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Tufted Titmouse
Tufted Titmouse

Joined: 27 Jul 2015
Age: 23
Posts: 30
Location: Burlington, Ontario, Canada

07 Mar 2016, 9:20 am

Okay, so I'm very interested in environmental issues including conservation, endangered species, sustainable energy, and the effects of the fossil fuel industry on weather patterns, habitats and other systems. Since I didn't take any physics in high school I decided to take an environmental studies course rather than environmental science one, especially since I'm more interested in finding ways to solve problems than in researching the problems themselves. In any case the closest environmental studies course to me is at York University in Toronto, 50 km away. Okay, so I'll have to live on residence if I want to go there. I'm not ready for that yet, so I'll take a prep course at Sheridan College which is much closer. First semester went well, and now I'm halfway through second semester.

My grades are generally good - mostly 70s and 80s with a few 90s. I'm okay with lectures, homework, and tests, but what really gets to me is the papers. I'll think about something to use as a supporting argument for my thesis, look it up, and realize that no one in the history of the planet has ever considered writing about it. Is the concept of workplace barriers for the handicapped or disabled really such an alien notion to every jornal in the world? It really gets ridiculous, too - hours of searching yielding absolutely no usable sources.

The problem isn't my grades. It's my stress level. And it's highest around the papers. I feel like I could get it done if there wasn't a freaking time limit to get it done in, or if the supporting arguments for your thesis didn't have to be so infuriatingly specific. But as it is I sometimes come close to my breaking point when trying to write a paper. I can't put myself through this for six years (two years at Sheridan and four years at York). I'd lose my mind. But I feel like I don't have any alternative. I would hate any of the jobs that I can get with a high school diploma (and I've done hours of research into it).

Basically I feel like the world is saying "Hey, if you drag yourself through this iron thornbush of college/university, we'll give you a free cookie. But if you're not willing to get yourself cut, then you can have this plate of horse intestines for dinner." Basically my stress level is through the roof and I have no idea what to do about it...I've thought about online education, but I feel like online education and social success are in complete opposite directions.

Like I said, I don't know what to do, what to plan for, how to manage my stress, what my best options are...Please help!


Joined: 2 Mar 2015
Gender: Female
Posts: 2,573

07 Mar 2016, 11:46 am

Okay, I know what you're saying. That same thing happened to me when I started my thesis.

Number one, you need to find an idea that you believe in so you can write about it.

Number two, your committee members need to be people that you like. They do not have to be experts in your subject. They HAVE to be people you LIKE who are NICE to you.

Number three, you need to schedule your classes so that you always only have one hard class at a time. Make the others all easy classes. If they try to make you take two hard ones at once, see which one will come around in a year or two and skip that one for now.

Number four, get enough rest, eat, do leisure activities, etc. Have a life. If a bus hit you tomorrow, make sure the life you're living in school is what you want to do.

Oh and I realize I wrote this for graduate study, but it would work too for undergraduate study. Except please consider skipping a thesis if you're an undergraduate student. It's easier to just take a couple extra classes. I seriously took some classes in theater where all I did was watch movies. In another class I made Star Trek props. Do that instead of drive yourself crazy writing something no one will ever read.