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Five tips on how to balance school and all your outside extra-curricular activities in College

Finding the time to keep your GPA up while also having a life outside your studies can be hard to balance once you get to college. Hanging out with friends, joining clubs, participating in sports, or having a job may seem strenuous when you are a college student, but it is definitely possible. If you are looking to make the most of the “best years of your life,” here are a few tips to help you live college to the fullest:

(1) Planning is Key
Planning your week ahead of time will help to manage your time more wisely and avoid procrastination. Leaving your assignments for the last minute can cause unnecessary stress that can easily be avoided by giving yourself more time to finish your work.

A planner or reminder app are both great ways to organize your responsibilities and assignments for the week. I’ve found that the visual component is a helpful tool to make sure you don’t forget any commitments.

(2) Ask for help
Don’t wait until you are already behind to seek help. When you are struggling with a concept or an assignment, go to your teachers or teaching assistance for guidance. They are there to help you so take advantage of it.

Building a relationship with your teachers will not only help you succeed in the classroom, but it can also reap benefits once you have finished your academic career. Many professors have great connections in the workforce and their recommendations can help you land your dream job in the future.

(3) Study More Efficiently
Get rid of distractions. When studying or completing an assignment, make sure your phone is out of reach and the television is turned off. If you are solely focused on your work, you will get it done faster, leaving more time for leisure.

Taking diligent notes will help you remember the material and are a great resource to look back at when studying. Everyone learns differently, so take some time to explore which study techniques work best for you.

(4) Don’t Overfill your Plate
Make time for yourself. Nothing is more important than your mental health. Getting enough sleep, setting aside time to eat, and just relaxing every once in a while, are essential.

When you are being pulled in too many different directions, you cannot give your full effort to anything. Pick two to three things that you are most passionate about and give them your undivided attention. Value quality over quantity.

(5) Have a Positive Attitude
It may seem cheesy but having the right attitude goes a long way. Being excited about school and the organizations you are involved in will make it more enjoyable. Finding people within your classes and your extra curriculars that you can call friends will make your experience more fun.

Plan something to look forward to. If you know your week will be particularly tough, plan a weekend excursion to help get you through. Positive attitudes will lead to positive outcomes.

Having the perfect balance of all aspects of your busy life can be a daunting task. You may not get it right the first time. These five tips may not solve all your problems, but all I ask is that you make the effort to do what is best for you.

Sharp’s blog was part of an assignment and blog contest in the Daniels communication courses BUS3000. 

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