0

The Start Of Revision

Hey guys!

This post is just one big ramble/rant about what my first step for revising for my final exams is going to be. Consider yourself warned!


 

As some of you may or may not know, I’m a student studying in her second year of a degree in Astrophysics.

I thought I’d come on here and write about how I plan to begin my revision for my end of year exams. I think sometimes taking the first step is the most difficult, so I want to make sure I have everything in order for when the time comes. Unfortunately, I won’t have much time to revise because the entirety of second year for me has been riddled with bad mental health spells and tons of coursework .

As an example, between the start of last Tuesday and the end of this Thursday we will have had 1 class test to revise for and 5 coursework deadlines (a class test in Optics along with four weeks of lecture summaries to hand in, a Differential Equations assignment to hand in, 10 hours of CV enhancement to complete along with an updated CV to hand in, a Nuclear Physics assignment along with a Quantum Mechanics assignment along with like 4 pieces of Python code to hand in and an observatory log book along with an observatory report to hand in).

So, as you can see, even within those pieces of coursework there are usually multiple components, so in that space of 9 days I will have completed 10 different components of coursework.

Which is difficult for most courses but let me tell you, Astrophysics is no joke.

Anyway, so I won’t have had any time to revise for the finals until I’ve handed in my last piece of coursework which likely won’t be until the deadline (Thursday).

I think the first step I’m going to take once I’m in my exam revision period is, before anything else, to give myself some self-care. I can hear some of you being all like “NO, DON’T WASTE YOUR TIME ON THAT WHEN YOU HAVE SO LITTLE TIME AS IT IS!”

Well I’m about to change your mind!

You see, with my crappy mental health and insane amounts of coursework, I haven’t even actually left the house since that class test last Tuesday – not even to go to my local supermarket (which is a 2 minute walk from my flat!) I haven’t been taking care of myself at all, and with my partner being in the same situation as me (not the best mental health and extremely busy with work) even the everyday things have really been swept to the side.

I will still be super busy with revision once I’ve finished with the coursework (as in, now I’m completing around 1.5ish percent of my overall grade in coursework per day, and it will be around the same  during the revision period in terms of what the final exams are worth vs the days I have to revise for them). However, I still really think this is the most important first step.

I just need to really quickly take a bath, y’know? I need to do the laundry. I need to tidy up. I need to take bags of clothes to the charity shop. I need to load the dishwasher. I need to leash train my kitten. I need to entertain my kitten. I need to create a revision plan. I need to take that VARK test and work out HOW I’m going to revise. I need to get my weight back down to what’s healthy for me. I need to stock the fridge with healthy food. I need to do a BIT of cleaning.

I don’t want to go nuts, but honestly, it really needs at least a bit of work because it’s like a mad house in here, and I have no idea how I could reasonably begin to revise without taking care of myself, my partner, my flat and my kitten in these ways first. I would just feel far too anxious and wouldn’t be able to leave the flat to go to the library to study anyway because I’d feel gross and wouldn’t want to leave the flat messy or leave my kitten needing attention, ugh.

It’s very stressful and really does need to be done, and I won’t be able to do it before then because I have 2 pieces of coursework to begin and complete within the next 2 days so I can’t really be thinking about revision before the 11th April, and only at that time onwards can I really revise…

So, hopefully you all agree with me now that this is the first thing I need to do once the revision period begins. I know logically it seems like the best thing to do would be to just fit in as much revision as possible considering how little time I have to study for these exams (one of my single semester modules contains 2 subjects (Quantum Mechanics and Nuclear Physics), and I only have 3 days to revise for each of those subjects), and I do see how this would ordinarily be the right thing to do. I just know that realistically, if I were to do that, I’d actually get less work done overall because I’d be super unfocussed.

I guess I could see that preparation as revision in itself? I mean, it isn’t REALLY, but then it sort of is because revision is technically anything that will bring your grade up in the exam right? All of this preparation will definitely ease my mind and make me far more comfortable which I think will definitely cause me to have a better grade in the exams!

