Achieving a balance between academics and social life while in college is challenging.

Having a perfectly synchronized social and academical life while in the university is challenging.

The University is a very stimulating environment, full of wonderful opportunities for both social and learning activities. Finding your balance may be most difficult if you are a first-year student, because uni provides so many choices and so much less structure than high school. While an ideal balance may be hard to find, wise use of time can help.

You need fun in your life. Some students schedule every available minute for studying. Usually, this leads to ineffective use of time. If you try to work longer hours, you may find yourself in a spiral, working increasingly longer hours and getting less done. This is called the law of diminishing returns.

If you believe you are overworked, the solution is to reassess the time you devote to fun. Have you allowed yourself quality fun time? Some “fun” activities take a lot of time, but don’t produce a sense of enjoyment. Here are some tips for reassessing your use of time:

• List the things on which you spend time that are not productive in terms of learning. Be sure to include eating, sleeping, chatting with friends, shopping, cleaning, and other non- events that take time. Also include occasional events, such as parties or concerts. Get as many different items on your list as possible.

• Review your list and see if any of the items need to be grouped together. For example, you may have listed washing clothes and cleaning your room. These might be similar enough to be grouped together.

1. Set internal priorities and schedule your time.There are many ways to spend your time at college. You need to be very clear about why you are there to stay focused on your long-term goals. It is important to structure your time and make sure you keep large deadlines in mind. For help on structuring your time, read the steps in “Planning and Managing my Time,”as well as “Setting Priorities” and “Achieving My Goals.”

2. Work in the library or a quiet place.

Your hostel can be full of distractions: your bed, TV, computer, and other people who may be relaxing or making noise. Unless you are able to block all of this out, the library or another quiet place will be a more productive place to study.

3. Choose the right living environment.

Some dorms have a much more serious atmosphere than others. This is also true of fraternities and sororities. When you choose a place to live, give consideration to your need for quiet and support for your academic goals.

4. Take care of your body.

To function at your best, your body needs a balanced diet, exercise, and adequate

sleep. Be sure these needs are addressed in your schedule. You will have more energy for your academics if you are feeling well.

5. Coordinate your free time with your friends.

As you develop a group of friends, see if you can schedule free time together. This doesn’t mean taking time away from your studying, but rather shuffling your study time so you can enjoy your social time.

6. Being a student is a full-time job.

Your academics require your attention every day. While you may spend a weekend day relaxing, make sure you devote the majority of every weekday to your studies. If you leave studying to the last minute, there will not be enough time to do a good job.

There is no perfect formula for balancing your social life and academics. Each person must find a balance that works for them. If you can develop the habits and self-discipline that you need to manage your time effectively, your an

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