You might wonder if there might be a manual or a set of instructions geared toward successfully balancing your college life. Maybe there are underlining rules to being a full-time student, having a job and/or internship at the same time, and still managing to be socially involved, aware and alert.
There kind of is, but it’s learned through experience. Sometimes you have to take one for the team, even when you’re the only one on it and sacrifice the things you thought you needed.
Eighteen units, a part time job, an internship and the art of being human is possible if you do it right and manage your time accordingly. Trust me I know. I’m doing it now.
Here’s six steps how:
Step 1: Invest in a planner or digital organizer in an effort to stay on top of anything and everything. The art of writing something down and checking it off really works and helps. Visually connecting events, things to do and deadlines to a date allows you to spread things out and really manage your time, especially for the procrastinators out there. Some of your best work will be produced under pressure, but great work takes time.
Step 2: Pick and choose your battles wisely, and in this case, I mean dedicating more time to where it’s needed and less time to where it’s not. This applies to your school life, job, relationships, friendship and more. The thing about time is it always seems so limited, so it’s necessary to invest in aspects and parts of our life that need the most growth and work.
Step 3: Exercise your right and embrace the art of saying “no.” You can’t please everyone and you can’t be everywhere at once. Take the loss and miss out on that mixer, party and event because there will always be more. Don’t commit to those extra hours at work when you know you have sleep and homework to catch up on. Don’t schedule multiple things in one day like you’re some sort of super human that doesn’t need downtime to collect not only your thoughts, but your life.
Step 4: Not at all contradicting step three, but being social and maintaining friendships and relations are essential. Don’t let your work and school work consume you to the point where it’s starting to affect your relationships. Sometimes, you have to put the book down, set the paper aside and have fun. College is supposed to be one of the most significant times of your life, and you don’t want to miss out on those life-changing experiences and memories. Skipping a class and missing a little assignment never hurt anyone, and if you can afford to do it, then do it, because as important as school is, we tend to take it too seriously sometimes.
Step 5: Naps are your best friend, and if you ever took them for granted in the past, you won’t anymore. The value of sleep is priceless, and if you have some free time with absolutely nothing to do, take a nap. You’ll feel rejuvenated and get that extra boost of energy.
Step 6: Find a hobby or habit that releases your stress. Pray, if that’s what gets you through the day. Bake, if that puts you in your happy place. Go shopping, if that’s the cure to your stress. Write, if that eases your mind, and have a glass of wine, if that soothes your soul (age restrictions may apply). Find something that takes your mind off whatever stress may be clogging your mind, body and soul.
Life is all about finding a balance and figuring out what does and doesn’t work, and once you find that balance, transitioning through the day gets easier with time.