Masters Student, Blessing shares her advice on completing a Masters without tears.
Are you panicking and wondering what this year will be like? Remember that the decision to start on a Master’s programme is a brave and courageous one. This sometimes causes pressure on the student with the view to “make it the best!” There’s a tendency to fight to win, but it isn’t a battle after all, it is just another degree that will soon be completed.
Do other people feel the same as me?
This maybe your first time far from home, instead of being scared, choose to view it from an adventure perspective. Do you sometimes wonder why everyone else is cheerful and beaming with excitement while you feel overwhelmed? People handle issues in different ways, and it’s normal to feel a little overwhelmed. But there are ways to handle it. Below are some points I’ve learnt from my own experience:
Be kind to yourself
Maybe you are an ‘A’ student and want to keep it up or you want to prove your intelligence this time. These are good ambitions but they should not lead you into a fearful lifestyle. There is a saying that 85% of what people worry about never happens (Don Joseph Goeway).
Join societies/ clubs
This was a helpful tool for me. The Students Union (RUSU) has a variety of societies with extracurricular activities where one can join to socialise, network, and even make some good friends.
Make a list of what you have to do. Estimate how long each task will take and apportion some time to it, be realistic! Also include moments of relaxation; a good sleep should not be overlooked. Set monthly targets, having a daily and/or weekly to-do list is necessary.
Why stand alone when there’s help around? A good support network can be helpful when the going gets tough. The University has a wide range of student support services.
Eat well! Busy schedules can cause you to make do with the easiest option of snacking. Constant grabbing of crisps and cups of coffee in order to keep alert will not nourish the body. A nutritious diet improves your mood and helps you function well. Instead of a bag of crisp, grab an apple or banana to keep the energy going.
The combination of a nutritious diet and exercise keeps the body in a good condition for productivity. While going to the gym is helpful, running round the block or at the park with friends is also a good form of exercise without cost!
Lastly, picture the bright end! Therefore, whatever effort you have to put in will eventually be worth it!