Advice with Chickie: How to avoid second semester burnout

Hi Chickie, I am already burnt out and it’s only the first week of school! It’s so hard getting out of bed in the morning, and I’m always tired. Please help! From, Jenny L. 

Hi Jenny, 

     Welcome to second semester! The sun is out, the air is brisk, and the dread of school is at an all-time high. Get your hot beverage and your blanket and learn how to get over the high hurdles that come with the burnout that is spring semester.  

     It sounds like you’re waking up with groggy eyes and not wanting to leave the warmth of your bed. Are you snoozing your alarm for five more minutes hoping that the slight closing of your eyes will save you from sleep deprivation? Trying to break those winter break sleeping schedules can be one of the hardest parts about coming back to school in January.  

     Some tips and tricks that can be helpful for breaking those habits are much simpler than you may think. When it comes to fixing your sleep schedule try to start small. If you are going to bed at midnight, start moving your bedtime up by 15 minutes per night until you reach the time you know will get you a solid number of hours.  

     Waking up in the morning is a whole different story. Your bed is warm, and your blankets are your best friend. That alarm jolts you awake in the most aggressive way possible, and the sound is what you hear in your nightmares — it’s the one thing you do not want to hear in the morning, so what do you do? You turn it off as quickly as possible and turn over. 

     Great, now your alarm is off, but you are still in bed. Closing your eyes for just 2 more minutes, then BOO, it is 1 hour later. You are late for class.  

     Try setting your phone on the other side of the room before you go to bed. This way when that awful sound goes off you are forced to get out of your bed and turn it off.  

     Burnout can be caused by the most unexpected things. Most of the time these don’t have anything to do with school itself but the habits you have formed over those glorious 4 weeks of break.  

     Sleeping and taking care of yourself mentally and physically can alter the way you view life and academics. All those three listed are connected; without sleep, you are tired and not as motivated to move your body, and when you don’t move your body, you can fall into multiple forms of unhealthy mental health habits.  

     Taking care of yourself can be the start of how you view life in the new year and semester. These goals and routines for yourself do not have to be large and overwhelming. Find out what works for you. What allows you to relax before bed? How can you reduce stress in your life to be able to pursue more extracurricular activities? Take the time to sit down and find out what you need for you.  

     You matter. Your health matters. Burnout can be avoided, and do not let people try to tell you that it can’t.  

Your friend,