If you’re a college student that juggles studies with work you know how difficult it can get at times. You know what I’m referring to- the long days, the short sleeps, early morning anxiety, and the last minute stress.
I was initially going to throw out a list of ways to stay motivated as a college student that holds a job but I figured I would just say write whatever is on my mind without any particular format. It is a blog after all, right?
Just remember that it will all be over one day. Your studies will be completed. You will have a degree in your hand. You will graduate from college debt free or with minimal student debt. You may even have some money saved up in your bank account. This financially buffer will alleviate some of the stress that comes along with the career hunt after college. You won’t have to jump at the first offer that comes your way (unless it’s an amazing one).
Obviously life won’t get easier after college but at least the stress of studying for exams and worrying about earning the grades you want will go away. Now you can push yourself in a totally different discipline. The discipline of the real world. The discipline of finding that first career and negotiating your starting salary.
Another way to stay motivated when working during the school year is to use some of the money to reward yourself. This doesn’t mean to pick up a serious drinking or smoking habit. That will only make things worse for you. However, there is nothing wrong with planning a weekend trip a few times a semester. I choose to plan a week vacation at the end of every semester to keep me sane and motivated throughout the tough times. In the back of my mind I stay focused knowing that once I write my final exam I will be gone for a week.
Others just simply need a quick escape at the end of the day or at the end of a long week to stay motivated while working through college. What is the escape for you? Some common escapes include: alone time, playing video games, a free drinks with friends, a workout, playing your favorite sport, etc.
Before I conclude I wanted to throw out one more idea. Think of working as a way to keep yourself focused and out of trouble. If you were not to work you may spend most of your time studying. On the other hand, all of that free time may not be good for you. Personally I know that free time is not the best option for me. When I have free time my mind tends to wander. I look at my to-do list in the morning and then by night time the list remains identical. On paper free time is perfect for completing all of your school work. Realistically, let’s be honest. Most of the free time is spent watching the Hills or old UFC fights. So if you ever are low on time, look at it from this perspective. If you were at home there is no guarantee you would be 100% focused on your school.
How do you stay motivated while working during the school year?