Time management skills from a busy life

Coming in as a freshman, I was horrified at the idea of joining organizations or even getting a job, but I later found I had no reason to be afraid.

I can honestly say I regret not getting involved at first.

I missed some rewarding opportunities such as priority registration over many others because of choosing to stick to my classes only.

There was always a negative stigma for me for those who do anything besides pursue academics in college.

My father went to college for a portion of his life, but soon he found himself unable to balance work and school.

He left college and remained in the work force, and he is still there today.

Making other commitments can take up too much time and distract you from the real reason you’re in college — academics for a future career.

It’s easy to lose sight of prioritizing academic and organizational commitments.

When you fail a class, you may only be letting yourself down.

When you fail a task within an organization, you may be letting a larger group of people down.

Who’s more likely to forgive you when you fail: others or yourself?

Involvement may also hinder a social life.

Spending too much time working on projects from day in to day out, may create little time left for friends.

School work is challenging as is and adding extra stress in the mixture is always a scary thought.

If others step down in these groups, you may feel the need to step up and take on more work for yourself.

It’s only reasonable to want to move up in something you care about, but it’s very easy to overwhelm yourself sometimes.

After a month or so of my first year on campus, I was managing 15 credits and working around 10-12 hours a week at my first job.

I felt unconnected to the University.That’s when I made efforts to go to organizational meetings I was generally interested in.

Everyone was friendly, and it was easy to incorporate myself as part of the groups.

One year later, I’m managing 13 credits, two jobs — three technically, serving as vice president for public relations in an organization, as well as being an active member within six other organizations, and attending leadership conferences when opportunities arise.

Because of this, I have to leave for classes about ten minutes earlier because there is a very high chance of me passing someone I know and striking up a small conversation.

Sometimes I don’t know how I went from no involvements to all that, but looking at things as individual tasks rather than looking at the whole picture has helped managing stress tremendously.

Not to brag, but I maintain a good GPA I and am a recipient of the Dean’s Scholarship.

I’d like to think my involvement helps maintain my GPA.

By having many meeting times and project deadlines, I have to make deadlines of my own.

Without a surplus of due dates from not being as involved, I would always tell myself I can do these project later.

Later came, and I continued pushing it off until the last minute.

The deadlines force me to be productive all the time, even if somedays it means working hard from 8 a.m. until 3 a.m. the next day.

Some would say I’m stretching myself thin and need time to relax and socialize.

To me, taking a break from one of my projects and working on something else is relaxing to me.

These projects often require input of other people which gives me excuses to socialize.

These groups also make it beneficial because of networking.

You never know when someone you meet my help you find better opportunities.

Having a job (or three) on campus also really helps with money for general items and especially student loans.

If all goes well, I’ll be able to pay off my loan from freshman year by the time I graduate.

That saves me tons of money from interest that if deferred could wind up twice the size as the loan itself.

Through being involved I get a feeling of personal satisfaction, and I’d like to feel like I’m making a difference.

The fact that this is even being read, gives me hope that more people will get involved with at least something beyond academics.

If it ever does become a daunting load to handle, it’s important to remember you are able to say no, and resigning from commitments are possible.

Although it may be easier for some to let yourself down rather than groups of people, you’re still a person.

If you’ve overwhelmed yourself, you can cut back.

But you’ll never know your limits unless you push yourself and take that risk.

College is the time for expanding your knowledge and trying out new things.

Involvement on campus allows for me to do both of these on a consistent basis.

This entry was posted on Monday, November 21st, 2011 and is filed under Opinion. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.

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