Second Year is Not So Bad
When I am very close to the end of my second year’s first semester I can’t avoid realising that it was not as bad as it sounded beforehand. Obviously, first year must have been a pretty good training for the following one.
Although, I must admit that more than once already, I have found myself in a weird frame of mind. One of those times where you really need to have some strong will to get the job done. Times where the task seems just too hard or way too complex, but, in the end, it was only fear, I guess, because eventually I managed to overcome the situation and get the job done. You do have every resource to solve all of the problems presented to you over the course of the degree, it’s just a matter of being patient (very often) and working on it until you have it done. A few weeks ago one of our lectures explained a theorem to us, and then he said something like: “- I do not expect you to understand this right now just by listening to me, you need to get your head around it, if you haven’t done it yet before the lecture, you just need to go home and read it once and again until you understand it.”
Coursework deadlines are an every week occurrence now, so, they do keep us busy. If I had only one piece of advice to give to future second year students of Computer Science/ Software Engineering it would probably be that they should get the coursework and assignments done as soon as possible. Procrastination is now, more than ever, your worst enemy.
A few weeks ago, on a cloudy Sunday, while playing a football game for ECS’s team, I broke a rib. That was about four weeks ago. I haven’t played again yet, since my doctor prohibited me from taking part until week five after the accident (which I am looking forward to). I brought this up for a reason – I discovered a couple of things thinking about this accident and its consequences. The first two weeks after the accident, I was really stressed out. Not because of the pain, because I must admit it was not too bad, but because of the lack of exercise. I do not know if this works the same for everyone, but, playing football a couple of times a week and going to the gym every now and then seems to help me focus the rest of the time and be in a healthy mood. We, as computer scientists spend a lot of time sitting down in front of a computer; and at least for me, headaches and backaches appear every once in a while. Regular exercise does make me feel much better.
The second thing I noticed is that those extra hours I gained by not doing those activities did come in very handy. So, note to myself: 1. sports are healthy and helpful (even if you are at risk of breaking a rib). 2. Do not waste your free time, organize it!
Winter has not been too bad so far. I certainly hope it stays like this, but, being realistic I know that probably in a couple of weeks time I will be freezing every morning while waiting for the U1A bus. All I know is it is worth it.
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