Student Life can help with burnout, lack of motivation issues

Kate Coffman, Arapahoe Pinnacle Contributor

With midterms nearly upon us, academic burnout can be a big problem for students – especially those who work.

Fortunately, mental and physical burnout have warning signs. And if students can successfully overcome burnout, they can perform better at work and school, and they will feel better physically and mentally.

Betsy Floyde, LCSW, the counselor for ACC students, students need to balance their academic lives and social lives. Finding tricks that work, like setting specific time windows for studying and relaxing, may help students overcome procrastination.

Burnout, or lack of motivation, is a common problem for students. Knowing the warning signs and symptoms can help students realize that they need to correct their behavior, seek help or both.

Some of the symptoms include lasting fatigue or mental exhaustion, declining performance at school or work, negative emotions, and inability to process or remember new information.

The easiest way to stay motivated is to avoid the situations that tend to lead to burnout. Busy students have a tendency to focus all of their attention on work and school and therefore isolate themselves during the semester in order to get everything done.

But this is one of the worst mistakes a student can make. Isolation can lead to depression, anxiety and a loss of motivation. Many times physical well-being gets ignored and students give up sleep, exercise and healthy eating. The financial strain of paying tuition can also make working students feel discouraged and less productive in low-paying jobs.

Although to serious students it may feel impossible to keep up a healthy lifestyle while juggling school and a job, it’s not impossible. Having friendly social interaction with others can help students unwind and de-stress. Exercise is also a great way to destress since it releases endorphins. Students should practice pacing themselves throughout the semester; working on assignments gradually and not leaving things until the last minute.

It also is important to take periodic breaks from studying, but set a time limit to avoid getting distracted and abandoning the work.

ACC offers counseling services — advice and assistance — to all of its students. Each student can receive up to eight sessions per year free of charge. Appointments can be made by stopping by Student Life in room M2820 on the second floor near the student lounge, by calling 303-797-5668 or by emailing [email protected]