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How can I deal with the study blues?

Common experience

A common experience with any university study, off-campus or on-campus, is the 'study blues'. Here, you might have had some experience with tertiary education and independent learning, but you've reached a point where you feel you are stuck in a rut and you're wondering which direction to take. Sometimes, it's simply that you've been maintaining your approach and you feel worried by the long stretch in front of you. Sometimes, failing an assessment task can contribute to this experience.

Recognise that this will happen. There will certainly be impediments to your study: illness, the death of loved ones, the time when your child crayons all over your well-presented assignment . We all face life stressors and they will inevitably have an impact on your study. You will also feel genuinely tired from coping with the off-campus juggle.

People tend to report the effect of the study blues in particular in the middle of the second semester of the year. Or, when they've got just three subjects to go before they complete their study program. Or, they've begun to undertake upper level units and need to re-orient themselves to a slightly different way of doing things. This is the study blues.

What to do

Whatever your specific circumstances, be strategic in your approaches: work smarter, not harder. Break down complex tasks into manageable chunks and celebrate your achievements as you go. Schedule the most intellectually demanding tasks for the times of the day when you're most productive and leave those dirty dishes until you decide to take a rest from study! Likewise, if you're tired, don't attempt a complex text that requires an engaged reading; instead, do lighter study-related tasks such as filing your notes, backing up computer files or downloading some resources. The other aspect to consider is to ensure you choose subjects you find easier in second semester. Keep the 'harder' ones to first semester or summer school. Refer to, to some recommended resources on studying at a distance and independent study.

There are also strategies outlined in What can I do when I'm finding it hard to maintain my effort and motivation?

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