Let’s be honest, after a long day of class you want nothing more than to curl up in your dorm and avoid the rest of the world. However, using this time to do homework seems…unappealing. So when a friend invites you to a party, you want to jump on the chance to have a fun night out. Just one problem: if you go, waking up for your 9am class, with enough time to do that homework, is going to be torture. There is a way, believe it or not, to balance out all these different parts of your life. Where there’s a will, there’s a way.
Limit your social events.
You don’t have to give up your social life completely, but letting it rule your schedule can lead to being overwhelmed. Try having a set day of the week that is your off day, and make sure your friends know your limited availability. It may feel like you’re blowing them off, but chances are they’re feeling just as overwhelmed as you are. You could also have one big get together once a month. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a party (though those are always fun!); you could all go see a new movie, go to dinner, study together, etc. There are plenty of easy fun things to do.
Give yourself a schedule.
This is somewhat related to limiting your social events, as it will help you prioritize. Buy a planner. Write down your schedule for each day in the planner. Next to the schedule, add your to-do list for the day, with the tasks in order of importance. That essay you have due tomorrow that you’ve been procrastinating on? Put it on top of your to-do list, where you can’t ignore it. When you cross it out, you’ll be glad you got it done. You can have fun with it-buy cute stickers for important days, or use colored pens. It is also helpful if you carry the planner with you in your backpack or purse. This way, if someone asks you to do something you don’t end up scheduling yourself to be in two places at once. Believe me, I’ve done it, and it’s a stressful situation that’s actually easily preventable.
Get enough sleep.
You know Benjamin Franklin’s saying, “Early to bed and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and rise?” Well, sleep alone won’t shower you in fortunes, but a regular sleep schedule will give you more time to find them on your own during the day. Going to bed earlier, which may be 10pm for those night owls out there, will lead to waking up earlier. This gives you more time before class to get ready, do any tidying up, and figure out what your plan is for the day. You’ll also find it easier to focus when you’re well rested. Having all of these tasks out of the way before you even go to class leaves you more free time after school ends for the day. No more falling asleep at the desk!
It’s college. It’s stressful, and hard to keep yourself from getting stressed out and overbooked. These few small things should be a great start, but don’t be afraid to explore other options and find what works the best for you. Everybody is different, and what works for one person may not work for another. Good luck!