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The Christmas act

One of the hardest things about the Christmas period is that whilst there are so many deadlines and January exams to study for, this is also the time of year with the most festivities. It seems impossible to get it right; on the one hand, staying in and studying means you are doing your best in your degree. However, on the other hand, knowing friends will be getting mulled wine from the Christmas market while you sit inside on a dark, cold evening is enough to make you lose interest in working completely. With seasonal changes in light affecting mental health and overworking meaning you can be at risk of burnout or anxiety, getting the balance right is vital.

Here are some tips which I’ve found helpful in keeping on the right track.

1. Make sure that when you are studying, you are doing it effectively, and right
Understand the way that you work best. For me, waking up at a regular time and working in the morning is easiest – it’s when I have the greatest amount of energy, clarity and focus.

2. Establish a routine at the beginning of each week
Use a weekly planner – free online with a quick google search – and decide when you are going to work, what you are going to work on, and when you are going to stop and relax.

3. Don’t be overambitious
Be realistic about what you can actually get done in a day.

4. Pomodoro your way to greater focus
Human beings are incapable of focusing for large lengths of time without breaks, so try the Pomodoro technique. Set a timer for 25-40 minutes and work solidly. Take 5-10 minute breaks in between these chunks and step away from your laptop, make some tea, put up some decorations or do something else you enjoy.

5. Start your assignment today! 
We’ve all been there; a deadline feels like months away but before you know it there is only a week to go! Don’t be the person stuck indoors over Christmas because of deadline procrastination, get going now!

6. Eat that Frog! 
I use Brian Tracey’s Eat That Frog ABCD method to prioritise my work starting with the most important, scary tasks – the ‘A’s’, things you absolutely have to get done – all the way down to the ‘D’s’, bits which you could leave until later. You tackle the most horrible things at the beginning of the day when you have the most energy, and then that spurs you on to do the others. It also means if you don’t get the D, C, or even B tasks done, there is no guilt sucking your motivation the next day, and when you stop to enjoy coffee with a friend, you aren’t stressing about work.

7. 10 minute time trick
Struggling to get started? Just put on a timer for ten minutes and tell yourself that you will work steadily for just that tiny amount of time, no matter how terrible what you achieve is. Switch your phone off, close your door and do it. Telling yourself you just have ten minutes removes all the pressure of perfectionism, and before you know it, you’ll be pressing repeat on the timer and getting stuck in.

8. Don’t overwork

No matter what you might think, as long as you are doing your best that is enough. We are only human. Don’t completely cut out downtime just to get your deadlines in. Your mental health and wellbeing comes first…

If you need support now or over the holidays, speak to your lecturers or reach out to the Wellbeing team.

Written by Evanna Kappos, studying English Literature.

   December 5th, 2019    Exams and Assessment, Life on Campus, Miscellaneous, Studying, Undergraduate


Things that surprised me about the UK

When moving to England there are certain things everybody comments about, a little bit about the weather, a subtle comment about Netflix’s The Crown, perhaps even a nod towards the imaginary that they really love their tea. Additionally, you will most likely know a lot of things from the culture that undoubtedly moved you towards considering and eventually choosing a university on this lovely little island. For me, I knew quite a bit about the culture, my school was a ‘British School’, I had visited quite a few times, and some of my closest friends had done their undergrad in different British universities. So over-all, I felt I had a decent picture or understanding of how my time there would go.

Nonetheless, the theory of living in England and the practice of living in England are quite different things and within the reality of it, there were a few things that actually took me by surprise. These are things that are probably no secret to anyone, I even knew about some of them coming here, but, again, the way they played out made them come as a surprise. (more…)

   May 22nd, 2019    Life on Campus, Lifestyle


My guide to wellbeing and taking care of your mental health

It is that time of the year again – assignment deadlines are stacking up and exams are just around the corner…There is a lot to do, you have got essays to write, exams to revise for and it feels like you’re always busy. However, this blog post is here to tell you that your work and revision can wait, but your health, especially your mental health, should be your top priority.

