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Depression, 'writer's block' and overwhelmed by info'

(4 Posts)
ScapeGoat Mon 31-Mar-14 17:00:00


Has anyone known ordinarily they could do an essay, yet feel depressed and almost physically unable to get on with it?

I am despairing. I feel very low (due to family circumstances)and lacking in confidence due to failing of a placement (no supervision given - social work). I have an essay (over)due and an extension. I just can't unscramble my mind or loosen my fingers to type. At the risk of sounding OTT, I feel 'paralysed' with anxiety re failing this essay. I'm a perfectionist anyway and this has just meant I work very slowly yet (confidently) get the work done.

I can't even write this properly! I suppose I need to know how to stop being so stupid and just get on with it! I am overwhelmed by the information I have for this essay and went off on a tangent for 1200 words so decided to start it again (having looked at Learning Outcomes). How do you narrow down all the info?

Apologies for the rambling...

tanyatwo Mon 31-Mar-14 23:47:28

When you look at the question and learning outcomes, write them out in questions. For example if the question was "critically discuss the influence of culture in the community" or something that sounds a bit social worky like that. Then I would ask, What is culture? What is community? What influence does culture have on a community? I would put each question in a heading and use the literature to start answering each question and then afterwards gather my findings and make an essay out of it. I hope that makes sense, it might sound like a shit idea to you. Hope not. It seems works well for me, but I do approach work in a strange way (I've been told).

A couple of weeks ago, I started my presentation without doing that and worked on it for a week . Turns out I wasn't answering the question at all (I also re-read the learning outcomes). Friday, I had to start from scratch, so I feel your pain. Believe me, you are not alone in your despair.

Fuckalella Mon 31-Mar-14 23:52:07

You aren't alone! I am very similar to you, I seem to be finding it harder lately to just settle down and get on with it; sometimes I feel so anxious about getting the work done that I can't physically do it. I also seem to work very slowly compared to everyone else, I am also a perfectionist. I have today handed in my 7500 word dissertation though so it can be done!

I am probably not the best person to be giving tips but I find it helps to get down the key points you want to make then try and explore and build on them; if you are anything like me don't scrap your original work as there is probably useful info in there. Even if you have gone off on a tangent it is showing evidence of your own ideas, which examiners always look for.

Try and eliminate all distractions; even if I've been at home on my own all day I still work best around this time of night, it seems to be easier to think.

You can do it! Good luck smile

ScapeGoat Tue 01-Apr-14 16:29:25

Thank you SO much for your kind , helpful and reassuring replies.

Tanyatwo - good idea. Will have another look at LOs

Fuckalella - we are so similar! This perfectionism thing can get ridiculous!

Thanks again smile

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