Motivation 101

7 Key-Steps to Motivate and Inspire Your Team - Invista

Trying to keep motivated throughout your studies can be difficult and stressful. Especially during this time, most students were told to go home from March because of the pandemic and let’s be honest, it threw everyone. Specific assignments couldn’t be done, coursework had to be changed. It was just a panicked mess, but we coped with it. I know I struggled with keeping myself motivated to do work at Uni and at home. So I’ve researched into a few tips on how to keep on top of everything, whilst still enjoying your Uni life!

Create a Schedule

Whatever you’re trying to keep motivated with, whether that’s the working out or studying, keeping to a schedule is a great way to stick to it. I would suggest creating a weekly schedule with specific days and times in place to keep to those things. Whilst I was at Uni, I tried to keep a specific day and time for extra studying for a particular module. I also tried creating a plan for going to the gym, although that quickly failed.

Your Goals

Remembering why you’ve gone to University in the first place is a good way to keep yourself motivated. For most people it’s to better their future and get a career in something they’re really passionate about.

Healthy Balance is Key

The Motivating Power of Progress

Trying to find a balance between everything you do at Uni is key to keeping yourself motivated. This is so that you don’t burn yourself out too much concentrating on one thing. As an example, if you concentrate too much on studying you can find that you don’t put any free time in for yourself, which will just make you more stressed about the work.

Remember, everyone is going through the same thing when they start University. It may take just a little bit of time to adjust. But try to keep yourself motivated and you can achieve whatever you want to.

Signature for my posts. I end every post with a love heart

Ellis x

#FriendshipDay

Happy Friendship Day 2020: Wishes, Messages, Images, Quotes ...

The 30th July is also known as Friendship Day! This is classed as a holiday and is celebrated in several countries.

Whilst you’re at University, you’ll meet so many different people. Some you may even keep in contact with for the rest of your life. If you’re worried or anxious about making friends at University, here’s a few things you can do to overcome those worries.

Join Societies

By joining different societies, you’ll end up meeting loads of new people. There’s a list of societies on the Edge Hill’s website which you can look into. From Cheerleading to Tabletop society, there’s something for everyone! Edge Hill also offers extra classes for learning languages if this is something you’re interested in.

Click on this link to find out what societies and clubs Edge Hill offers.

Online Group Chats/Pages

Joining these online chats and pages is a good way of introducing yourself. When I joined the Edge Hill Freshers page, I posted what Halls I was in. Within the first hour, I got added into the flat group chat, and this made me feel much more settled when I moved onto Campus.

Organise an Outing Together

Jigsaw Bury - Looking forward to Pizza & Games Night tonight ...

If you’ve joined a group chat for University, asking to see whether they want to go out is a good way of making friends. There’s a few independent cafes, pubs and restaurants in Ormskirk that you could go to. When I first joined a group chat with people in my accommodation, we planned to have a night in together, playing games with pizza to get to know each other.

Remember, you have a whole 3 years of making friends at University. You could end up joining a society in your second or third year, and meet people you’ve never met before. Making friends doesn’t just happen overnight, but making an effort trying goes a long way.

Signature for my posts. I end every post with a love heart

Ellis x

What I Love About our Campus

Edge Hill University is a campus based university, with all its facilities on one site. There’s so much to see and do on our campus, and in this blog, I’ll discuss what I love about our campus!

How Close Everything Is

Having everything so nearby is great, especially as I have mobility problems. Knowing lessons are a couple of minutes away is comforting, and it also means you’re able to go to other facilities relatively easily between lessons. If you want to get a coffee with coursemates during a break, you can go to one of the many cafes on campus; you’ll never be far from one!

The Sights to See

There’s many great sights to see on our campus. We have lakes and gardens; and they make for nice places to socialise, rather than being inside during the summer. They’re also home to ducks, squirrels, rabbits, and even hedgehogs! If your accommodation is in Founders, you’ll be near the gardens. If you’re in Chancellor’s, you’ll get a nice view of the fountains and water; maybe even our beach!

Facilities

I might sound like a broken record, but I love coffee and our cafes. If you bring a re-usable cup to certain cafes, you’ll even get a discounted price!

Our Catalyst is fantastic. It’s very modern; checking out and returning books using machines feels like something I would see in a film.

I love using our Clinical Skills and Simulation Centre for our course. We’ve only been in there a few times in our Foundation Year, but I can’t wait to use it more and more as the years go on!

