Day in the Life Of...
The Day in the Life of a graduate school student... Definitely not glamorous... usually not fun but sometimes fun... a lot of hardwork, a lot of wine and a lot of studying. But I'm sure you are looking for more than that from me.
Grad school sucks, sometimes I really truly hate it, and I don't want to feel that way. BUT then there are those times where I'm like " OHMYGOD THIS ALL MAKE SENSE, I'M SO SMART. WOW I'M SO COOL. TEACH ME EVERYTHING." then i have to study everything and I curse myself once again.
It's a rollercoaster of a relationship (yes I'm equating graduate school to a relationship... it's takes up just as much if not more of my time(&effort) then most relationships) and I'm sure I'm not the only one feeling that way. I'm currently finishing a semester in which I was in enrolled in 8 classes. I'm usually in class for at least 6 hours, usually 8 hours and on Wednesday I'm out of the house from 645am- 7pm. After all that, oh yeah we are supposed to study. We went through a special 6-8weeks where we had at least 1 test and 2 quizzes every week. Did I stay sane? Kind of How you ask? I'm happy to share.
First of all, the people I've met while in grad school have been great. Special shout out to MGH IHP Class of 2018 for being pretty awesome people and for being on the same page as me most days. W have struggled and succeeded through this semester together. Classmates share study guides and create mnemonics to help each other study. The 2nd years pass on practice tests and their study guides. I could not be more grateful.
Second, I live a 20 minute walk from school. Makes morning and evening "commutes" so much less stressful. The last thing I need after a long day is to sit in a car and watch people drive like idiots in this lovely city. Walking= being outside= natural stress reliever. Done.
Third, I joined the YMCA that is "on campus". MGH doesn't really have a campus, it's all in the Charlestown Navy Yard so the Y is also in the navy yard. I've been able to squeeze in workouts during my lunch breaks. It's really double duty-- I don't have to stress about when I will get to the gym and going to the gym midday gives me a nice break from classes. I never thought I would be that person going back to class or work after a workout. Ever. The idea of that sounded miserable to me but it's not... I kind of really love it. So for now, it works for me and I'll continue to do it.
Finally, I've made self care a priority. I've made my bedroom a little sanctuary of all my favorite stress relieving techniques... I have my candles, my incense, my himalayan salt lamp, my diffuser.... I could go on but you get it. I know what works for me and I do it. When I've had a long day slumped over my computer, I throw on my neck pillow, make myself some tea and diffuse some lavender essential oil to chill out for a second.
This is what works for me. It's taken some trial and error and some weeks I'm still beyond stressed and ready to lose it. I'm not perfect and I do get stressed out with the best of them. But I do what I can to combat the stress. So here are some of my top tips for staying sane in school)
My Top 5 Tips of Surviving Graduate School (or Undergrad or any school really)
- Have a good support system in your program
- Have a good support system outside of your program. Sometimes you need to get away and NOT talk about school for a while and not even be tempted to think about school.
- Create a workout plan that works for you. Whether it's going after class and reading books on the bike, working out on your lunch break or waking up early to get your day going-- Figure out what works for you and do it. once you create a plan it will take the guess work out of your workout (had to) and then you can enjoy it and feel good.
- Create a Self Care routine-- Yoga, meditating, oils, wine, tea, target practice with your lacrosse stick... to name a few that I may or may not have tried before....whatever it is DO IT. Self Care might take some time out of your daily life but it is so completely worth it. I won't rant here about that but I could go on four days
- Believe in yourself. You are smart and you can do this. End of Story. (that might be a little pep talk to myself also. oops.)
Anything you would add? Any special stress busters you would recommend? I've got two more years of school and many years of work ahead of me. I'll take all the help I can get.
If all else fails...(& you're in the Boston) Come Flow with me at Prana Power Yoga in Newton on Sundays at 7 am!