Depression and High Ambition

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paparie
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I have a lot of ambitions for my future that I know I could achieve if it wasn't for my rather severe mental health issues. I even want to apply to Oxford this year when I'm in year 13, and I know I can get the grades to make at least applying reasonable but I'm constantly setback by my ongoing issues with depression and anxiety. As soon as I finally have the motivation to get on with my essays, not too long after I'll be struck with another bad mood that ruins my whole day. What makes it harder for myself is that I take three essay subjects that I enjoy but never have the motivation to do the work for. I've accumulated literally 12 essays that I have been set but haven't done and it sucks because I've planned all of them out and with one intensive week to myself they could be done but I never am allowed by own mind to do them. Does anyone have any tips to cope with mental health issues so I can achieve all my ambitions? It makes me feel even worse every time another essay piles up that I haven't done.
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Kerzen
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Can you ask the teachers who have set the essays to get together to formulate a reasonable timetable for the handing in of the work? It sounds to me that there are too many pieces outstanding for you to do them in a week.

I was wondering whether you had a school counsellor who could help you with this.

I honestly think that this is a moment when you need to let people help you.

It wouldn't hurt to make an appointment for a chat with your GP.

I would also recommend Childline. You can chat to them online or speak to them on the phone, whatever works best for you.

https://www.childline.org.uk/get-support/
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BohemianPhysics
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I find drowning out the negative thoughts with music is helpful. It may sound mad but giving yourself a pep talk could help (I can do this and I will do this. I am strong and capable etc.) Try to relax as much as you can before doing them and of course do the usual tips like eating and drinking well and getting enough sleep.
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Anonymous #1
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If these issues are ongoing, and have been present for a while, how are you sure you can cope with Oxford? It's a very intensive environment and not very accommodating to people with mental health issues. I agree with the other poster about negotiating your hand-in dates but maybe you should aim lower?
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paparie
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(Original post by Kerzen)
Can you ask the teachers who have set the essays to get together to formulate a reasonable timetable for the handing in of the work? It sounds to me that there are too many pieces outstanding for you to do them in a week.

I was wondering whether you had a school counsellor who could help you with this.

I honestly think that this is a moment when you need to let people help you.

It wouldn't hurt to make an appointment for a chat with your GP.

I would also recommend Childline. You can chat to them online or speak to them on the phone, whatever works best for you.

https://www.childline.org.uk/get-support/
Thanks for your advice and concern. I have reached out with my GP and my school about my issues I'm currently receiving therapy rn but unfortunately CAMHS really isn't the most helpful service so it's not been of much help. Honestly any progress I've made with my mental health is majorly of my own work. My school has been great with helping me out and that's why all of my teachers have been lenient with the fact I've missed a lot of deadlines. I think lockdown just made things worse with me with motivation and hopefully I can get some semblance of drive back in me now that I'm back at school.

You're probably right with a week being too little for all my work, I'll have to get on with it soon and hope to be done with all outstanding work by the end of Easter. As I said, I do have thorough plans for all the essays I have to do so really each one should take me 2 and a half hours tops. Just actually have to do them at this point . But yeah I might have to take you up on asking for my guidance to organise a timetable to stick to. I'm naturally a lazy person and depression hasn't really helped that lol
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paparie
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(Original post by BohemianPhysics)
I find drowning out the negative thoughts with music is helpful. It may sound mad but giving yourself a pep talk could help (I can do this and I will do this. I am strong and capable etc.) Try to relax as much as you can before doing them and of course do the usual tips like eating and drinking well and getting enough sleep.
Thank you! I'll try that out. Music is pretty uplifting
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paparie
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(Original post by Anonymous)
If these issues are ongoing, and have been present for a while, how are you sure you can cope with Oxford? It's a very intensive environment and not very accommodating to people with mental health issues. I agree with the other poster about negotiating your hand-in dates but maybe you should aim lower?
I understand what you mean and I have considered that a lot. I just thought it would be a shame if I gave up something I've been aiming for and know I could do because of mental health issues. I would like to at least try at applying to Oxford but I guess I have to get myself a bit together. My work is usually at a high standard and I usually get As and A*, I just need to actually do all the work Lockdown has put me in bad places I haven't been in for a long time, so I'm hoping without it I can back to my usual standard before.
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EconomicsStud3nt
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I use music as well. Not a high flier by any means but ambition is definitely here as well.
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cakt-us
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(Original post by paparie)
I have a lot of ambitions for my future that I know I could achieve if it wasn't for my rather severe mental health issues. I even want to apply to Oxford this year when I'm in year 13, and I know I can get the grades to make at least applying reasonable but I'm constantly setback by my ongoing issues with depression and anxiety. As soon as I finally have the motivation to get on with my essays, not too long after I'll be struck with another bad mood that ruins my whole day. What makes it harder for myself is that I take three essay subjects that I enjoy but never have the motivation to do the work for. I've accumulated literally 12 essays that I have been set but haven't done and it sucks because I've planned all of them out and with one intensive week to myself they could be done but I never am allowed by own mind to do them. Does anyone have any tips to cope with mental health issues so I can achieve all my ambitions? It makes me feel even worse every time another essay piles up that I haven't done.
I am the exact same. I'm currently in Year 12 and looking to apply to Oxford for PPE next (academic) year. I also take three essay subjects (English Literature, History, Economics (ngl though Economics doesn't really count as much as the other two), along with A-Level Maths and AS Thinking Skills.