It is normal to feel stressed, that just means you care about what you do and that is a great thing. Just remember you need breaks and a clear mindset in order to work well, so you need to allow yourself to take breaks. Here are some of my personal tips on what to do when you are starting to feel overwhelmed by everything in life.

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   May 13th, 2019    Exams and Assessment, International, Lectures and Seminars, Life in the South West, Life on Campus, Preparing for University, Studying     , , ,


Why I chose to study MA Theatre Practice at the University of Exeter

It is that time of year, the time where the questions about your next step become more imminent and the pressure seems to be slightly on as the possibility to apply to a number of universities opens again. Thinking about the future, how this one decision seems to have much more weight than the others in shaping what your life will turn out to be. And to be quite honest the fact that there is a huge variety of options for “what to study?” “where to study?” “why there and not here?”, makes the whole process even more daunting. Now to that added stress factor in that you might be considering moving away from your country to study abroad.

If you are indeed thinking about doing your undergrad or your postgraduate studies abroad, I am not going to deny that it can be harder to make this decision. This is mainly because most of us cannot visit campus on open days and are essentially missing out on the one to one information and the vibe that you can get from the university during these events. As a result, we must rely heavily on the information we find online about accommodation, studies, social life, academic style: literally every aspect of what “uni life” means.

Taking this into account allow me to help you (even in the slightest) by telling you how I came to the decision of choosing Exeter. And why, even though is not technically a “drama academy”, I stand by my choice of studying theatre in a university as opposed to any other option. (more…)

   April 30th, 2019    International, Life on Campus, Miscellaneous, Postgraduate, Preparing for University


BSc Business in Penryn – New York City Field Trip

One of the really cool things about studying BSc Business at the Penryn Campus is the field trips!

Our group on the first day at the Statue of Liberty

I am currently in my third year, and have just come back from an incredible field trip to NYC for my BEP3090 Research Module.  The premise of the module was to perform a mainly ethnographic study on an independently proposed research topic.

The idea was to give students the opportunity to observe business operation and internal dynamics in real life, in a national or an international context. On the trip, we were given access to international organisations and institutions through visits, guided tours, networking and informal interactions.

For my topic, I chose to observe the ways in which different organisations brand themselves to be ‘sustainable’ and whether or not these brand images held true in reality.

Read below to see a bit more of what we got up to throughout the week. (more…)

   April 11th, 2019    Cornwall, Higher Education, International, Lectures and Seminars, Life on Campus, Miscellaneous, Penryn Campus, Studying, Studying abroad, Undergraduate


Road trip in Cornwall – The Minack Theatre, St Michael’s Mount and Land’s End

I have almost finished my degree. I’ve submitted my last assignments and finished my lectures. The only thing I still have to do is to finish my dissertation. To make the most out of my last days as a student, my friends and I decided to explore Cornwall a bit more and visit these three amazing places.  (more…)

   April 9th, 2019    Cornwall, Exploring Devon and Cornwall, International, Life in the South West, Life on Campus, Lifestyle, Penryn Campus, Undergraduate     , , , , , , , ,


Field trips on the BSc Business programme

One of my favourite things about being on BSc Business is the wealth of fun field trips we get to go on throughout the three years.

To give you a better picture of some of the cool places you could be visiting if you go on the course, I’ve decided to compile a list of my highlights from the past three years so far. (more…)

   April 7th, 2019    Cornwall, Higher Education, International, Lectures and Seminars, Life on Campus, Miscellaneous, Penryn Campus, Studying, Undergraduate


UK survival tips (beauty tips, general concerns around British weather and living environment)

Living in a new environment with a different culture and climate is definitely challenging. Keep reading if you are keen for some beauty tips to help you survive the harsh winter days and the solution to the myths about British weather and living environment.