I’ll just spend from whenever I give in my final piece of coursework until Friday for this preparation, so less than a day, which is enough time to make a real difference in creating a good, calm, happy and healthy brain environment for me to revise and not so much time that it actually does more bad than good. A good sweet spot.

So I have the first day of revision planned – I don’t really know what I’m going to be doing the day after but I guess that’s what the planning day is for.

Storm

2

Life Update :D

Hey guys, I know I’ve been blogging a lot less lately, so I thought a life update would help catch everyone up on what’s been going on!


  1. My partner’s mother got married a couple of weeks ago! It was such a lovely wedding in a beautiful hotel in Richmond (south west London.)
  2. My holidays finally ended and University has begun for me! This is the main reason I have been blogging a lot less lately. Successfully studying a degree in Astrophysics when you’re not very good at maths or physics is pretty difficult, and takes up a lot of your time. So far it is going okay and I’m not TOO far behind in my modules, although I could definitely be doing better than I am. I’m positive that it will all be fine provided that I get all my assignments done on time etc.
  3. I turned 24 on the 17th October! I honestly don’t remember my birthday extremely well – me and my partner decided to just stay in and eat some Chinese takeaway, so it was all pretty relaxed. We weren’t both home from Uni / work until around 8pm, so the evening didn’t last too long. I did receive some lovely gifts though – including some amazing Bose 35-II noise cancelling headphones! Perfect for those days when you REALLY need to focus. I always seem to zone in on little irritating sounds going on around me when it’s least convenient, so these are perfect!
  4. I think I only mentioned it briefly in one of my blog posts, but me and my partner went to Mallorca for 12 nights back in late August / early September! It was absolutely amazing and is the longest we’ve been abroad together to this date. It begun to feel like a second home and honestly, I just want to go back!
  5. I’ve been a lot less enthusiastic about Lush lately. I’m still working on getting through a lot of products, and whenever I do get through one I will still be writing a review on it. It just doesn’t feel AS fun anymore and although I still absolutely love the company, working on using everything up is beginning to feel more like a chore to me now. I’ve accumulated so many products that the thought of finishing them all just feels overwhelming honestly. I also discovered that the majority of my bath products (bath bombs, bubble bars and bath oils) became damp while I’ve been storing them, so a lot of them are sort of disfigured and needing to be used up ASAP. It’s just all become quite stressful honestly!
  6. As some of you may know, I’ve been struggling a bit with mental health problems for a while now (probably for as long as I can remember actually,) and I finally plucked up the courage to stop dismissing my issues and to make a trip to my GP. I booked the appointment, Richard booked the day off of work and 2 weeks later, me and my partner were sitting in a chair facing my doctor. It was an incredibly uncomfortable experience, but I’m glad I went.
    The outcome of the appointment is that my GP is now sorting out me getting on the waiting list to see a psychologist (to get a diagnosis,) and we have a form so that I can self-refer myself to talking therapy. I refused my GP’s offer to go on SSRIs – I can’t stand them! Instead, after doing some research online I came across Tryptophan (a natural amino acid your brain needs to synthesize serotonin,) which I’ve been taking 3g of daily since around a month ago. The tryptophan has definitely been working although it isn’t perfect, so I’d definitely like to look into more supplements to begin taking (vitamin D, vitamin B complex etc.) It also felt nice to just offload some of my feelings, even if the appointment was quite rushed!
  7. As most of you know, I went on my own little weight loss journey as of December last year, and finally completed it a couple of months ago. Maintaining the weight has been quite difficult actually, because I love food SO much! I’ve been doing alright though. In fact, how about I weigh myself right now to see how I’m doing?
    Okay, so my goal weight was 127.8 lbs, and that is exactly how much I weigh right now! Honestly though, I haven’t even eaten or drunk anything yet so technically, I should weigh a lb or so below that weight right now in order for my average weight to be 127.8 lbs throughout the day, but I’m doing okay!
  8. I recently reached 100 followers on WordPress! I had intended to open up a second social media account (perhaps Instagram) once I reached 100 followers on here, so that could very well be happening soon!

