Tips on how to balance school and work life

Work doesn’t have to be stressful if you follow this advice

So, you want to live in an apartment… First question: how will you pay the rent?

It is indeed possible to be a college student and earn money at the same time. Here are some tips on how to balance your work and school life.

1. Choose your job wisely. Try to find a part-time job that is flexible with hours. That way, if you decide you need a day off, you can just let them know at least a week in advance. I recommend finding a job where you’ll work 20 hours a week or less, to give you time for everything else in your life. Find a job that is close to campus, so you don’t spend a lot of time getting to and from the job, and you don’t spend as much money on gas. Pick a job where you will not have to work a night shift, so you can get at least seven hours of uninterrupted sleep. This will greatly improve your overall functionality.

2. Establish a routine. If you have to get up early, say at 7 a.m., to get to your job on time, then get up at 7 a.m. every day. Your body and mind will get used to the routine, so you don’t have to go to work tired and unfocused. Eat a healthy breakfast before going to work to give you energy until your lunch break. After work, leave some time to relax before diving into school work. Take a shower, take a nap, or eat a snack so that later in the day, you can tackle all of your homework.

3. Positive attitude. It can be easy to slip into an irritable mood when thinking about work or while at work. You can think, “Ugggh, I don’t want to go to work,” or “I really wish I wasn’t at work right now.” Yet if you retain a positive attitude surrounding work, you will realize that going to work really isn’t that bad, and might even find joy in your work. Just get up and do it without overthinking it. If you don’t have time to go to the gym, but you have to stand a lot at your job, think of it as exercise that’s healthy for your body. You can also remind yourself that the job is temporary, and you are going to college in the hope that you will find a career that will be more fulfilling. Befriending your co-workers and perhaps going out to coffee with them can also help make your work a more positive experience.

4. Know your priorities. Showing up to work is your main priority, since that is how you will earn money. Spending time on homework and studying is your second priority, since you are paying to go to school, so you might as well get the most out of it. However, if your work hours seem to be a into your homework time, consider talking with your boss about reducing your hours. Most bosses understand that college students also have to go to class and they will gladly accommodate for you if you have proven to be a loyal worker.

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