Over lockdown in particular, my mental health really plummeted - I have suffered from depression/anxiety/PTSD since I was six as a result of a difficult home environment, and until A-Levels, I was always able to manage my time, manage the workload, etc. I feel like I don't even have that much work, and I feel sapped of motivation and energy all the time. People never realise that depression and anxiety can have a really physical effect on you - I under/overeat, I get insomnia or I sleep too much, I clench my jaw and grind my teeth at night so I wake up with headaches, I throw up when I'm really stressed, etc. People say they're willing to support you if you have mental health issues, but expect you to act as though you have none. Which is ridiculous because when I'm doing well mentally, I don't have these issues with handing in work late, being ill, etc.

I am possibly not the most helpful person in terms of advice, considering I'm currently two essays and a couple homeworks behind right now, but what I've found has helped is asking my mum to take my phone off of me so I have less opportunities to procrastinate. I take medication daily, which helps a lot, and I try to contact the school counsellor when I feel especially bad. Unfortunately the NHS is painfully slow when it comes to counselling, and the therapist I used to go to is on maternity leave for a year. Sometimes I feel suicidal but feel like it would be overdramatic to call a suicide hotline.

Anyway, I hope you're doing okay. I believe in you and honestly, if you get any opportunity where you feel okay for even an hour, use that hour to bang out an essay. I promise it will make you feel so much better and relieve some stress.
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paparie
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(Original post by cakt-us)
I am the exact same. I'm currently in Year 12 and looking to apply to Oxford for PPE next (academic) year. I also take three essay subjects (English Literature, History, Economics (ngl though Economics doesn't really count as much as the other two), along with A-Level Maths and AS Thinking Skills.

Over lockdown in particular, my mental health really plummeted - I have suffered from depression/anxiety/PTSD since I was six as a result of a difficult home environment, and until A-Levels, I was always able to manage my time, manage the workload, etc. I feel like I don't even have that much work, and I feel sapped of motivation and energy all the time. People never realise that depression and anxiety can have a really physical effect on you - I under/overeat, I get insomnia or I sleep too much, I clench my jaw and grind my teeth at night so I wake up with headaches, I throw up when I'm really stressed, etc. People say they're willing to support you if you have mental health issues, but expect you to act as though you have none. Which is ridiculous because when I'm doing well mentally, I don't have these issues with handing in work late, being ill, etc.

I am possibly not the most helpful person in terms of advice, considering I'm currently two essays and a couple homeworks behind right now, but what I've found has helped is asking my mum to take my phone off of me so I have less opportunities to procrastinate. I take medication daily, which helps a lot, and I try to contact the school counsellor when I feel especially bad. Unfortunately the NHS is painfully slow when it comes to counselling, and the therapist I used to go to is on maternity leave for a year. Sometimes I feel suicidal but feel like it would be overdramatic to call a suicide hotline.

Anyway, I hope you're doing okay. I believe in you and honestly, if you get any opportunity where you feel okay for even an hour, use that hour to bang out an essay. I promise it will make you feel so much better and relieve some stress.
Thanks! Your situation sounds exactly the same as mine, hopefully we can get through this and come out on top. We can do it!
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lauralcarr86
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(Original post by paparie)
I understand what you mean and I have considered that a lot. I just thought it would be a shame if I gave up something I've been aiming for and know I could do because of mental health issues. I would like to at least try at applying to Oxford but I guess I have to get myself a bit together. My work is usually at a high standard and I usually get As and A*, I just need to actually do all the work Lockdown has put me in bad places I haven't been in for a long time, so I'm hoping without it I can back to my usual standard before.
I’m a lot older - applying for a post grad course. But please know that mental health doesn’t have to hold you back. There are ways to manage it, and once you find your way you will absolutely smash your goals. Just be open minded to trying different ways of managing it, and be kind to yourself. Best of luck xx
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