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Balancing school and work

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Lizbeth Tovar Lizbeth Tovar 410 Points

Hi all I am currently a junior in college at the Univeristy of Texas at Rio Grande Valley and looking forward to this semester Spring 2021 as new challenges have popped out in my life. I am over-stressed already about the five classes I will be taking and my personal life which includes a full-time backup manager position I am currently working on. I don't know if I am doing wrong or right in keeping that position and being a full-time student as well. Overthinking has always been me and now that I am halfway done through college and with a full-time job I stand in a position where I'm finding it really difficult. 

Dayana Alvarez Dayana Alvarez 400 Points

Hi Lizbeth,

I am too curently working a full time job and attending school full time. I too over stress about things that are coming up or stressing about things that havent even happened yet. One thing I can suggest is always sticking to a planer. I know a lot of people suggest this but pick one day out of the week for example Monday and fill out all the homework that you have due that week. This will help you keep track of what you have upcoming for that week and take it one week at a time. You can put notes on the side if you have an essay coming up that you work on it a little at a time without stressing yourself the day of. This has worked for me and Im hoping it works for you too. Good Luck. 

Sydni Callahan Sydni Callahan 400 Points


I am currently in my last semester of student teaching, I am also a student athlete who works when I have free time on the weekends. From my experience, I do feel it is very easy to become stressed. I would suggest getting yourself a planner! Everyone is different when it comes to this but for me, I try to split up each of my schedules using color coordination if that's not too overwhelming for you! Also, it's important to frolic and have mental health days, find one day or even a couple hours during the day to take your mind off of things they don't cause you stress! :) 

Rachel Yeupell Rachel Yeupell 510 Points

Hello Lizbeth, I am also working full-time at a high school and taking six courses at UTRGV as a junior. I have felt so overwhelmed and my anxiety has gotten progressively worse during this time and distance learning is not helping that. It is important for us to stay grounded and focused on our 'why' in what we we are doing. I have found that when I am feeling completely drained, I write down my purpose and calling for the place I am at in my life which is to pour into the next generation and support them in their endeavors both academically and personally to be the best versions of themselves and to work on myself in the process. Keep your head up because the finish line is in sight! 

Miya York Miya York 20 Points

Hi Lizbeth, I understand your problem very well. I faced the same thing myself a couple of years ago. I used to have to work hard to achieve my goals at work or school. I also had to do difficult tasks, which were time-consuming but not satisfying or rewarding. But my salvation was a clever way to distribute time and delegate some processes to study. I started making a plan for the day, which gave me more free time. And some of my tasks on the study I did using the service Studybay. It's easy to sign in for an online service. In this way I also relieved my day a bit. But in general, of course, combining work and study is very difficult, but many people do it. I hope you can do it too:)

Elise Dickerson Elise Dickerson 1078 Points


I was wondering if you were able to find a balance between all your responsibilities? Best wishes for you.


Amanda Moyers Amanda Moyers 583 Points


I am in the same boat you are currently in. I am a paraprofessional and in my third year of college as well. Between three children who play travel sports, work, and college I am seemingly stressed and exhausted daily. I try to find a few minutes each day even if it is only for a few minutes right when I wake up, I collect my thoughts and have a cup of coffee before I begin the craziness of the day. I totally understand where you are coming from but try to take a breath every once in a while or you will burn out quickly. Good luck in your education endeavors!

Jack Bevans Jack Bevans 660 Points

Hi there Lizbeth, I completely understand how you are feeling right now. I have found that staying organized is a great way to find a sense of comfort and stability. My strategy is to always have a document open on my computer where I have color coded all of my classes, clubs, and my job. I then add all assignments and commitments I have with the time they are due. Another strategy I have had to implement as someone with ADHD is separating myself from my friends and roommate when I need to be productive and study. I suggest finding a place that you can dedicate as your 'study location', and that will help motivate your brain to want to be productive when you are there. Something else that works for me is to find instrumental music (no words is important) to play when I'm studying or working. It helps keep me in a good mood and having something playing lightly in the background can be good for focusing. In fact results of studies show that if a 'distraction' during studying is consistent throughout the entire time, it has no negative effects on memory recall. I hope this all helps, and I wish you the best of luck. Do whatever is best for you and your mental/physical health!

Sandra Javier Sandra Javier 1200 Points

Hey there Lizbeth, I hope things by now have turned around or you have gained a little clarity. I am a current student for UTRGV as well and I recently let go of my stable job to focus full time on school. I think I know what you may have been feeling. It was hard to balance both things at once and for me, it was best to decide to focus on school. I'm an overthinker and suffer from a few mental illnesses myslef but graduating has always been my ultimate goal in life. I think my advice for you, if you are still in this situation or find yourself in any situation that may make you feel of this nature is to keep your eye on the prize and take it day by day. Focus on one task at a time and don't let your tasks overwelm you. An agenda has been my best friend and I write everything i need to do in a week and highlight it as a I do a task. Keep your head up Lizbeth, and keep fighting. 

