notes sprawled across the desk, your head can feel all over the place.

Stick to that diary you bought at the start of the year and keep filling it daily with your schedule. If you’re one who’s attached to your iPhone, keep a schedule on there. Buy to-do lists, huge planners, whatever. There’s so many awesome stationary bits and bobs out there so spend some cash, write things down and schedule tasks. Your mind will feel less overwhelmed in no time.

Go to bed before midnight

Obviously it’s extremely difficult to stick to a bed-time, but aiming to be tucked in before the clock ticks over to the new day is quite achievable. Following the habits of the sun by being awake in the day and sleeping at night is the way our bodies have been naturally programmed.

Furthermore, sticking to a regular sleep schedule will train your body to go to sleep faster and get you into a routine where you’ll be able to get an optimal eight to nine hours of snoozing every night. Sleep is integral for brain function, so don’t discount it as part of your study routine during exam or assessment time.

If you’re in need of a short burst of energy or a quick fix, eat a chunk of at least 70 per cent dark chocolate for a burst of endorphins and, you know, treat yo’ self.

Grace Potter

Grace studies Communications & Media at the University of Wollongong and is an avid fan of Harry Potter and coffee.

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