Mountain of work? Turn survival basics into boosters

Getting through the endless mountain of university work can seem like a bit of a hard slog sometimes.  You’re exhausted, and you can’t seem to make progress on the your endless to-do list.  Luckily, you can take the literal life essentials, like food, water and sleep, and turn them into such much more than a bare essential.  Use the tips below to turn the basics into boosters, give you perspective and launch yourself at the next task with all cylinders firing!


In addition to the obvious of not starving to death while burying yourself in your studies, you can turn food into a bit of fun.  With my friends from halls I often find myself spontaneously making cookies or going on group supermarket trips.  The chats and laughs you get by turning food into a social activity is definitely worth the extra effort.  When things get busy it is easy to retreat into your shell and focus narrowly on yourself and everything that seems urgent.  Hanging out with friends for a few hours often puts your troubles into perspective and gives you a boost when you return to work.  Socialising gives you perspective, so do it over food!

Survival Basics: Food


Undoubtedly breathing is pretty important for survival, but you can take this instinctive process and turn it into a refreshing one.  Everyday on the walk to university I walk through a nature reserve, filled with trees and gorgeous native birds swooping through the branches.  Just taking a moment to pause, taking in a deep breath of the fresh air and appreciating everything around you can be truly invigorating.  It gives you perspective.  Challenges you may be experiencing seem like a drop in the ocean when compared to the intricate balancing act of the ecosystem.  Whatever you are experiencing is probably not the end of the world.  Nature gives you perspective, so take it in with a deep breath.

Survival Basics: Breathing


Of all the essentials, when things get hectic sleep is often the first to be neglected, and you quickly end up a student zombie.  Ideally you should get seven to nine hours sleep, but this doesn’t have to be at the same time every night. Doing work when you are tired is a losing battle, so shift your sleep time based on how alert you are feeling.  Instead of battling until midnight, I often go to bed at 10pm and get up at 6am to do some more work.  You’ll probably be more productive, and you might even get treated to a glorious sunrise!  So make sure you get enough sleep, but do it when it suits you.  Sleep gives you perspective and clarity, so time it well.

Survival Basics: Sleep

Harnessing these basic needs and turning them into boosters is  exactly what you need to do when you are feeling swamped with your workload.  It will only take a moment, you’ll feel all the better for it, with so much more perspective!