In many cases, there are two major reasons why high school students choose to go away to college. One, of course, is for the degree. The other is for the experiences. College is said by many to be "the best four years of your life" and they aren't wrong. For most young people, it's the first time they are living alone while meeting tons of new friends from all walks of life. Whether this means attending clubs and activities on campus, joining a fraternity or sorority, or simply hanging out with friends in your dorm room, there are opportunities to be social at every corner you turn. Unfortunately, some students may have a hard time balancing this social life with the academic demands that come with being a college student. But, there are some tips to help you effectively manage it all.
Create a Schedule for Yourself
If you're wondering how to balance school and personal life while you're in college, it all starts with creating a schedule for yourself. Once you get into the swing of your classes, you can have a better idea of which nights you are free, which mornings you can sleep in late, and which days you really need to focus on attending class, studying and doing your homework. On the days you have a little more flexibility, you can make time to socializing. Many college students keep a whiteboard calendar in their room or an agenda book, to keep track of their classes, study schedule and plans with friends. By having a visual of your schedule, you can easily see when you're able to say "yes" to plans or take a raincheck.
Allow Yourself to Take Breaks
Some students may have no problem prioritizing school work and putting social life second. But, there's no need to put so much pressure on yourself. While studying and doing homework is important, it's just as important to make time for your social life. Learning how to manage studies and a social life can be difficult for sure, but you're not the only one that will be struggling that. So, do yourself a favor and allow yourself to take breaks from studying every once in a while. Talk to your roommate, hang out with people in your dorm or make a plan to meet a friend at the dining hall for lunch. After all, you have to eat anyway, right?
Restrict Yourself From Going Out Some Nights
On the other hand, for many students, it can be tempting to want to go out and socialize nearly every night of the week when you're in college. When there are social events on campus, you may have somewhat of a fear of missing out if you don't join in on the fun. Finding solutions to figure out how to balance school and your personal life starts with having to restrict yourself from going out from time to time. This is especially true if you're currently working on a big assignment or studying for a test. Give yourself a few nights during the week and one day on the weekend where you prioritize your studies over everything else, even when your friends come calling. This is all about learning when to say "no."
Join or Create a Study Group
If you're struggling to balance your school life and your social life, the best secret to a work life balance for college students is to find a way to combine your school demands and social demands together. One way to do this is by forming a study group where you can hang out with friends and study together. This may not be ideal for everyone, but it's a good way to not miss out on any part of the college experience. You can take breaks during the study session to chat and have a snack, and spend the rest of the time focusing on your work.
Hana LaRock is a freelance content writer from New York, currently living in Mexico. She has spent the last 5 years traveling the world and living abroad and has lived in South Korea and Israel. Before becoming a writer, Hana worked as a teacher for several years in the U.S. and around the world. She has her teaching certification in Elementary Education and Special Education, as well as a TESOL certification. Hana spent a semester studying abroad at Tel Aviv University during her undergraduate years at the University of Hartford. She hopes to use her experience to help inform others. Please visit her website, www.hanalarockwriting.com, to learn more.