As a young professional who goes to work on weekdays and to graduate school on weekends, several friends have asked me “don’t you get tired?”
I must admit at some point it makes me feel deprived to enjoy life considering I have limited time to do so.
Sometimes I cannot go to company activities during weekends where we, employees, are supposed to participate. When some friends invite me to a get-together, I cannot come too. On Friday nights, I miss some of the hangouts.
These, all because I have a 9-hour class of 3 subjects to attend to. Not to mention on weekdays after work when I get home I still have to read some lecture notes and do my academic requirements.
It took me some time to adjust to the sleeping hours and the schedules. There were nights when I feel like my bed is already calling me, but I simply have to think that I will mess up if I give in to it.
I can remember too, there were days when while traveling on a train going to school for my first class, I suddenly fall asleep on the person’s next to me shoulder because of sleepiness after I only had 3-hour sleep.
Knowing Your Purpose
Yet, these never gave me a hint of discouragement or wanting to give up studying. I know I was doing it for my personal growth and development.
This will equip me with more knowledge and skills. I am doing this because once I get my master’s degree, in this competitive world, it will differentiate myself from the others.
Besides, this will only last for maybe 3 years or so. After that, I can have all the time in the world.
Finding Your Ways
I realized, if you really want something, you will find ways to get it no matter how difficult it is.
It is like when you were thirteen and you sneak from your parents to go to the mall and see your girlfriends and watch a movie together.
You have all the means and alibis.
It is a matter of learning how to set and balance your priorities. Knowing you must give up some pleasures to pursue a more challenging path.
If you are a working student like me or if you still plan to be one of us, I got these few tips that will hopefully help you survive the working student’s life.
Tip #1: Stop Procrastinating.
Can you imagine how much time you are wasting every time you procrastinate?
I used to be a huge procrastinator, keep asking myself for another 10 minutes rest before I do my papers. Eventually, I noticed it always ended me with nothing I have finished. Those 10 minutes became an hour and more.
My advice, stay away from your bed if you intend to do something. Remember, you have a lot to do. Make the most out of the little time you have.
Tip #2: Map Your Schedule
Having so many to accomplish, be sure to know when to start doing them and just when to finish. This will help you ensure you are not missing anything, especially deadlines.
I can easily forget, thus scheduling helped me a lot. Of course, I include in that schedule a time when I will only rest.
On the weekdays after work, I have an alternate schedule for my academic responsibilities. Mondays and Wednesdays are usually my time for myself.
Tip #3: Never Compromise Your Job
You do not have to choose between your studies and your job. But, be fully aware as well that your employer will not accept any of your substandard performance. Ergo, give your time and your best performance when you are at work.
I would really like to discourage you doing your assignments at work because they will disturb your focus. You will be likely to pay attention less to your job.
Office hours are for work, and study time is for studies!
Tip #4: Stay Healthy
Amidst your hectic schedule, you cannot afford to get sick or you will miss a lot. Get as much sleep as you can. Never skip your meals.
Scrap the alibi you are working on a research that is bound due. Your strength is your capital here, so keep it sustained.
Tip #5: Reach Out With Your Circle
Okay, since you can get too busy, you might be needing some help from your officemates to help you with a certain task. Do not hesitate to seek help if you really need to, but be sure not to abuse them.
Moreover, reaching out with your circle in school is what I would really like to give emphasis. They are a good source of information about who and how to deal with your professors. Seriously, some of them can give you tips how to get better grades with a particular prof!
Tip #6: Practice Listening and Writing
Needless to say, you have little time to study unlike if you are a full-time student. Thus, listening carefully to your professor and writing down notes during the class discussion will be an advantage to you.
Important details are always discussed in class so there is no way you will miss what will come out in the exam. Instead of spending time reading the whole chapter, you can rather spend it on something else.
Tip #7: Take it Seriously.
For now, this may be the last I could give you as an advice, “take is seriously”.
I mean SERIOUSLY.
With that, I mean always do things right and with your best at the first time. This is no joke to be working and studying at the same time. Putting a half-baked effort will undermine all you have sacrificed.