Balancing work and studying

by Aug 12, 2019

As a student, it can be difficult to juggle studying with other activities in your life – particularly if you’re working or undertaking an internship. If you’re a student in this position, you likely have an obligation to earn money and sustain yourself so that you can live and go to school. So, the question is, how do you balance your life so that you can both work your job and achieve academic success?

What does it mean to balance work and study?

You’re going to work every day, – or at least multiple times a week – and you’re doing your job while you’re there. When you’re at work, you’re focusing on that. That’s the first part of balancing work with academic success: concentrate on your job when you’re at work and focus on school when you’re at school.

Set aside designated chunks of time to study, and when you’re studying, hyper-focus on the academics. Don’t think about your job or let the stressful components of work get to your head when you need to focus on school because at the moment, that’s not what is important. Separate the two entities. There will be time to dedicate to your job when you’re there. Compartmentalize tasks for work and school into their own time slots to avoid getting overwhelmed.

You will get out of balance sometimes, and it’s okay to recalibrate the scale

There will be times where things are out of balance, and your work and academic life are conflated, and that’s okay. That’s often when stress arises. That’s why it’s essential to recognize it when things are stressing you out and feeling out of balance; if you observe it, you can do something about it. One of the things that you can do is set boundaries. For example, if you’re studying for an exam and your employer contacts you to ask you to come in for an extra shift and you can’t do that, tell them. Most employers will understand that you need to put school first, and you aren’t obligated to do everything.

You need to draw the line for yourself so that you don’t get out of whack. The work-life balance is achieved that way, and that’s a skill that you’ll need for the rest of your life. It’s about knowing your limits and setting boundaries accordingly.

Under promise and over deliver

If you know that you can complete a certain amount of work in a specific amount of time, tell your supervisor that you’ll be able to complete a lesser amount of tasks in that time-frame. Or, pick a deadline that is further away from the date that you can actually complete the work by. That way, you’re under promising and over delivering. If you try to do too much, you’ll end up failing and disappointing people. That’s why under promising is a great skill to learn; you’ll end up impressing people by exceeding their expectations.

Not only that, but it’ll also (hopefully) make you feel less overwhelmed with the amount of work that you have to do. Most people perform better and are more enjoyable to be around when they aren’t stressed to the max, which is another benefit of this tactic.

Everybody gets out of balance sometimes. What can you do to help your mental health?

One of the ways to keep yourself on track is to see a licensed mental health counselor or therapist. You might work with someone on your local area (possibly, even someone on campus), or you could choose online counseling. BetterHelp is one of the places that offer stellar online counselors who care and want to see you succeed in your academic life, your work life, and your personal life. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help so that you can keep on track and succeed wherever you go.


Featured image courtesy of Unsplash

Marie Miguel

Marie Miguel

Lead Writer

Marie Miguel has been a writing and research expert for nearly a decade, covering a variety of health-related topics. Currently, she is contributing to the expansion and growth of a free online mental health resource with With an interest and dedication to addressing stigmas associated with mental health, she continues to specifically target subjects related to anxiety and depression.