Overworking Isn’t Cool

Balancing work and play is the key to a successful semester

(pxhere, modified by Kristen Frier)

Now that you’re part way through your first semester, there’s one thing to keep in mind: work is coming. It’s inevitable, and if you’re not prepared, you could be overwhelmed. While struggles and stress are bound to happen, there is also fun to be had this semester.

No matter how heavy your course load is, work must always be balanced with play. Whether that means taking a Netflix binge break, playing video games, or, going out for a brisk walk, taking the time to de-stress is more important than you think.

This generation seems to have an unhealthy view on overworking; by pushing past one’s limits, as well as forsaking personal care and health, one can achieve success. While this can be true for those who could benefit from putting extra time and effort into their work, sacrificing your sanity and mental state for some project isn’t something worth destroying yourself over. The aftermath that results from overworking can include deep depression, anxiety, or a whole plethora of other harmful things.

There will come a time when you must sacrifice a visit to the bar with friends. I once missed seeing my friend perform one of his songs downtown during the brief period in which he was in the same province as me. That sucked a lot! However, by using the spare time I got, I was able to improve the overall quality of the project I was working on and got a better grade for it. Still, I would not always advise you to do what I did, which is basically forfeiting having fun with your buddies because of some piece of paper.

By balancing work and play, you’ll have better memory retention and more productive workload. Working for extended periods of time with your only breaks being bathroom breaks can result in mental deterioration and a diminished work output.

To avoid this situation, make it clear to yourself that relaxing is okay. Eventually you’ll get some free time after you’ve completed all of your assignments. Use that time to calm yourself and assess your priorities.

Still, stay on top of assignments, and don’t leave them to the last minute. It’s easy to get distracted by all the free time you’ve been given only to be horrified that the major assignment you haven’t started is due in a day and a half.

While play is important, it’s vital to avoid getting too carried away. Time flies when you’re having fun, and this is never truer than when you’re in university. It’s easy to fall into a cycle of fun around-the-clock, especially when the course you’re taking proves exceptionally boring. It’s a universally acknowledged truth that young people like to goof off a lot, and entering into university grants a level of independence many of us aren’t used to. Finally, we make the decisions.

However, after spending my first full semester undermining how much dedication and effort is required when it comes to being enrolled in a full course-load, I realize that being pushed to work hard can not be avoided.

Just remember that by remaining calm and keeping a healthy balance of work and play, this semester won’t be as overwhelming as it initially appears to be.


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