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How to Balance Between Studies, Social Life, and Extracurriculars in University

How can I balance my studies, social life, and extracurricular activities effectively at university for a fulfilling experience?
Original post by jeremiahTheGreat
How can I balance my studies, social life, and extracurricular activities effectively at university for a fulfilling experience?

Hi there!

I can totally understand the difficulty in balancing your social life with your studies at university. As a third year student studying primary education, I will admit that I am still trying to find the balance especially while on school placement. It is important that you find/do something that you really love to do outside of your studies to keep your sanity, whether that is a hobby or participating in a society. I love to dance so I timetable out time for myself to ensure I can use this time to switch off, see my friends and not think about any stresses/pressures with my course during this time.

My lecturers at university have recommended that you keep one day a week where you do absolutely no work and ensure that you can rest and focus on yourself and your emotional wellbeing. I find this a little difficult as a procrastinator myself, but I think it is important to find the best technique which works for you.

It takes time to work out how much free time you can give to yourself, and with different deadlines throughout the year this may be ever evolving with your schedule. I would test out different things, for example, I started off by doing just a couple dance classes a week but I realised I was able to fit a couple more in so increased my extra curricular time.

It might also be worth setting yourself a timetable where you block out periods for yourself and for work to ensure you meet deadlines. This can be useful if you would like to become more organised as it limits the possibility of later stress with university workload.

I hope this helped in some way and that you succeed in finding your work-life balance! Remember that different things work for different people so don't be afraid to try lots of options.

Good luck!

Rachel- YSJ student rep
Original post by jeremiahTheGreat
How can I balance my studies, social life, and extracurricular activities effectively at university for a fulfilling experience?

Hey @jeremiahTheGreat :smile:

I think it's a good idea to create to-do lists and label them from high priority, upcoming tasks and least priority so you can stay on top of things more easily, and help boost your productivity and keep yourself accountable for upcoming tasks.

It's so important to prioritise your mental health and wellbeing so making sure you have regular breaks, eat well, get another sleep, go for walks outside and get some fresh air, see friends and family. It used to help me a lot if I made plans for after my studying / exams was over, so I always had something to look forward to and made revising not seem as daunting as I knew something exciting was to happen once I'd finished!

I also recommend reaching out to academic advisors at your uni to help with essays, they really helped me stay on track on my work.

Good luck with your university journey!! :smile:

Becky
Original post by jeremiahTheGreat
How can I balance my studies, social life, and extracurricular activities effectively at university for a fulfilling experience?


Hi there,

It can feel quite daunting when you first come to uni and you feel like you have lots of things to do and you want to ensure you do them all but try not to worry as there is plenty of time to do everything.

My best advice for this would be to plan as effectively as you can. At the start of the week I would write in your calendar/make a schedule of everything that needs to be done that week and then you can see what spare time you have around this. It's a good idea to have different colours for different activities - e.g. red for essential (assignments, lectures, work, if you have specific plans etc) and green for wants (going out, shopping etc) etc so that you can clearly see what needs doing and then work things you want to do around this. Make sure you plan in social activities each week as this is so important to have time with friends as well as doing work!

It's also worth putting deadlines, exams etc into your calendar as soon as you find out when they are as this makes it so much easier to plan around!

If you are planning on doing a society, these are usually on set days each week which makes it easy to plan around as you always know that they are on the same day each week. If they have social nights which you would want to go to, these are usually on the same night too, or you will be told in advance so this is easy to plan too.

Some courses also have uni on the same days each week but some change around so it is important to check this and put this into your plan otherwise it can get quite confusing!

As well as this, there will be certain times when you will naturally want to do certain things. E.g. on a Saturday night you might want to go out and not work so you would roughly know what times to plan doing work and what times to plan for having free time/going out/other activities.

I hope some of this helps!

Lucy -SHU student ambassador :smile:
Original post by jeremiahTheGreat
How can I balance my studies, social life, and extracurricular activities effectively at university for a fulfilling experience?

@jeremiahThe Great

Make sure you rest and that you are not all go, go, go!

It's easy to be too busy and to be trying to do everything rather than thinking about what you can do and what is important to you.

Your university timetable will dictate how much time you have during the week and will also help you to think about the best time to do food shopping, cooking, cleaning etc...

A great social life can mean different things for different people. It may be arranging dinner with friends, meeting up with people for coffee or lunch, going to the cinema, bowling, attending uni events or going to arts venues etc..

University is a great time to invest in friendships as you have time to get to know people well at a point in life when you are interested in getting to know more people, when its easier to meet a range of people and when most other people are looking to make friends! If this is what a fulfilling experience at university is for you then invest time in getting to know people and be pro-active in talking to people and inviting them to things. Societies are a great way to make friends.

It may be though that a fulfilling experience for you at university is trying lots of new sports, getting to a good level in one of them and enjoying the opportunities that come from playing sport at uni.

You could be degree-focused and a fulfilling experience is tied to anything that will help you get a better grade or increase your chances of getting your dream job and so a fulfilling time at university is based on the opportunities your university provides.

It could be a little bit of all of them, but it's about your priorities and having enough time to rest, so you can check once in awhile see that you are getting what you want out of uni.

Hope that helps,

Oluwatosin 3rd year student University of Huddersfield
Hey,
I'm Haya, a final year medical student. Balancing all these things can definitely feel like a nightmare to figure out, especially if you're just starting out at uni.

I found that making a online database (like Notion) where I note down what I need to accomplish during the week really helps in managing these things. There is also an online calendar to add all the information like deadlines

I often using the weekdays to study and do extracurriculars while using my time in the weekends to hang out with friends

I use post-it notes to remind of me of chores I need to do and phone reminders to book in activities with friends

On Sunday I like to revise/catchup on what I missed during the week days

I hope this helps,
Haya - MBBS V

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