Student Blog – Creating a Balance Among School, Work, and Life
April 30, 2019 | Category: Articles
By: Jessica Squicciarini, RVT, RDCS
Online BSDMS Student
Although it might seem daunting to find a balance between school, work, and having a social life, it is possible and easier to implement than it appears. An essential component for creating such a balance is prioritizing your time. There was a time when the boundaries between work and home were fairly clear.1 Today, however, work is likely to invade your personal life.1
Leave Work at Work
Limiting the time you focus on work when you’ve left the office is critical. While demanding careers might require you to check emails when outside of the office, the bulk of your responsibilities should be done at work. This allows for more time to focus your energy elsewhere, whether it be on school work, domestic duties, or enjoying a leisurely activity.
Another element that aids in creating a balanced lifestyle is being mindful. It’s imperative to be present in the moment and concentrate on what you are doing in the “now”. Being in the present moment cultivates mindfulness, which enhances your ability to tackle current tasks at hand with a heightened sense of awareness.
Practicing mindfulness permits you to give all of your attention to any activity you’re engaged in, either at the office, when working on an assignment for school, having a conversation with a loved one, or reading a bed time story to your child. In other words, mindfulness corresponds to the higher-level awareness of present-moment sensory, affective, and cognitive experiences.2
If you are not in the habit of practicing mindfulness, you can tend to over extend yourself, which leads to stress, poor sleeping habits, and lower energy levels. All of which can result in decreased productivity and performance levels, leaving you with a sense of feeling off balance. Hence, maintaining a healthy lifestyle is another critical element for finding a state of equilibrium.
Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle
One tip for maintaining a healthy lifestyle is getting a good night’s sleep. This will stimulate your internal clock, so you will instinctually rise earlier, leaving time to incorporate exercise and/or meditation into your morning, which will set you up for a productive day. Eating a healthy diet is also important for maintaining a healthy life style. Including more fruits and veggies into your diet provides your body with the essentials it needs. This leads to optimal brain function, allowing you to utilize your time productively.
Organization is another key factor for creating balance. Try making a schedule for the week ahead! This will allow you to delegate your time accordingly; time for studying, family, and having some fun! It is essential to make time for friends and enjoy extra-curricular activities. By having your responsibilities prioritized, you’ll find the extra time to enjoy a cup of tea or coffee with a friend, indulge in some fictional reading, go on a hike or relax and see a movie. Remember, if your schedule is full, it’s okay to respectfully say no to more responsibilities. Setting boundaries is healthy and necessary for your mental health.
Ask for Help
Another important part of establishing balance is to remember to ask for help when needed. Reach out to your co-workers, professors, family members, or spouse when necessary. We are only human and all need a little help from time to time. The quality of your relationships can determine the health of your school/life balance.3 Putting these pieces together allows for the development of quality relationships with yourself and others. It’s time to find balance!
- Tips to regain your work-life balance. (2018, June 29). Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/in-depth/work-life-balance/art-20048134
- Desbordes, G., Gard, T., Hoge, E. A., Hölzel, B. K., Kerr, C., Lazar, S. W., . . . Vago, D. R. (2014). Moving Beyond Mindfulness: Defining Equanimity as an Outcome Measure in Meditation and Contemplative Research. Mindfulness, 6(2), 356-372. doi:10.1007/s12671-013-0269-8
- Karambelas, T. (2013, July 23). School-Life Balance. Retrieved from http://jhsap.org/self_help_resources/school-life_balance/index.html
Jessica Squicciarini is a student in the Online Bachelor of Science in Diagnostic Medical Sonography program at AdventHealth University. She works as a cardiovascular sonographer at South Shore Neurologic Associates & Island Cardiovascular in Long Island, NY. She enjoys yoga, running, hiking, reading and the beach.