The Balancing Act

By: Megan

Welcome back everyone! The beginning of the school year is always hectic. As college students, we all have a lot on our plates. School, work, family, friends, extracurricular activities, planning for the future, and whatever else you can throw on there, we’re doing it all.

That leads to my story. I’ve been working here at Career and Internship Services for 2 years now. This summer, I got a job at Glensheen Mansion as a tour guide, and then I got a job in fast food. While I did cut my hours once school started up, this still amounts to at least 30 hours a week. On top of that, I’m taking upper-level required classes for my majors. Yes, majors. These are things that I’m not necessarily interested in, but need to get through my majors. Not the easiest thing. I’m also a Teaching Assistant for 2 separate classes, totaling 4 credits. As if that weren’t enough, I’m the Marketing Coordinator for QASU (Queer and Allied Student Union), and an active presenter for Peer Health Educators.

balancing act

If this sounds vaguely familiar to you, I’ve got 5 tips on how to stay on track, healthy, and keep from stressing out as much.

1) Find some time for YOU

Make sure to schedule in some time for you: time to be by yourself, wrap your head around things, and in general just take a break. Go for a run every morning, take a bath, play some video games, whatever it takes for you to reset.

2) Find time for friends/family

Saying “no” every time your friends or family want you to do something is no fun, and chances are, they’re what keep you grounded. So it’s not good to let those relationships fall to the wayside. Set some time aside and plan times to be with them ahead of time, before you’re all booked up!

3) Try saying no

You’re already committed to a lot of things, so why add more on top? If you’ve got so much going on you can barely fit it all in, how are you going to have time for more? So, as of right now, just say no. Give your all to the projects you’ve already committed to.

4) Ask For Help

If you’re getting overwhelmed, ask for help. There are others around you who would be more than willing to pitch in to help you succeed. Talk to your instructors, classmates, group members, and anybody who can help you do what you need to do. If you are more than stressed, UMD Health Services has free and confidential counseling

5) Schedule, Schedule, Schedule

It doesn’t matter if you have 10 meetings this week if you forget about half of them. Find a system that works for you, be it a planner, Google calendar, post-it notes on your walls, or using your arm as a notepad (might not be sustainable, sharpie isn’t water proof). Any way that works, just to keep you on track, and reminds you to do your assignments for everything you’re doing.

Keep reminding yourself of these tips. I know I have to continually (especially the “no” part). Good luck in the new semester!

Read Megan’s other posts

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