Jennifer Hernandez Jennifer Hernandez 930 Points

Hey Lizbeth! you chose a very hot topic for college students. We are all on the same boat as you. I was depressed and had major anxiety after my dad got diagnosed with cancer. I did not know how to balance work, school, my child, my husband, and my dads recent diagnose. I felt as if my world was concaving in on me and thats when I realized that I was never an organized person. My life was a mess and I was a mess too. I began by prioritizing what was most important to least important for the day. My first semester I did not pass all my courses which I shoud've just dropped them. Therefore, Dont beat yourself up over something that is not in your control. Become zen and take things one day at a time. At times like today, I am nervous and my anxiety shoots through the roof at night when my dad is having surgery and I have to be here at school. Its tough but, keep your head up. Sometimes you have to make small sacrifices for whats most important in your life right now. In this case my dad is better my mental health is better and I am almost back.

Best wishes,

Jennifer :)

Kaitlyn Sluger Kaitlyn Sluger 130 Points

Hey Lizbeth,


I know exactly how you feel. trying to balance work life, school life, and family life is really hard. I am too stressed and overwhelmed with everything. I have started my intership part of school work and the work load is so much more than what i am use to and next years internship I will be working for free. so the fincial part working side of me is a little stressed with that. But i try to remain positive and know there is a light at the end of the tunnel and it will be worth it in the long run. I try to stay ahead and get things done or look it over early enough so if i have a question i can ask and know what  i am doing and not feel stressed and figuring it out at the last minute. 

Margaret Smith Margaret Smith 60 Points

I have to remind myself often that things are only for a season and it is ok to ask for help when you need it. All too often I think I can do more and am afraid to say when I need something. It is ok to not always have it together. It is also ok to not always say yes to everything. My mom is always telling me that 'No' is a complete sentence. 

Chelsea Eguia Chelsea Eguia 625 Points

Hello Lizbeth, I am currently a full time student as well only thing is I have a part time job. But I know just how stressful school can get, so here are some tips that helped me figure out how to balance my time correctly. First and foremost, I think planners are so beneficial to have because it keeps all your assignments and classes organized. I usually buy the notebook sized planners and color code my classes with the assignments and their due date. This also helps me prioritize my assignments based on their due date and importance (as in if its a project or a discussion). Another thing, I'd advice if your work place is flexible to work on some assignments inbetween breaks or even do some readings during breaks or even before your shift begins. During the weekends is more of my crunch time, i try to use any time I have on my hands to get an early start into the new week. If i can get atleast 2 of 3 assignments done by the weekend for the upcoming week it takes off a huge workload off my back. Some other things that have helped me are waking up early even if i dont have a class going on, I begin my days at 7am the latest and work on assignments till I have class or work. I think the most important thing is avoiding time wasters like your phone or distractions. It's hard to restrict yourself from enjoying those things but when there is lots to do its really helpful. Lastly, be aware and watch out for signs of burn out, I know jobs are essential but remember why you are in school in the first place and try to talk with your managers to see where you can meet in the middle to help your work load. I know at my place they give me one or two days off a week that I dedicate soley to school. Hang in there everything will work itself out, just remember to manage your stress with some breathing exercises, drinking plenty of water and taking your vitamins. Best of luck Lizbeth, you got this!

Mia Ramirez Mia Ramirez 440 Points

Hello Lizbeth! I too am a fellow student attending UTRGV. This is my first semester as a senior so I have some experience balancing my job as well as focusing on school. The first thing that I recommend doing is something that everyone recommends, which is purchasing a planner or journal to keep organized! I know this might sound cliche but having a planner really does help, I promise! I always take 30 minutes every Monday to go through each class/class syllabus to fill in my week. After that I take a moment to review the assignments and divide the work into each day of the week so that I can slowly get each assignment done, which helps with lowering stress and anxiety! Each day I will cross off an assignment which is really satisfying and you'll feel proud of yourself after doing so. Now with work, I luckily have a boss that is fully aware that I am a full time student so I take advantage of this and work on things whenever I have a break to work on assignments or catch up on reading. I would talk to your manager to see if you could possibly do the same! If you are contemplating switching jobs or even positions in order to lessen your stress/work load then I would recommend sitting down either by yourself or with a person you trust and have a discussion about the pros and cons of staying at your work etc. As for me, my family always stressed for me to prioritized school over work so that I can achieve good grades so with whatever choice you make, make sure your school comes first because your money and degree is on the line! With all this in mind I know that there are just certain days that seem especially difficult to get through but I would definityely take either a couple hours or a day to do something that brings your joy, like focusing on a hobby, going out with friends, or simple getting extra rest. With all the hard work you are putting in, you deserve to treat yourself. I hope that I helped you by sharing some tips, I wish you the very best of luck with finding the perfect balance between work, school, and mental health.

