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How to Balance Your Schedule at University

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The years you spend in university will be among the most stressful and challenging of your life. There will be many things that will require your attention, be it schoolwork, a part-time job, or new friends.

Fortunately, it will also be one of the most rewarding times of your life, and will present the perfect opportunity to learn about how to balance your schedule. Here’s how you can maintain more control over your day-to-day activities.

Set realistic goals.

For your long-term goals, determine what it is you want to achieve while in university. What academic and personal goals do you want to pursue for the next couple of years?

Maybe you want to graduate early or with honors, intern for a great company, join a fraternity or sorority, or run a marathon. With these goals in mind, every action you take will bring you closer to them.  

For your short-term goals, set a goal for the day or for the week. Keep deadlines in mind and set aside enough time to meet them to avoid cramming and procrastination.  

Manage time effectively. 

Learning to say “no” and setting boundaries can do wonders for your productivity. Got a last-minute invite to a party? Just say no and finish your paper first.

Do friends frequently barge into your Laurier off-campus housing? Set boundaries by closing your bedroom door and hanging a “do not disturb” sign so you can concentrate on your studies.

Learn to prioritize by focusing on the most important assignments first, then knock out the smaller tasks later on. 

Ask for help.

Since your family is far away from you, it’s important that you have a support system while at university. If you’re drowning in essays and homework, ask a friend to tutor you.

Talk to your professors and ask for an extension or extra credits if you’re having a hard time keeping up. Consult with an academic counselor if you’re thinking of switching majors.  

Give it up.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, now is the time to let go of things that you can do without. You may need to scale back on social activities, step down from a role in a student organization, or even drop a class. This does not mean you’re giving up; rather, you’re just unloading and embracing balance in your life. 

Get quality sleep.

Are you the type of student who studies until the break of dawn or sleeps in when there’s no class? Try to avoid falling into these habits, as they can disrupt your body’s natural clock. 

Stick to a regular sleeping schedule and you’ll wake up feeling refreshed. As an added bonus, you’ll be able to think more clearly. 

Make time for yourself.

Spend quality time away from your books. Go home for the weekend, bake a cake, grow an herb garden, or binge a show on Netflix. These activities will clear your head and make you ready for new challenges once you go back to your University of Waterloo residence. 

University life helps you become a well-rounded individual who can deal with all aspects of life. By following these steps, you can do well in your classes and still have a thriving social life.   

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