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Reggie Responds #16

Welcome to Reggie Responds! Our advice column is taken over by Positive Peers this month, as part of Take Time In, which is KCLSU’s campaign on 4-21 May to support positive wellbeing for students online during this exam period.

Q: I am stressed out about deadlines – how should I deal with numerous tasks with the same deadline?

Josefina: This time of year is always stressful for everyone, and it has only been exacerbated by having to do everything online. I understand what you’re feeling and how overwhelming it is when it feels like everything is due at the same time and you have no idea where or how to even start. One way I like to stay on top of deadlines is by dividing the assignment into smaller subtasks and going through each thing one step at a time, so it feels less daunting. If I get tired or bored of a certain subject or module, I’ll switch it up and work on another assignment.

Most importantly, I try to have a good balance of work and rest, as it’s so easy to get wrapped up in work and neglect your mental health and wellbeing. It is important to take small breaks every so often and do something that you enjoy so you don’t feel burnt out, which is why I love Take Time In as there are so many different options. To manage stress, I like to work with friends when I can (it doesn’t even have to be in person; you can do Teams or Zoom calls too!) because they help to motivate me and hold me accountable to actually work. Another thing I find helpful is to find a study space that makes me feel good and productive. This can be anything from a cafe, your garden, your favorite spot in the library, or even your bedroom. A good space really helps me to get in the zone and work productively, so I can get everything done on time.

I hope this helps, and good luck with your deadlines!

Q: I don’t like mixing with people very much, just because I’m introverted. What do you think I should do to have a better social life?

Chloe: As an introvert myself, this really resonates with me. I, personally, have always found it hard to build up the courage to socialise with strangers or commit to social gatherings and not regret it afterwards.

I think it is important to understand that having a good social life does not necessarily mean having more friends or knowing more people. Quality over quantity applies to friendships too. You should surround yourself with people you can trust, whom you feel comfortable around and genuinely enjoy spending time with. Your friends should be able to accept your introversion and appreciate all its perks. If you find that you are constantly exerting yourself to expand your circle and be ‘friends’ with people just for the sake of it, it will not only be a waste of your energy, but it will also take a toll on your mental health.

During the times I actively try to socialise more, what has generally worked for me is to start small and find commonalities. For example, you can attend taster sessions of the societies you are interested in and try to make friends with people there. This way, at least you will be able to meet people with similar interests and have something to talk about (perfect if you despise boring small talk). If you’re enjoying the sessions and like the people there, awesome! If not, that’s okay too, you don’t need to commit to it. This may sound selfish, but the basis for having a good social life is also to understand yourself and know what makes YOU comfortable. Think about the great friendships you have. What works? What doesn’t work? Good relationships are always reciprocal. Once you acknowledge what you are comfortable with contributing to a relationship, your friends on the receiving end will also appreciate it.

If you want to submit a question, you can do so here.

If you’d like to pick up more tips and tricks to look after your wellbeing, join the Positive Peers’ Thrive sessions! You can also check out the Positive Peers website and the KCLSU Wellbeing Hub to explore what’s on offer.

Chloe Xiao
Josefina Martinez

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