The Accommodation

Our accommodation is award winning, and for good reason. We have halls for everyone; alcohol-free, quiet halls, same-sex, etc. and the rooms are fantastic! I’ve seen all of the rooms and I think they’re all a great size. As well as this, they’re all very affordable! I recommend you check out images online here, and take accommodation tours on an Open Day!

Closing Words

I love our campus. I’m looking forward to studying and living here for the next five years for all the reasons listed, and more! I’m really missing our campus, and I can’t wait until it opens up again.

-Tony

My First Year – Living On Campus

My first year at Edge Hill is coming to a close, with only two pieces of coursework left, and living back at home now, it’s an apt time to take a look back on things, my chosen topic for today is living on campus. 

It’s very fair to say that living on campus agreed with me so much I’m doing it next year too, and most likely in my third year after my sandwich placement. Being able to be close to everything I could ever need removes the stress of moving away from home since I don’t live near Edge Hill at all out of term time. 

I chose Chancellors Court as my first choice, and got it! If you’re applying for accommodation right now, I suggest thinking critically about your first choice as there’s a chance you just might get it. Most of the Chancellors accommodation is near the Durning Centre (Where you get your post) and the Catalyst, but mine was situated higher up campus by the Sports Centre. Before you ask, yes my flat was the one the EHU Instagram, communicating with the gym through post-it notes. We wasted so many post-it notes doing that.

Chancellors Court – My building on the right.

In your first year, if you have Facebook, you’re in the relevant groups, and you’re pro-active, you’ll be able to find most, if not all of you the people in your hall. Finding mine prior to moving in made things a lot more relaxed on moving in day, and made me a lot more confident. 

Like you will evolve at university, your room shall too. My room started pretty minimalist and ended up becoming a bit of a mess by the end of the year. Don’t be afraid to make purchases like fans, other things for your room, if you feel like you need them, you need them. 

Everyone’s experiences living on campus will always differ, as no one person will have the same flatmates, accommodation building, prior life experiences, as someone else. For myself, living on campus was a fun and exciting challenge that I excelled at, for others it might be more challenging and they might need a little bit of support in places. Either path you feel you might go down, living on campus at least once is a must-do. 

Alice.

Finding Part-time Work…On Campus!

Before I started my degree, I was working full-time. As I live with my boyfriend and not with family I have to support myself independently, so at an absolute minimum, I knew one part-time job would be necessary to get me through my degree.

I now work as a support worker for adults with learning disabilities and the shifts fit around my studies perfectly, not to mention the fact that it’s one of the most rewarding roles in the world! However, from time to time I find myself missing the creativity of my old career in marketing and I often find myself needing an extra injection of cash when the student loan runs low. So, I work for Edge Hill!

That’s right, there are opportunities for students to work in all kinds of roles all over our beautiful campus – even if you don’t live in halls. I work as Digital Content Assistant, covering events and creating content such as Instagram stories for the university, as well as writing for this blog every month. These little creative outlets bring me so much joy and give me peace of mind that some extra money is coming in when times get tough.

You can check out the latest jobs on campus here or look further afield for work off-campus and around Ormskirk or the surrounding areas here. If you need support with your application forms, cover letters or CV then you will find instructions on how to access all of that here. Good luck!

Sam xo

Student Finance – Northern Ireland.

Hey everyone, it is coming to that time in your university journey that you have to start thinking about your finances to support you throughout the academic year and beyond. Coming from Northern Ireland, my experience with student finance was slightly different but not that scary at all. 

Applying for your student finance well in advance before the closing date is so essential as sometimes, the application forms do not get approved straight away due to a small mistake or the incorrect information being given.

The first thing I did when applying to student finance was talk to someone who had already been through it. I spoke to my cousin who had been through it a couple of times and she was the one who told me to look online before I started. She also told me that it was easier if I applied for student finance online rather than through the document that was given to me at school. This was because if there was a mistake in the hard copy of the application it would take longer to send back and then have to post it away again once it was corrected. The student finance Northern Ireland website actually advises this as well.

As you probably already know, you need to be careful about what application form you download and so, there are a couple of things you need to check before you start to fill in the application form. Firstly make sure that you are applying for the correct academic year, that you chose the undergraduate or postgraduate form and if you are a full time or part time student. This information is essential to check before beginning the form.

The application form is quite long but as I said there is a lot of guidance on the website that you can download. I found these really helpful as the process can be quite overwhelming and some of the questions can be confusing. Just remember to keep checking over what you have done to minimise the chances of it being sent back again.

Also, when it comes to the part in the application that requires you to fill in household income, it might be useful to have your parents/guardians around you to ensure that you get the correct information as this will affect how much money you recieve. On the student finance NI website there is a guide that parents and guardians can read/download if they need any additional support or clarification about what information is needed.  

