L

LOUNGING AROUND (AND RELAXING)

I apologise for taking so long between articles or letters, it has been a little over a month since I talked about the letter K and Kitchen Sharing, it’s only fitting that I have taken so long and the letter L talks about Lounging Around (And Relaxing).

However I haven’t become slack with columns because I’ve been lounging around and relaxing, in fact it’s quite the opposite.

The UOW 2014 academic year has just started as we all know, we’re getting ourselves back into work and assessment mode after our luxurious and much-loved three month summer break. First years are terrified about what uni will bring them and whether they will submit assessments in their very first week. Second years and beyond know that this scenario is never the case. Week one is always a week of overviews and get-to-know-yous. It’s not always stressful, but we’re not completely relaxed anymore like over the summer.

My summers in the past have been all about relaxing as I have lived in accommodations and therefore have had to move out year after year and I have had no job and couldn’t get one. This summer just passed has been an exception. In May last year I established my own freelance writing business and in the summer break I worked non-stop, in fact I’m taking a two-week “holiday” from work, this is my last week of my “holiday”. Holiday is a loose term as I have taken it due to the fact that I had a family wedding last week and this week of course is the first week of uni and I wanted the time away from work to be able to adjust back into uni mode, especially since this is my last year of uni. I also took the holiday in my last week of holidays as I realised I really didn’t have much of a holiday. I’m not totally complaining though because in my holidays when I didn’t have a job I always got bored, so I was happy to be busy and be getting paid for doing what I loved, which is what I have been at uni working for.

I don’t know how I’m going to balance everything once I go back to work, it take a little while, but I did manage to balance uni and work last year, however the exception this year is the fact that I am working more. I will find a balance eventually, but one of the most important parts to find this balance is making time for myself, giving myself a break every now and then and relaxing. This is something you should all remember.

We all have to work hard in uni, in work and in life. It’s not a bad thing to work hard, in fact for me it’s a motivator. Sometimes I work so much and so hard that I get to the point where I feel bad for taking a break or resting, as I feel lazy for doing so. But if you don’t lounge around, relax or take breaks, you’re only heading for a burn out. Is it easy to take breaks or find the right time to take breaks? No, like I said it’s all a balancing out. But if you burn out, you could suffer from mental and physical health affects which no-one wants. It’s okay to have “me time” in fact it is crucial in life.

So if your assessments are frustrated you, if you’re feeling overwhelmed, or just need a break–lie down, go outside for a work or exercise, take yourself out for lunch or catch up with friends. In my experience, taking a break clears your head and motivates you more when you get back to work.

Enjoy your first week of uni everyone, try not to stress out too much.

This column originally appeared on Tertangala and can be found here

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