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As a full-time college student with a part-time job, how do you manage time productively?

I'm asking this question because generally full-time students tend to find it difficult to balance well between school and work. #college #jobs #student #time-management #productivity

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Pamela’s Answer

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Ensuring good work/life balance differs from person to person. Whether you are a student balancing a part time job, in full time employment and balancing family life and hobbies, self awareness and transparency is key. Learning to balance work and study early on will be very useful as you transition to uni or the world of work.


I'd recommend making a plan, including the time you think you will need to study and the time you will need to work in order to pay bills etc... If you are still to choose your part time job it may be an idea to consider if a holiday job over the summer is feasible, giving you the opportunity to put away some savings for term-time. But if that does not suit, it’s important that you choose a job that does not clash with your lectures and will work around your studies.


If you are currently working and looking for pointers on keeping the balance, I'd suggest making sure you know the important dates in your course calendar, such as assignment deadlines and exam dates, so that you can easily see your busy periods and plan accordingly. If you can ask your boss for a set time table or regular shifts, it would make things easier to manage your time. If you can highlight those course hotspots in advance you can plan to take time off or swap shifts with other people. Negotiations with your employer will be much more amicable if you give them advanced noticed and are honest.


Keeping a diary or planner is also a handy idea. Penciling in some "you time" or "friend time" may seem a little silly, but you can get wrapped up in all work and no play and forget that you can have fun during these times too. Just try to be as organised as you can and don't leave things to the last minute. Less work/study stress means you will enjoy your free time more.


For 6 years I balanced a part time Supermarket Team Lead position while attending university and , for me, being firm and honest with my availability really helped. Being flexible is useful to a point but you need to keep in mind that time to relax and socialise is just as important as working! You’re not a machine and it’s imperative that you look after yourself so that the other areas of your life aren’t affected. If things become a little hectic don't forget to reach out to your support group : Your family, your boss, your lecturers ; they are all there to help and will be much more likely to be understanding if you’ve told them as soon as you notice issues cropping up.


Hope that helps, good luck with your studies!

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Sonja’s Answer

I have been in a similar situation for a few years no - I work full time but I'm doing a degree part-time.


The key to effectively managing this is of course being organised by planning well ahead. Here are a few things I tend to do:




  • Decide what days will be your study days and what day(s) will be your day off. Don't be temped to use your free day to catch up on work or study; it is just as important to have down time as it is to spend time working and studying.




  • Make sure you know when your assignments are due and scope them out long before then. It means you can work on them as you are covering the material and saves time going back and revising things later.




  • If you find some material easy to cover, try and get ahead. It will be invaluable when you come across something that you find a bit more difficult.




  • Don't be too hard on yourself if you fall behind. It happens to everyone! The important thing is to keep going; whatever you do, don't fall into the trap of doing nothing because you feel too overwhelmed.




  • Do one thing at a time. I cannot stress too much how important this is. Don't try and study whilst at work, don't think about studying whilst working., It will leave you feeling stressed.




  • Remind yourself why you are doing what you are doing. It sounds cliché, but write down what your goals are, take 5 minutes every day to think about where this path is leading you. It will stop you from feeling like you are in a never ending cycle of being ridiculously busy - one day, it will be better!




I hope this helps. Good luck!

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Rachel’s Answer

<span style="background-color: transparent;">You have to set a routine for yourself and stick to it for the most part. Once you get into the groove of a routine it will be much easier for you to manage your time and have enough time for everything you need to do (including relaxing). Make yourself to-do lists on a weekly basis, use Google calendar or a planner to keep track of events, deadlines, and due dates. In addition to setting a routine and sticking to it, plan out relaxing activities into your day. Or set aside a time, after everything is done for the day, that you can have "me" time. I have also personally found it essential to not only find time for myself but also make use of that time in a way that is best for me and my holistic wellness. I have found the HeadSpace app to be an essential tool in helping me relax and generally feel more relaxed throughout the day, Guided meditation, even if you have a busy schedule, will make you feel more at ease and relaxed throughout the day as a whole (not just when you have the time to relax and focus on that "me" time).</span>

<span style="background-color: transparent;">Set a routine.Use Google Calendar.Set aside Me TimeWrite weekly to-do lists and use a planner.Find a peaceful and restful activity that will help you feel relaxed.</span>



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Ken’s Answer

Hi Rebecca!


You are asking a very important question, as you will have much unstructured time:


Here are three different viewpoints on the subject:
http://www.mycollegesuccessstory.com/academic-success-tools/college-life-balance.html
http://www.collegeconfidential.com/dean/000241/
http://www.collegeconfidential.com/dean/000241/

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Troy’s Answer

It is important to develop a routine that incorporates a work-life balance. For myself, I found it beneficial to make a plan for each day by writing down the tasks I need to complete. I also like using google calendar to stay organized and know when my shifts and classes are along with deadlines for my assignments or exams

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