As I am in my second year of university, when I get my finance is different from my first year but they are usually around the same time. I get my first instalment of student finance in September (around the 15th/16th mark) just in time before I start classes (and freshers!). My second instalment usually drops right after Christmas time when school starts back again (mine came on the 6th of January 2020). My final instalment usually comes in after Easter just in time for the end of the academic year for me.

Like I said, the website is very useful and full of information if you need it but do not be afraid to give them a call for anything at all. I rang when I didn’t understand what I needed to do when applying for my second year student finance and the person on the phone was very calm and talked me through what I needed to do.

I hope that you found this useful and are excited to start your university journey, Lauren Fitzsimons.

“There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.”

-Beverly Sills-

Staying Mentally Healthy!

Hey everyone! I hope you are all well during this time. As we go through this difficult period in the UK and all over the world, I want to share some advice that I have learnt over the years about staying mentally healthy at university and at home from university.

I know I may sound like a broken record at this stage but by biggest piece of advice for staying mentally healthy is to GO OUTSIDE! Having a separation from the place you feel stressed or overwhelmed is so important for your well-being.

My house-mates know that when I say I am going for a walk that it is code for “time for me time,” and I let them know when I will be back and keep my phone on me at all times. I find that when I am outside, I can try and forget about how I felt within the four walls of the house and let my mind relax. Honestly, try it next time you get stressed over an assignment and come back to it with a fresher mind.

Another piece of advice that I would give you is to TALK to someone. This could be anyone from your friends, family, personal tutor or even your dog. Just as long as you are communicating your thoughts and feelings to someone who will know how to help, give advice or provide some form of comfort.

Last year when I got overwhelmed I went to talk to someone at the Catalyst help-desk and they were able to set up an appointment with a member of the team who had a chat with me and was able to set me up with an online help-course. This really helped but mostly because I had the chance to talk to someone about my feelings at the time.

I know that university can get lonely at times especially when self-isolation and social distancing is a must at the minute. Edge Hill University really helped me last year when I was feeling overwhelmed and lonely and so, do not hesitate to reach out to them and ask for help because at the end of the day, that is all we need to do to get to the next step in being mentally healthy.

look here for more information. https://www.edgehill.ac.uk/location/catalyst/

I hope that this is useful for people who may be struggling around these times. Just know that Edge Hill always has the means to help you if you reach out and ask for help, I am really glad I did.

Thanks for reading, Lauren Fitzsimons.

“The more you talk about them, the more important they will feel. The more you listen to them, the more important you will make them feel.”

Roy T. Bennett

Beat the loneliness, Edge Hill style.

Living alone for the first time, or at least away from your parents and family can feel lonely, there’s no disputing that fact. However, you don’t have to give into that feeling of loneliness at Edge Hill, since there’s literally so much to do beyond your studies. 

In a prior blog I’ve spoken a lot about coffee, probably too much, so I’ll spare you from another piece about that. Though, getting a coffee either alone as a treat or with a friend who is also on campus in order to catch up is an option to combat that lonely feeling. 

Another aspect of campus I spoke about was the Red Bar, I have now been to the Red Bar and could easily classify myself as its number one fan. Amazing food and staff make it a great experience with friends or solo. The food is super cheap but super good, I was shocked at the quality. Pizzas, Nachos, Paninis, the list goes on and on in regard to what you can get there. If you’re visiting in the evening, there is also a selection of alcohol, though perhaps save that one for when you’re there with friends, solo drinking could make you feel more lonely. 

Side stepping from activities on campus, there’s an array of things you can do at Edge Hill that requires no spending. When feeling a tad down, I’ve taken my phone, found a podcast, and just wandered into Ormskirk. A slow walk to decompress, accompanied by audio that isn’t music can be extremely relaxing or a good method to decompress. If time isn’t on your side, kill two birds with one stone and do your weekly food shop at the same time. Morrisons is a lot more tolerable when accompanied by a good podcast of your choice. The Daily is a very good podcast to listen to, 30 minutes long usually about different topics. 

There are so many other ways to combat loneliness at Edge Hill that all my future blogs could approach each subject, but I think we’d all get bored of reading that. I could go on and on but in the interest of wrapping things up, my parting statement in this blog would be to find something that makes you happy beyond your studies, and tailor it to combat that loneliness, for me it’s my Video Game consoles, for you it could be something very different. 

