Recently, more and more students are looking for work. Someone wants to gain experience in a specialty that is very much appreciated in large companies, the other just needs money. Some students start earning money already from the first year of study, others think about work closer to graduation.
The combination of work and study brings financial rewards, contributes to the development of responsibility, independence, and creativity. It is also an ideal opportunity for professional growth. However, there are some disadvantages: an insufficient level of knowledge due to a constant lack of time and physical overloading that is harmful to health. So how to combine work and study with minimal losses?
Plan your day
First of all, determine how many hours a day you will work and study, and how long the commute will take. Then you need to add 8 hours for sleep and allocate time for food and household needs. If the amount exceeds 24 hours, you will have to change the work schedule or reduce the time of the study, for example, to study on weekends, and not on weekdays.
Then create an average plan for the day:
- First, write down the most important things that are tied to a specific time (study, work, etc.).
- Next, arrange tasks according to their importance and select those that can be postponed to a later date.
When planning your day, leave a certain amount of free time, as if unforeseen situations happen, the entire schedule may be violated.
Prioritize both your work responsibilities and homework assignments. Do not put off the most important tasks that will bring the greatest results and semester works that are needed to complete the course.
One of the approaches is to set deadlines and do everything possible to keep them. Then combine the priority lists and determine the time required to complete each work.
You can make your planning more efficient with the use of various online task management tools. A carefully drawn up plan creates a feeling of confidence and provides better control of the situation.
Do not leave loose ends
It is a very bad habit to put off homework for later. The more assignments you accumulate, the more difficult it will be to motivate yourself to study. Use the principle of long-term memorization. You should not hope that on the last night before the exam you will learn everything that was supposed to be studied during the semester. Every day, at least a little time should be devoted to studying a part of the necessary material, even if you think you still have plenty of time ahead. To complement your studies, you may find an online course on an educational platform such as Udemy or Skillshare, which you can take at any time.
Handle your free time wisely
Many students overestimate their ability to organize themselves. In order to understand how much time you are literally wasting, write down all your actions for three days. After it, analyze the list and put together all the minutes that went nowhere while you chatted on Facebook, wandered around the house, lay idle hugging your cat, or were just looking out the window. If these are your daily habits, do not give them up abruptly. In the beginning, it will be enough to cut the time you spend on each of these activities by half.
Optimize your essential household chores as well. Set a goal, track and analyze your time and you will be impressed by how your productivity boosts.
Do not overuse your body reserves
The resources of our body are not limitless, therefore, sooner or later, you will feel the overstraining. It is very important to make a regime of work and rest. Time for relaxation is a must. Take into account a few very important points:
- Take time to exercise during the day.
- Go to bed and wake up at the same time.
- Every day spend at least 30 minutes walking in the fresh air.
Let the teachers know that you are working
Some students make the mistake of not attending classes in order to work – without informing their instructor. Such a careless attitude will most likely lead to a conflict. To avoid this, it is better to talk to the teacher at the beginning of the semester, explain the situation, and how you can perform all the assignments. Most of the time, the teacher will be ready for a compromise. The main thing is to keep the promise, because you may not be given a second chance.
Make an agreement with your employer
Employers also realize that students need time to study. Speak openly about your needs to avoid misunderstandings. Responsible companies are already creating comfortable conditions for working students. You can achieve the following trade-offs with the employer:
- Flexible working hours, then you can arrange for this time to be before or after study.
- Work remotely from home.
- Work part-time, coming to work just a few days a week.
Avoid perfectionism when combining work and studying
If you started working while studying, you should be aware that this is already a challenge. Trying to be the best student in the group, an ideal employee, a public activist, run a half marathon, and win a chess tournament is the shortest way to emotional burnout. Set priorities and remember the principle of Pareto, according to which 20% of effort brings 80% of the result.
Students combining work and study encounter a lot of difficulties. But they gain valuable experience. Such skills like time management and determination are useful not only for current activities but also for building a career in the near future. And finally, sociologists believe the students who combine work with study manage to achieve higher academic performance than their non-working classmates.
Always remember there is no success without risk and hard work. But the world is open to your talents. Gain the courage to realize your dreams, set goals, and achieve them. When you plan and act, obstacles disappear by themselves.