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Tips to manage your everyday responsibilities

February 26, 2020

Being a full time student with three jobs can be stressful. On top of working and studying, I have other responsibilities. I also enjoy spending time with my family and friends, and I love sleeping! As you can imagine, I’m a fairly busy person. After years of experience juggling the responsibilities in my daily life, I have finally mastered the art of time management. Beyond making a to do list or downloading a scheduling app on my phone, here are some tips to help manage your everyday activities: 

Prioritize your activities

Sometimes we have to juggle multiple things at once. At the least, we as students all have to attend class and do homework. Considering my student responsibilities, employee duties, and leisure time, I often have to determine what’s most important. Prioritizing what’s important has helped me focus on certain tasks, and helps me stress over the more important things rather than the little things. I also try not to put a bunch of high priority tasks together on the same day. From most to least important, I typically prioritize work, then school, then sleep, then leisure. 

Consider travel time

Unfortunately for me, a lot of the things I have to do are in many different locations. While I’ve been lucky enough to have a job on campus through the University Works program, I often have other commitments elsewhere or on the opposite campus location. Considering travel time when making my schedule has been crucial to allowing me to hold so many responsibilities. I account for the weather, traffic, and other delays when planning travel time. Doing this allows me to arrive on time, and not stress about rushing from place to place. I often overcompensate for travel time, which is definitely better than under compensating and being late. 

Plan leisure/free time

This is my favourite tip on this list. My favourite leisure activities are hanging out with friends and playing hockey. As an extrovert, I need my daily dose of socializing, to say the least. Planning leisure time throughout my week is my favourite thing to do. Having a weeknight intramural hockey game gives me a little break throughout the week, while weekend parties with friends reward me for getting through the week. Everyone deserves some downtime for their own personal pleasure. Don’t forget to include free time in your daily lives. 

Leave room for extras/appointments

We all have last minute things that pop up in our lives. A last-minute appointment, a surprise family dinner, or an emergency study group can totally throw off your whole day. When I’m planning out my week, I often try to leave part of the evening or morning open. I usually hold it for miscellaneous responsibilities, but I can use this extra time for homework or leisure if needed. (Typically this is where I catch up on some Netflix, shhhhh). 

Don’t overwork yourself

This is an enormous piece of planning your everyday life! DO. NOT. OVER. WORK. YOURSELF. I can not stress this enough. I totally understand that as students, we have a lot of things to do, places to be, and people to see. But as OLG once said, “know your limit, play within it”. It is not worth overworking yourself. I don’t overwork myself as I make sure I only work 17 hours a week between all three jobs. Could I do more? Probably, yes. But on top of attending lectures, doing homework, and having a social life, I do not want to overload myself. 

Be realistic

You know yourself better than anyone else. You know what time is your most productive time of day. You know whether you are an early riser or a night owl. You know how much sleep you need. You know if you tend to be early, late, or right on time for events. Take all these things into consideration and be realistic with them! I know I need at least 8 hours of actual sleep, so I make sure this happens. On Thursday nights when I have hockey past late at night, I make sure I don’t have anything until class at 11 a.m. on Friday mornings. 

I hope this list will help you organize your everyday life and that your semester seems a little more stress-free!