Why can't I study well?
Overstrained during your studies - tips and information to make your studies successful
First of all, you have to find the cause that leads to excessive demands in your studies. Here are the five most common mistakes that lead to overwhelm:
1. To fill up the timetable:
First-year students tend to want too much at the beginning and hardly leave a gap in their timetable. The rule here is very clear: less is more! Better to study for a semester or two longer than to cross the finish line with shortness of breath! Tips on how to avoid an overly crowded timetable can be found in our article "Creating a timetable".
2. Private life is neglected:
Those who have too much to do during their studies often prefer to leave friends rather than one or two events on the schedule. Without social contacts and friends, we get sick in the long run. Work-life balance starts with your studies!
3. Workload too high:
It is better to skip a course in the timetable than to meet your best friend. Stop putting pressure on yourself.
4. Too few breaks:
Wanting to learn nonstop is an exemplary attitude, but not particularly effective. Our brain also needs a break in between. A walk in the fresh air or a bit of exercise is the best way to reduce stress and recharge your batteries.
5. Always study alone:
Not everyone can learn well in a group. However, a study group makes sense to clarify open questions and to exchange ideas with fellow students. Our learning tips are sure to help you too.
The good news is: you can avoid all the mistakes! In the next section, we'll tell you what else you can do better.
How you can prevent excessive demands in your studies
Good time management, strategic planning and stress management are the best protection against feeling overwhelmed. At the beginning of the course it is therefore useful to look at the module handbooks and sample timetables for the course and also to ask the student advisory service whether there are any dependencies between individual modules. This planning allows you to structure and plan the timetable well, especially if you have to repeat an exam, plan a semester abroad or a longer internship.
Create weekly plans
Weekly plans are a useful aid in order not to lose track of things. In addition to university obligations, you should also enter private appointments here in order to have an overview of all upcoming tasks.
Targeted preparation and follow-up
The attempt to catch up on all of the subject matter at the end of a semester usually fails. The better way is to prepare and follow up events accordingly during the semester. You should plan one hour of follow-up time per lesson. If you already underline the passages in the preparation for a seminar that were not understandable or very complicated, you will increase your attention during the course and can concentrate better on what has been said. This variant of preparation saves time and is extremely effective.
Exchange with fellow students
Good contacts with fellow students are essential during your studies. A close network is not only suitable for making friendships. Also for exchanging transcripts and notes as well as for queries if you did not understand something. The inhibition threshold to ask a fellow student something is lower than to reveal his comprehension difficulties to the lecturer.
What is important today and what is not? Students need to learn to prioritize their daily lives. What is not important can be put on the back burner and sometimes completely deleted. In general, it is important to free yourself from the thought of always having to do everything.
The breaks in between are just as important as well-structured days. Deliberately give yourself time out without thinking about the next task. A short walk can help, as can exercise or a little power nap.
All the tips we give you are of no use if your time management isn't working yet. But don't worry, it doesn't have to work overnight and time management can really be learned by anyone!
Time management is important in order to successfully complete your studies without being overwhelmed. Most universities offer seminars on time management and stress management in their courses. If you notice that you cannot structure your everyday life on your own, that your own plans constantly collide with each other and that creating a schedule puts you under stress, take advantage of the offers at your university. Here you will be taught how to organize yourself and your everyday life in the best possible way.
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