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Students battle burnout

With finals on the horizon, students are thinking of the holiday season, spending time with family and long breaks from school. Despite the semester winding down, it often begins to feel like students are given more work than ever. Procrastinating hits hard during this time of year, and it’s more common than one may think. defines burnout as “when you feel overwhelmed, emotionally drained, and unable to meet constant demands.”

As work begins piling up, these are feelings many students are all too familiar with. It’s important to learn strategies to use when experiencing burnout.

“Burnout is really tough for a lot of students, especially getting so close to finals because we feel like there's so much pressure,” Lee Stanforth, a sophomore studying psychology, said.

Stanforth said it is important to remember to take breaks. If overwhelming feelings begin arising, it might be time to put away the assignments for a few minutes and take a step back. 

“I'd say every hour of studying I’m taking at least a 10-to-15-minute break where I'm reading or doing a craft or just scrolling on my phone,” Stanforth said.

Procrastination is not a foreign concept to many. Noah Rauch, a freshman studying exercise physiology, has joined many of his peers in procrastinating before. Still, he said its best to avoid it and that it is important not to become stressed too far in advance. 

“Just take one assignment at a time or realize that things are due soon, but I still have time to do them,” he said. “Also, try to not procrastinate as much.”

Students also suggested coming up with a plan to complete assignments. When assignments start to feel overwhelming, some proposed that it helps to create a to-do list that might help with organization. Maggie Champer, a senior studying interior architecture, said taking a break can be productive.

“I normally just try to take a step back from my work and come up with a game plan of how I can get my work done,” she said. 

Even though it may seem a bit intimidating, students have the opportunity to take advantage of professors’ office hours. These times are in place to guide and assist students with whatever they need, and professors can be one of the best resources to help with assignments.

“Professors will be very out and willing to lend you some of their burnout strategies or help you out at least with the sections in their class, so definitely utilize the professors because they're there for you, first and foremost,” Stanforth said. 

OU offers multiple resources to get help when experiencing burnout. There are many well-being initiatives, such as THRIVE, which strives to provide opportunities for students to connect. 

Sometimes, the best thing a person can do is ask for help. OU also offers counseling and psychological services, and these services can help students who are struggling. The cost of this counseling service is factored into tuition, so students undrer the Ohio Guarantee are elligible for CPS without additional fees.

As finals grow closer, students can find it hard to stay active, and physical activity is a great way to combat overwhelming feelings. Luckily, OU also offers a plethora of group fitness classes that encourage students to participate in physical activity. 

During a time when burnout is at such a high rate among students, it is important to think about using some of these strategies. They may be the key to making a difference in day-to-day life, and by the end of finals season, feelings of relief and accomplishment will flourish.


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