The Trimester – A sort of post-mortem

So this isn’t quite a post-mortem but definitely a brief reflection on this trimester and why I am currently writing blogs for marks even though the trimester has finished for me. Unfortunately, as much as I would like to be able to shift the blame, this situation is my fault.

For those who don’t know, the primary way to get credit for the work we have done is to write blogs demonstrating your learning. From day one this was made exceptionally clear although I for whatever reason neglected to take in this warning and ended up not task reporting or writing blogs for approximately 6 of the 13 weeks in this trimester. I know, bad move but it is what I did regardless. I found that trying to articulate my learning and what I had done was something I struggled with, particularly in blog format and so I regrettably put it off for as long as I could.

By doing this I had no immediate negative effects occur and therefor no real stress started to build up (From the lack of blogging anyway). As anyone who follows my blog would have noticed, there has been a sudden influx of blogs over the last couple of days. This is because of two main reasons. The first and most important reason is that I avoided writing blogs for as long as I did, however, all this served to do was squeeze writing them into a smaller time frame.

The second reason that almost all of the blogs has been in the last couple of days is because of my work and family commitments. Unfortunately though, as much as I would love to, placing a huge amount of blame on these commitments is something I find that I cannot do. These commitments only became the problem that they are because I left writing these blogs for so long. It is true that I work at least 8 hours a day for 3 days a week through the trimester and that doing so makes returning home to then write blogs for uni a challenge. If, however, I had have spent just an hour or two on those days writing blogs about the work I had done then I am sure that the situation I am in wouldn’t be the case.

The impact of the work and family commitments only heighten when uni ends for the trimester as I start working full time, especially with Christmas being the most busy time of the year. Anyone watching closely enough would likely have noticed that Wednesday night was the start of the influx of blogs, this is because Wednesday was the last day of work until holidays started. Due to no longer having to get up early and having more free time on Thursday, I managed to get a significant chunk of blogs done. This only made me wish that I had started earlier as once I had written a few blogs I had found that writing them became easier and easier with each blog.

There was also a third reason that blogging had an influx so late as opposed to starting early. This reason was not as strong a reason as the other two for the late start but if I had have been without could possibly have reduced stress and enabled me to start earlier. This reason is that I struggle to ask for help when I need it (ahhh I know, self reflection). Unfortunately this is something that I find myself struggling with often and very commonly causes me to have problems in the future. I feel as though had I have asked for help it would have been very possible that my facilitators for this trimester would have been able to help me find a system that works for me to get the required work done.

Struggling to ask for help when I need it is a weak area for me that I will have to address as soon as possible. For me as a games developer I will likely find myself working in a team environment very often. If when in industry I am still struggling to ask for help when necessary then I feel as though it will cause a large number of problems. An example might be when working in industry with a team and an upcoming deadline that I won’t be able to make it to  appears. In a scenario like this the obvious way to solve the problem is to communicate with the team and ask for the necessary help or meeting the deadline will become either extremely stressful or outright impossible.

The kind of mentality that stops me from asking for help is likely a combination of pride and something dangerously close to silo mentality. In order to prevent myself from getting into a situation like this again I need to work on communicating when I need help and increasing my sense of urgency earlier on in a project.


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