Working while you are in college is a great way to earn some money that you can use to pay towards your tuition fees. This reduces the student loan amount you need to take, which means you will graduate with lower debt as compared to students who do not work while in college.
Balancing work and school in college is not easy. It requires discipline, and time-management, but with some planning, you can do it. These tips will help you balance work and school in college.
Be Realistic About Your Capabilities
Don’t try to fill all your free hours with work in order to eliminate as much debt as possible. While it may sound doable in theory, overworking relentlessly could lead to burnout which could have serious repercussions.
Before you accept any job offer, give some thought to your capability and whether you will be able to do work those hours without compromising on your college course work. Don’t plan on working extra hours just because you see another classmate doing a great job of handling the extra hours and the school work. Everybody has different capabilities, so don’t make comparisons. You have to do what works for you.
Develop A Weekly Schedule & Stick to It
It’s all too easy to slip through the cracks when you don’t have a schedule in place. You think you’ll complete your project ‘tomorrow’ and somehow tomorrow never comes. A far better way to make sure you complete everything is by developing a weekly schedule that sets aside fixed hours for work, and for completing school assignments, while also ensuring that you have time left over to pursue your extracurricular activities.
Mark important dates and deadlines on your calendar and keep aside blocks of time to study before a test or to complete an assignment.
Learn To Manage Your Time Better
Time management is everything when you are working while in college. Avoid useless activities that such up too much of your time.. If you plan on getting on to Facebook for just a minute but somehow that minute turns into hours, you may want to consider deleting the app from your phone altogether.
Take Steps To Stress Levels In Check
Stress is inevitable when you are juggling work and school. Learning to manage these increasing stress levels is crucial. Some proven ways to manage stress levels include maintaining a healthy diet, staying physically active, getting enough sleep, and staying in touch with family and friends. If you are in a rural college, getting outdoors at least a few times a week can be a great stress-buster.
Watch For Warning Signs Of Burnout
Dozing off in class, struggling to stay focused, getting irritated easily, losing interest in your hobbies, or drinking excessive amounts of caffeine in an effort to stay awake are all warning signs that you have taken on more than you can handle. Don’t ignore the warning. Instead, reassess your schedule and your capabilities and cut back on your job commitments at least temporarily while you regroup. Manage your stress and life will be easier.
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