With less than a month left of our masters programme and the ongoing dissertation season currently on everyone’s mind, it’s so easy to get lost in the chaos around you. Here are 5 things you could do to ease out some dissertation stress.
Debunking dissertation stress

Plan and organise

First things first, plan and organise your day. Create a to-do list of everything you want to achieve in the day and set reasonable deadlines for yourself. One thing that’s helping me in this dissertation period is having a set idea of how much I want to achieve by the end of the day. Though I’m still learning that it’s okay if things go out of schedule, starting your day with a clear plan will help chalk out events in the day and give you time to destress and refresh for the next big chunk of writing.

Videos and sessions

Another good idea would be to go back to the dissertation writing videos and sessions that were organised by the Business School to catch up on, if you feel stuck in writing. Moreover, at the start of this month, the Business School organised writing sessions and other events so if you happened to be a part of either of those, you may have gotten some materials to go through! These sessions are specially designed and organised by the Business School to help you improve your writing, revisit your dissertation structure and more.

Read and revisit but also reset

Don’t forget to celebrate small wins and meeting self-curated deadlines. More importantly, find time to rest your mind and reset your body to effectively work the next time you get to it. According to the effort-recovery model, rest breaks, which involve interrupting the job in order to recover, is a viable way to decrease fatigue associated with high work demands. This all the more emphasises the need to rest and take breaks to recharge and reset your mind. Spend time to read your points and revisit them the next day. For all you know the points you wrote with your sleep-deprived mind have a different meaning the next day!

Don’t compare your progress

It’s important to remember that everyone works differently, everyone’s speed is different and moreover, everyone’s deadlines and targets are different. So, don’t compare your progress with others! It’s so easy to get lost in the chaos of working non-stop because you probably came across a peer post a story of them working on social media. Does that make you feel less productive? Stop and remember, you’re working well according to your deadlines.

Support each other

With everyone working on interesting yet different topics, supporting each other through this season is the only thing able to keep everyone sane. Set realistic deadlines. Get some fresh air (check the weather app!), walk around George Square to catch the beginnings of the festivities and plan events to attend during the Fringe Festival and lastly, put your best work forward! Take a deep breath and continue working on your dissertation. All the best! We’ve got this!

Rhema Joseph is studying MSc International Human Resource Management (class of 2022).