Alice

How to Avoid the Competitive Side of University

Hey everyone! the topic for today’s post is something that I haven’t seen much about or talked about that often and so it is why I want to talk about it today. For me, university can seem like one big academic competition within your course group or even sometimes among your peer group which can then lead to comparing your own success against someone else. Since beginning my second year of university, this has become less of a struggle because I now know what to do to try and avoid catching these feelings.

Social Media

I know that this is not news for people but as we all know social media can be detrimental to the way in which we think of ourselves. Seeing people post stories or tweet things about your course or how much work they’re doing on a Friday night can start to make you feel guilty about how much work you have been doing.

I had a professional twitter account for my course but I had to delete it because of the stress and guilt it caused me anytime I saw something relating to my course assignments or people working. Since deleting my account I am much more relaxed about my own work ethic as I am no longer comparing myself to the people I followed. I have also made sure to lessen my usage of other social media apps by deleting the apps during the week and then if I want to, re-downloading them at the weekend.

Image result for no social media

Working Alone

I have found that when I work alone on assignments I am a lot happier with the work I have done because there is no one around me to compare myself to. I can often work with some people but at times, I like my own space to work hard and concentrate on my own success.

For this, I like to use the silent study on the Catalyst building on the Edge Hill campus. I know that I mention this space quite a lot on my blogs but it just goes to show how much I love it up there. There is no way that I can get distracted as you can literally hear a pin drop and that’s why I never fail to get work done.

Surround yourself with Positivity

My best piece of advice for this topic is to do things that make you happy. This can be anything from the people in your life, hobbies that you enjoy, food (my personal favourite) or simply just getting sucked into the TikTok hole until three in the morning…

Do whatever it takes to take your mind off all the comparisons that we are finding hard to escape from these days and know that how much work you have done that day is good for YOU and should not be dampened by the feelings of not doing enough.

Image result for positivity gif

I really hope that people found this post a little helpful or if you just needed this reminder to JUST DO YOU!

Thanks for reading, Lauren x

“Have more than you show, and speak less than you know.”

-William Shakespeare-

My Assignment Writing Routine feat the Catalyst

Hey everyone, as I have a quite a few assignments due in in these last two months, I thought I would share with you the process that I go through whilst writing an assignment for my course. The catalyst building at Edge Hill University is also a big part of my assignment writing routine so I will be sharing how I use it.

Step 1 – the title

The first step in my assignment routine is reading and understanding the title of the assignment so that I know what it is that I need to do and what books I will need to read in order to make sure that I am going to be hitting all the points.

Step 2 – reading

This is the part that I find the hardest as you need to make sure that you are reading enough but not reading too much that you get overwhelmed and then confused as to what the assignment is actually about.

When I am looking for things to read, I start with books as it means I can read them in the library (as much as I can) so that I don’t have to carry them all the way back to the house and break my back! For reading, I like to go up to the silent study because I know that I won’t get distracted and get a lot of reading done.

Once I have finished reading books I move on to journal articles and online resources as I know I don’t have to physically take something out of the catalyst. I still like to do this reading in the silent study just because I tend to get distracted easily and I like keeping my house, where I relax, separate from where I work as a way to keep my stress levels down.

I use discover more and google scholar to find my articles;

https://www.edgehill.ac.uk/ls/discover-more/#gref

Step 3 – notes

Once I have read everything that I possibly could, it is time gather all those highlighted words and sentences and put them down on the one page so that they are easily accessed. Everyone is different when it comes to writing down their notes but, the way I like to do it is open a Google Docs page, write the reference (in Harvard style) for whatever book or journal I have read and then start writing my notes underneath that.

I like using google docs for this part of the assignment because I can easily attach a comment to the quote I have written down so that I can remember what I want to write about this quote or how I would incorporate it into my assignment. Google docs is also very safe to use in terms of saving your work as it does it automatically. I cannot tell you how many times I have lost internet connection or my laptop has died and I panic about losing all my work but it never has because the google docs saves it automatically.

Step 4 – Plan

After I have made sure that I have recorded all my notes on to the one document I can then start to break my assignment down into points and then add in the quotes that would be suitable for that point.

Step 5 – write!

Once I have the plan done and dusted, I feel that I am ready to start the writing process. I find that having a solid plan to base my assignment on makes this part so much easier because all I need to do is transfer the information I have on my plan into an academic piece of writing.

I hope that you enjoyed this and hopefully found it useful. I know that everyone has a different way that they like to write assignments and that is completely fine, you do you x

Thanks for reading, Lauren.

“It is nobody’s responsibility but yours to discover your assignment and to execute that very assignment.”

D.S. Mashego-