Published on October 25th, 2017 | by Guest0
Student-Athletes: 5 Proven Tips for Balancing School, Sports, and Social Life
There are plenty of tips for students struggling to combine work and studies, but there’s hardly a few for those, who try to balance their college education with sports. It’s a pity because athletes have probably as many duties as working students do (and sometimes even more).
That’s why today I want to focus on productivity tips that could help students to balance their studies, sports activities, and social life successfully.
1. Find a way to organize your day.
I’ve seen many of the tips that emphasize the importance of a schedule. But while a schedule is indeed important, there’s no tool that suits everyone. To some students an old-fashioned notebook would be a perfect tool – they can use it as an organizer, try bullet journaling, and so on. Some, however, prefer digital tools – this way you don’t have to carry a notebook with you and you can change your plans without crossing things out with a pen and making pages look messy.
The others use calendars instead – Google calendar or the one their phones have by default. While such things are not good enough for planning routines and small daily tasks, they still can be used to remind you about the important events coming soon, be it tests or sports games.
In the end, it doesn’t matter which tool you’ll choose – but you should consider choosing one. Such things help you visualize your schedule, which makes planning and prioritizing much easier.
2. Don’t plan more than you can handle.
Not all people are equally good in understanding where does their time go and how much they can handle a day. To some of us, this isn’t a problem at all. To some, however, that could be a constant struggle.
A good way to find out how productive you are (and can be) is to write down everything you do during the day, tracking how much time it takes for you to complete a certain task, be it training or showering. After doing so for a couple of days straight you’ll have a more realistic picture of how you handle various tasks. You’ll also be able to spot things that steal too much of your time (for example, TV shows or social media or the habit of distracting from studies to check this website, and so on) and minimize the time you spend on them daily.
After you do so, try planning your daily tasks accordingly. Don’t forget to track your reactions as well. For example, if you know that training exhausts you, try to plan your studies before them.
3. Always be sure to prioritize.
Even if you learn how to plan things right, there’s still a chance that you find yourself facing too many tasks you need to complete in the next couple of days. Sadly, college schedules aren’t always flexible and convenient enough, so even the most organized students can struggle with the number of tasks sometimes.
Though there are situations when all you need to do is to buy some energy drinks and brace yourself before a sleepless night, it isn’t always this unbearable. Sometimes it’s the ability to set your priorities right and quick that helps students avoid such situations.
Of course, it isn’t easy. It might require you to turn down a party invitation because you have an important test coming. It might require you to pick juice instead of beer because you have a competition tomorrow and you want to be in your best shape. But in the end, it’s these small decisions and priorities that help you succeed both in sports and in studies.
4. Work ahead.
There are plenty of students who tend to postpone studies until the very end. Maybe you’re one of them, maybe you aren’t. Either way, you should avoid this at any costs. Such habit is bad for different reasons. First, it increases the amount of stress in your life: you find yourself in stressful situations more often and what’s even worse is that you create them with your own hands. Second, it worsens the quality of the work you submit.
Being an athlete, you must know that the more you train, the better the result will be. The same goes for studies: the more time you spend on completing an assignment, the better it would be. That’s why always try to finish your tasks as quickly as you can so you’ll have more time to polish them later or simply will be able to focus on more important tasks.
5. Don’t forget to rest.
When you’re too focused on becoming productive and balancing your sports with your studies, you might not think that you need to plan your rest as well. After all, the whole purpose of planning is to finish the most important tasks early and rest after, isn’t it?
But it’s not that simple. A person is able to perform effectively for a long time only when they get enough rest. And not any rest counts as the quality one. While spending an evening watching Netflix is indeed good and enjoyable sometimes, this shouldn’t be the only rest you get.
It’s important to make your rest diverse to ensure that it won’t become another routine. If your life is very busy, a quiet evening spent on watching Netflix might indeed relax you a lot and make you happy. However, if you do that every evening, your emotions won’t be as intense. You’ll hardly feel as relaxed and comfortable as before.
To avoid that, try different activities and always find some time to rest, no matter how busy your schedule might seem. It might even be easier for you to plan your rest in the same way you plan your tasks – this way you’ll ensure that you’ll always have time to relax, even if a bit.
I hope this article will help you become more productive and less stressed. Good luck!