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School-Life Balance: The College Student’s Dilemma

March 28, 2012

by Maha Khmur, myEdu

One of the most important skills a college student can learn is how to balance school with the many other demands of life.  Doing well in school should be at the top of the priority list, but most students are also committed to student organizations, internships, part-time jobs and so much more. Students need to have a social life, too, making it difficult to balance it all. While it is tough to maintain a good balance, it can definitely be achieved through a little planning.

Stay Organized
Staying organized goes a long way, and is the key to successfully balancing all of your activities. At the beginning of each week, plan out your schedule for the coming week including any exams, homework assignments, student org meetings and work hours.  Having a planner or calendar handy will allow you to keep track of everything you have going on—using a calendar that’s attached to your email or one that’s available on your mobile phone will be the most convenient and accessible option. Not only will you be up to speed on all obligations, but you’ll also avoid over-scheduling.  Don’t forget to also schedule blocks of time for things like studying. Doing so will help ensure you prioritize your time and will help determine how much time you have for friends and fun throughout the week.

Be Well-rounded
You have to remind yourself that everything you are doing now will be setting you up for the rest of your life. Doing well in school is very important for securing a job after graduation, but many other aspects of your life are equally important.  Potential employers will be impressed by your ability to do well in school while being active and involved on campus. Along with school and campus involvement, having a good social life will help you develop a lot of real world social skills—skills that will definitely benefit you in the future.

Handle the Stress
When you have so much on your plate, stress is inevitable. You wouldn’t be a typical student if you didn’t get stressed out every once in a while. What matters most is how you choose to handle that stress. In times of high anxiety, consider taking a break and doing something fun that will help you unwind –something as simple as reading a few chapters of a book, watching a movie, or going to dinner with some friends. A short break will steady you and leave you relaxed and ready to tackle your next obligation.

Balancing school and social activities is always possible with the help of a little bit of planning, and the reminder that, in the end, all of your hard work will pay off!

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