The Balancing Act

“I need help balancing my school work, my extracurricular activities, and social life. How do you manage it all– do you have any suggestions or recommendations?”

staff, Author

Balancing is a process that takes time to perfect and is usually found through a long sequence of trials and errors. A few things that I’ve come across are making lists and taking frequent self-evaluations.A club may meet after school once a week and that meeting may overlap with the one of the times that another club meets, but the second one meets twice a week. Which one is more important? Can you spare missing one meeting a week in order to be in both? Do your classes give you so much homework that adding two after school activities to the mix will overwork you? Having a notebook or even just a few pieces of paper can create a space for you to prioritize your plans and get into a steady rhythm.

First, start off by listing all of the things that you want  to get done or plan and then follow that up by ranking each things importance. Knowing your priorities allows you to pick and choose what things need to get done and what is just something that you would like to do.That being said, only focusing on schoolwork and never taking part in extracurricular activities or a social life can be just as bad as imbalance. Budgeting your time daily, weekly, or even two weeks at a time (this will vary depending on your schedule) just for needs will reveal your allotted “free time” which is where you can fill in the things that you actually enjoy.

Keep in mind to leave empty slots in your schedule that you can fill if a last minute opportunity arises, or to just have a moment to relax. Things are always changing and giving yourself time to breathe is necessary in order to know if you’re on a path that is benefitting you. Self-evaluations may seem stupid, but reflecting on your time and stress levels can benefit you a lot in the long run. If you find that you’re more stressed on one day than any other, that may be result of overbooking your time. Consistently checking on yourself can help in keeping all areas of your life in check.

Experiment with different strategies and if one thing doesn’t work, try something else! No matter what, remember to breathe and keep trying.