(more…)

   March 14th, 2019    International, Life in the South West, Life on Campus, Lifestyle, Preparing for University, Studying abroad


Why I chose to study Psychology at the University of Exeter

I know that deciding what university to attend is an incredibly important and difficult decision – I’ve done it. That’s why I’m here to tell you some of the reason why I chose the University of Exeter. (more…)

   February 12th, 2019    Exploring Devon and Cornwall, International, Life on Campus, Miscellaneous, Preparing for University, Studying, Studying abroad, The city of Exeter, Undergraduate


My 3 favourite places in Exeter

Just had an exceptionally stressful exam? Finished and handed-in a lengthy and demanding assignment? Or are you just feeling a bit bored and want to do something fun in Exeter? If any answer to those questions is yes, then this article is especially for you. In this blog post I want to show you my favourite places around Exeter, as it’s always great to get out for a walk and explore the city. Whether you just want to let off some steam, sit down and enjoy your favourite book in the same spot that Jane Austen did or do some sports such as kayaking, then I’ve got you covered! After living in Exeter for over a year I have travelled, on my old rust (but vintage!) bike, to many interesting places. However, there are places I always love to come back to and from those I tailored and chose my favourite three. I selected places that are close to University of Exeter (I swear!) and to get there won’t take longer than 30 minutes’ walk. So, without further ado here is my complete guide of 3 places that you should visit in Exeter.

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   January 25th, 2019    International, Life in the South West, Life on Campus, The city of Exeter, Undergraduate


Where is Exeter? What’s student life like in Exeter? Here are the answers to some FAQs from international students

I worked at several education fairs last summer on behalf of the University of Exeter and there were a few questions that were popular from prospective students and their parents. I have compiled a list of questions and answered them here, hopefully it is helpful to all international students who may be wondering some of the same things.

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   December 18th, 2018    Clearing, Exams and Assessment, Food and eating, Freshers Week, International, Lectures and Seminars, Life in the South West, Life on Campus, Preparing for University, Studying, The city of Exeter, Undergraduate


Day in life of a 3rd year Business student on the Cornwall Campus

This year is my last year at the university. Dissertation, consultancy project, graduate job, assignments, part-time work and personal life – sounds like it is going to be the busiest year. Here I’m going to explain how my day usually looks like.

Let’s start! (more…)

   October 30th, 2018    Cornwall, International, Lectures and Seminars, Life in the South West, Life on Campus, Miscellaneous, Penryn Campus


Spending an Autumn’s Day in Exeter

 

A blush spreads across the trees. Gremlins, ghouls and freshmen anticipate All Hallows’ Eve and pumpkin spice lattes. It is autumn in England! As a Pakistani who grew up in Multan’s desert heat, autumn was always a briefly snatched season, with the trees barely changing colour before winter arrived. In Exeter, autumn paints trees and vines red and yellow and burns them orange, in a brief little cheer before winter. Drawing on from how I spent a day recently, here’s a guide to an autumn’s day in Exeter. (more…)

   October 19th, 2018    Food and eating, International, Life in the South West, Life on Campus, Miscellaneous, Postgraduate, The city of Exeter


Some tips and advice for the new students (Cornwall Campus)

Starting your new life at university might be scary but here you can find a little bit of information about what to do first when you’re on campus, where to get more information about Freshers events as well as get some tips from the current students. (more…)

   September 18th, 2018    Cornwall, Freshers Week, International, Life in the South West, Life on Campus, Penryn Campus, Preparing for University, Studying, Undergraduate


Global Chums mentoring scheme: interview with Amelia

I signed up to be a Global Chums mentor in Spring of 2017, at the same time as I signed up to be an academic mentor. I wanted to be an academic mentor because I’d had one myself, who was extremely supportive and helpful whenever I needed it. As for Global Chums, it was the first year of the scheme and the organizer sent everyone e-mails asking for prospective mentors, and it sounded like a great way to share the things I’d learned about being a foreigner on this particular campus, but also of meeting new people from all sorts of places. So I know what my experience has been like, but since I was never a Global Chums mentee, I can’t really recommend it on my own behalf. So I sat down for hot chocolate with one of my mentees, Amelia from New Zealand, to ask her about her experience and whether she’d recommend the scheme to incoming international students. (more…)

   September 13th, 2018    Cornwall, International, Life in the South West, Life on Campus, Miscellaneous, Penryn Campus, Preparing for University


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