I’ve been back for less than three weeks now and term has just kicked off. If I’m honest, I found it incredibly difficult to settle in to uni this term and the thought of my dissertation looming over me has been unsettling to say the least. I’m not really sure why, perhaps the whole ‘change’ thing hasn’t gone down well. My previous years haven’t been as trying as this one and I’m not entirely sure why.
In the first week I was absolutely miserable at the fact that I had to face another year of studying, working in a job that I found dull, whilst half of my friends remained at home. Thus, it was hard to find the motivation to do anything. As someone that suffers from anxiety, I know the warning signs when I’m beginning to lose myself and I had to snap myself out of it. Joining the gym meant that I actually had to put on some clothes that didn’t resemble a tracksuit and look presentable for a couple of hours of the day, so this assisted in the process of behaving like a human being.
A meeting with my dissertation supervisor helped to get the ball rolling too, as I left feeling inspired and motivated for once. At first, I thought I was going to get a scolding for not doing any work over the summer and then I remembered that my supervisor wasn’t my mother, and doing the work was up to me and no one else.
Last year, when choosing our dissertation topics, we were instructed to choose one that inspired our thought processes and genuinely interested us. So I chose drug consumption in the raver culture and wanted to explore why students in particular take drugs – are they trying to escape something?
I’ve found that making baby steps towards my dissertation helps in gradually building up the blocks for the mammoth piece of work that taunts me increasingly over time. So, my first step was creating an outline of a question. Now I need to focus the question and begin the reading process. One thing that I have definitely learnt at university so far is that it’s important to start early, in order to avoid pulling my hair out, strand by strand.
Hopefully, this ounce of motivation will continue to grow in the most important year of my studies thus far. You could say I’m a little bit nervous, yes!