That’s all for now everyone! I hope you’re all doing well 🙂

See you next blog post!

– Storm

0

My work and progress.

Hello! 🙂

So, I’ve made myself a study plan and have begun studying.

Here is an outline of my study plan and how I will continue to progress:

– For Mathematics, we have covered 11 weeks of lectures, problem sheets and problem sheet solutions, so for the next couple of weeks I will study a week of lectures, problem sheets and problem sheet solutions per day. I have 11 days off left, and since I’ve already studied the first week’s work, If I start today then this method should leve a couple of days spare. The work covered up until this point in time hasn’t been difficult because of it being a Foundation Year, so I am definitely capable of studying the work at this pace.

– Mechanics:

Okay, so in Mechanics we covered 12 weeks of work, including assessments, multiple choice questions, workshop questions and lectures. I’m going to try and add in a week of mechanics work everyday along with my mathematics work. I doubt I will be able to keep up with this kind of a workload and I will more likely end up adding half of that to the amount of work I am currently doing daily, but Mechanics is much leas of a priority at the moment so this isn’t an issue.

I am super stressed about Uni. I have a math exam the first week back, we are beginning a couple of new topics meaning that it’s down to ourselves to make sure we are confident on what we have already covered in previous topics – at the same time as keeping up with current work, worried that someone might have broken into my room, worried about living entirely independently again… I have so much work to do at the moment and will have even more to do when I get back to Uni. Sometimes I wish that I could live stress free and that I could just enjoy the moment and live happily. I guess everyone handles life differently!

I love how so many different physics-related movies have been released recently. I saw ‘The Theory of Everything’ the other day. Again, it’s really encouraging and motivating to see a movie about physics – particularly one about a real life physicist with a brilliant mind.

– Storm

0

More of my Christmas break…

Hello. 🙂

So, I’m still on my Christmas break and I still haven’t begun studying.

Wow, that was a rubbish opening line. Okay, this blog post is going to be a little bit more serious than my other blog posts that I’ve written so far. Today I’m really not feeling in a very positive mood. I’ve still got a bunch of studying to get done over a short amount of time and I feel like I’ve just been wasting too much time during my break so far. I’ve loved starting my blog so it isn’t that – I’ve just spent far too much time watching random Youtube videos…

I do get anxiety quite badly so studying is actually quite a task for me, but it’s something I’m just going to have to get over because studying is the only way that I can progress in my mission to become an Astronomer.

Me and my boyfriend went to the cinema to watch the movie ‘Interstellar’ yesterday. It really was motivational for me to watch an exciting, interesting movie about space! Space is so incredible… It’s gotten to the point where I don’t even think that I could be happy unless I am studying something space related.

But yeah, to get to the point where I eventually want to be in life, my first tiny step is to go ahead and make sure I’ve learned what I’ve covered so far in my degree, so that’t exactly what I’m gunna go and do. I’ll write a post soon with updates on how my studying is going (y).

-Storm

0

My quest to a career in Astrobiology!

So some time ago I decided it was about time to sit down and make a decision on what it is that I want to do as a career. Me being somewhat of a perfectionist meant that I couldn’t bring myself to find a job/find employment in a field without having done this first. After a lot of thinking and searching, I came to a decision – Astrobiology.

This field is ideal for me. You see, unlike a lot of people, I never found an intense interest/hobby/passion when I was younger and instead found most subjects somewhat interesting. Astrobiology is a subject that involves all my academic interests – geology, ecology, biology, astronomy… For a career in Astrobiology, experts in the fields involved are preferred to individuals who are experts in Astrobiology itself, so I’ve chosen Astronomy to be my focus.

It’s taken me two years since I made that decision to get to where I am today. It hasn’t been easy – it meant having to toughen up and mature quite suddenly and I know that it’s only going to get more difficult, but… Making a life choice and following that choice independently is so freeing. 🙂

I’m currently on a foundation year of a degree in Physics & Astronomy at the University of Sussex.

I guess this post was a little introduction to my educational pursuits. 🙂

– Storm