Postgrad Cara on balancing life and your studies over summer

Image of a weekly planner

We understand that the academic year has not ended for Postgrads and although completing your studies is important, it is equally as important to balance this with your social life. So here are some top tips on how you can work hard but still enjoy the summer:

Use a planner

This is a great way to keep track of your plans. Don’t say no to those family BBQs or pub trips with friends just because you have work to do. Make sure you schedule in your social plans, alongside any deadlines or work shifts you have. Visually seeing what you have planned allows you to not overbook yourself over the summer. 

Image of a weekly plannerMake a routine

This doesn’t need to be a strict routine but use this as a guideline for what you want to achieve daily or weekly. Set yourself daily to-do lists overviewing what you what to get done each day. This can evoke a sense of accomplishment and boost your motivation for the rest of the week. 

A good tip is to treat your studies like a working week, where you only work within the hours of 9am-5pm. This lets you have your evenings and weekends free but still gives you plenty of hours in the week to get what you need to do done. 

Stay healthy

Make sure to get enough sleep each night. Working on not enough sleep can cause you not to perform to your best ability. Getting enough hours of sleep not only helps your work performance, but also your mental and physical health. 

Give yourself breaks to not overwork yourself. Don’t keep yourself cooped up inside all day. Pop out for a short walk between your study sessions. If it’s a rainy day, why not go for a drive? Or watch a quick episode of a show.

Ensure you’re drinking and eating enough water and food in the day. This can help you work for longer as you’re fuelling your brain. It’s also extremely important you’re looking after yourself during this time, as you may feel under pressure and stressed.

Image of a pile of books and a mug in a study spaceMake sure to have a good workspace

Having a dedicated and clear workspace is important as you will be spending a lot of time there. If you’re working at home, make sure to let your family or friends know when you are working so they know not to disturb you. If you don’t have a desk at home, find a café near you to work in. Or if you need quiet when you are working, have a search online for your nearest public library. 

Stay motivated

Remember your end goal and how accomplished you’ll feel. Even daily ‘wins’ i.e. reaching a word count target or making notes on a certain amount of literature can help you feel inspired to keep going. 

We hope these tips help you and we wish you all the best with your studies, dissertations or research. If you need advice over summer, make sure to get in touch with Guild Advice who are available to support you virtually.


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