Massey University CareerplaNZ

Career and student learning issues brought to you by Massey University’s Careers Service – New Zealand

Ways of wellness…

Posted by John Ross on February 26, 2009

Tertiary study brings challenges for many – not least, managing study and life. Here my colleague Karilyn Andrew, Massey University’s Wellbeing Co-ordinator, outlines some of these challenges and offers tips to help along the way.


Managing pressure


There are times during the term when most people feel pressured.  Recognise that this is a common experience – you are not the only one.


  • Plan ahead – know when deadlines are, break things down into steps and allow yourself enough time to get the work done.
  • Keep things in perspective.
  • Separate others’ expectations from your own – be clear about what you know you need to do for you.
  • Use pressure to positively motivate yourself and praise, reward or treat yourself when you achieve your goals.
  • Allow time for relaxation and other activities that keep you healthy and well.

Just ask


Sometimes when we face new experiences and knowledge we can waste loads of time worrying about things we don’t understand or don’t know.  Don’t be afraid to ask – you can save yourself and lot of time, energy and worry by finding out or asking. 


Balancing study and life


It helps to be clear with yourself when you are, and when you are not studying.  If you don’t do this, you might find yourself thinking of all the fun things you’re not doing while you are trying to study.  You might also find it hard to enjoy leisure time and socialising as you’re worrying about any work that’s outstanding.  Even worse, you might end up not even allowing yourself time for leisure and fun, which doesn’t make you more productive – you just end up stressed and burnt out.  Take time for leisure, physical and social activity and time to relax.


Know yourself and what you can handle


University can be a time when you experiment and find ways of living that suit you.  Don’t be pressured by others into doing things that you do not want to do, that don’t feel right, or that you aren’t ready to tackle yet.  Allow yourself to work within what you feel able to do and be yourself. 





A common problem that can affect students is the tendency to put things off until the last moment – or to beyond the last moment.  Below are some signs of procrastination to look out for this year, or you may recognise these habits from the past.


Difficulty making a start on a piece of work or revision

  • Do you find yourself constant putting back your starting time and never actually getting going?
  • Are you often waiting for the “right moment” to start or for inspiration to strike you?

Craving diversion

  • Does the need to tidy your room, do the shopping, phone home and so on become irresistible whenever you contemplate getting down to work?
  • Are you easily distracted from your work by friends and social opportunities?

 Ineffective working


  • Do you spend time in the library but end up with little to show for it?
  • Do you stare at a blank computer screen or piece of paper rather than being able to start writing?

 Last minute rushing


·        Is all your work finally done at a breakneck speed the night before the final deadline or the exam?

·        Do you often think you have not left yourself time to do the work justice?


 Missed deadlines


  • Do you feel you are always requesting extensions and making excuses?
  • Are you losing marks on work because it is late? Do you find it hard to get to classes?

 Nagging guilt


·        Is your social and relaxation time spoilt by the continual feeling that you ought to be working?

·        Do you often feel you have got a lower grade than you should have achieved?


 Disappointment and self-reproach


  • Do you feel you are letting yourself down by putting things off?
  • Do you think of yourself as lazy and as a poor student?
  • Do you compare yourself unfavourably with others because of your procrastinating?

 If you answered yes to many of these questions, you may well have developed the habit of putting things off, or procrastination.  


If you would like to explore tips and strategies to deal with procrastination, and are a student at Massey’s Manawatu campus, or are a Massey extramural student in or around Palmerston North, don’t put off attending the WOW workshop on Thursday March 12th  (see below). 


There will also be a group being run over four weeks by the Student Counselling and Careers Service on April 1st, 8th, 29, and May 6th.


If you are interested in attending this group contact the Student Counselling Service on 06 350 5935.



Wellness on Massey’s Manawatu campus this week …


WOW Workshop – Procrastination – Thursday March 12h, 12-12.50pm


Student Life Seminar Room (Next to SS Lecture Block)

Explore tips and strategies for dealing with ‘procrastination’. 

Register online at or phone 06 350 5935


Women’s Health Clinic: Every Wednesday morning


Where: Massey Medical Centre, Level 1, Registry building.


Call to make an appointment (06 350 5533).


The Women’s Health Clinic is for contraception concerns, sexual health questions, pregnancy, and fertility issues


Wellness Walkers – Thursday 12th March


Come and join this new walking group starting today. This is an easy level 30minute walk.  Where? Meeting outside main entrance to registry building at midday. 



Wellness on Massey’s Manawatu campus COMING UP NEXT WEEK …


  • Wellness Walkers – Tuesday 17th March, Thursday 19th March. Come and join the walking group.   Leaving from outside main entrance to registry building just after midday.
  • WOW Workshop – Getting Great Sleep – Thursday 19th March. Strategies to improve the quality of sleep and address common sleep problems.  Register by phoning 350 5935 or online at 

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