Produced by Sian Hedger
I present to you, the truth. We’re all guilty of doing this.
First things first: inhale, exhale (now repeat this for the rest of your university career).
Now that that’s out of the way, let’s get into the nitty gritty of organizing yourself and managing your time wisely (so you don’t become that pie chart). As a PG student, think of university as full-time work. And treat your down time and actual paid job (if you choose to have one) as life. I know you’ll question me about placing your paid job under the life category. But I need you to trust me when I say, this actually gives you a nice break from your university work. We’ll call all of this your work-life balance. The aim: actually reaching a nice balance–because everyone deserves a break after a hard day’s work–if you work hard, why not play hard.
It’s now time for the wisest piece of advice that I can give any university student (after my breathing exercise, of course):
- Print off a calendar for each semester
- Write down every single due date on your beautiful, new calendar
- Hang that calendar in a place where you will ALWAYS see it (i.e. on the wall and not under all that fancy paperwork on your desk for added decoration)
- Stare at it until your heart’s content…or until you begin to come up with a game plan on how to tackle all that’s due
- With all that thinking of how you’re going to tackle your university work, think of treating yourself to some breaks because you don’t want to overwork yourself and burn yourself out…it’s not fun
This process has worked for me since my undergrad days. And I swear by it. It’s very different when you actually visualize your due dates. One day you’ll thank me for this–you’re welcome in advance. If you’re adding a part-time job to the mix, you’ll be able to see when you wont be as available to work.
More wise words: try finding a part-time job that is flexible with your schedule–your education comes first (I know, I sound like a parent right now, but it’s the truth). Personally, I’ve been fortunate enough to work as a BU Student Ambassador. It’s been an excellent opportunity for me, and I recommend applying for a Student Ambassador role. I’m able to pick shifts that work around my schedule, and it works perfectly for me. Yes, it’s even a nice little break for me.
I hope my words of wisdom help you just as much as they’ve helped me.
Happy studying (and remember to take breaks)!