It’s the end of December, meaning it’s almost time to take down the holiday decorations and get back to the grind. What is your reaction when New Year’s comes around? Do you see it as a fresh start, or as just another passing year? Whether you look forward to New Year’s or would rather not be reminded that you’re another year older, for me—and I’m sure for a lot of you, too—it feels like I never had a break from the grind. With work, classes, and the holidays all demanding your attention, you’re probably feeling a little overwhelmed, as if trying to keep afloat in a sea of final papers and wrapping paper.
Getting an advanced degree is time consuming and, taking care of yourself often falls off the list of priorities. The long hours in lab, teaching, and dissertation or thesis demands leads many students to burnout. So, how can you combat graduate school burnout with so many demands on your time? Be proactive about self-care. These changes don’t have to upset your entire routine, but take time to reexamine your habits and adjust your behavior to better care for yourself. A new year is here and it’s time to think about making 2018 the year of self-care, even when—or especially when—you feel like you don’t have time for it.