Jessica Palma Jessica Palma 1628 Points

 This has been my semester this year around. What I learned is one must plan and schedule the day out, if not one will be all over the place. Hopefully, you had an amazing semester! Good-luck!


Tatiana Correia Tatiana Correia 280 Points

Having seperation in my school, work, and personal life has been the most difficult thing. Having a planner and utilizing Google Calander is absolutely essential in order to stay on track with everything. I also do not tell any of the my work friends my persoanl life because it makes all my lives intertwine. I hope everyone is finishing the semester strong1

Maia Bustamante Maia Bustamante 410 Points

Hi everyone! As the President of my school's Student Government Association and the Vice President of a Filpino organization on campus, I have trouble balancing school and org work. There's a lot going on at the same time and so I make sure to stay organized and keep a Google calendar with all of my due dates for assignments, meeting dates, and any events I have going on. This really helps and I hope this will help some of you to balance school and work.

Mathew Balybin Mathew Balybin 65 Points

It would be good if this knowledge was required by the state itself and if persons holding senior government positions were taught to study mathematics and, in necessary cases, to turn to it.

Noeimi Arteaga Noeimi Arteaga 730 Points

Hi Lizbeth,

I completely understand how you feel. What has helped me out managing my time has been a planner. Literally my best friend now. I split all my assignments and work around other tasks I have to get done.
I also make time to focus on my mental health, I give myself a couple of hours to go to the gym and get my body moving, which really helps me out.
Focus on one task at a time, don’t let tasks overwhelm you.   Good Luck!

Earline Vanegas Earline 170 Points


Balancing school and work is super stressful. I currently work fulltime, taking two college classes for my first intership and I'm a mom of two so I know everything can feel overwhelming. I always try to take some time for self care, if that means a 10 minute walk each day or doing some deep breathing in the morning or night! 


Cynthia Sanchez Cynthia 350 Points

Hi, what were some things that allowed you to feel less stressed about balancing that job and college classes? I'm in the same predicament, going to work in a school from 8 to 4 and then coming to my late classes at the univeristy. I just want to know how to disolve the amount of stress I'm feeling without my grades or job taking a toll on that. Or if maybe im carrying myself too much?

Julia Norford Julia Norford 60 Points

Hi there,

I can relate to all of the comments on this thread. 2 years ago I decided to quit my job and start a new career in teaching, which meant starting a new job and grad school at night. It can get very stressful and overwhelming at times, and sometimes I get too hard on myself and get frustrated with the fact that I am overwhelmed. I have a friend who was working and in grad school and she got perfect grades and kept a full social life and did not seem very stressed. I started comparing myself to her, which is never a good idea. I have found it is best to just feel what I'm feeling, embrace it, and 'name' the feelings. Sometimes I will literally say out loud 'I'm super stressed about this right now!'. It feels better to acknowledge it rather than try to pretend I'm not feeling overwhelmed. I have also found that it is helpful to take things one at a time, and not look at the big picture so much. If I'm stressed about classes, I'll remind myself that the semester is over in x days - don't start stressing about next semester before it has even started! Additionally, I have really found that exercise helps me feel better and less stressed. Sometimes I want to cancel a workout because I 'don't have time', but actually, when I get home from exercising, I feel happier and more motivated to check things off my to-do list, thus creating more time in my day for 'me time'. Hope this was helpful! 

Kristine Rowland Kristine Rowland 2290 Points

Hi there,

I understand completely. I am a single mother of 3, go to school in the evenings, work full time as a kindergarten teacher in Georgia, and help take care of my aging parents with daily visits. It doesn't leave much time for a social life- because let's be honest, something has to give. I keep a poster next to my desk at school and it says ' Keep Balance'.  I think that is the key. At any day, you will find sticky notes with things to do the next day because I didn't get them done that day. No matter how long I work, I have found that there is always a to do list with sticky notes on my desk. And even it I worked 15 hours a day, there would still be a to-do list, because you are never finished. There is always more to do. But, you have to take care of your mental health too. Otherwise you are no good to anyone. I have found that a new schedule helps to keep you on track. And if you need to put yourself on the schedule, do it. 

Raelynn Hughes Raelynn Hughes 420 Points


I completely understand feeling overwhelmed. I suggest identifying your most important tasks and prioritizing them. Create a to-do list or schedule to plan your day, week, or month. This can help you allocate time to different responsibilities. Establish clear boundaries between work and personal life. When your workday is over, try to disconnect from work-related emails or tasks. Create a designated workspace at home to help separate your professional and personal environments. Understand your limits and don't hesitate to decline additional responsibilities or commitments if you feel overwhelmed. Saying no is an important skill for maintaining a healthy work-life balance. Overall, just be realistic about what you can accomplish in a given timeframe. Set achievable goals for both your professional and personal life to avoid feeling overwhelmed.

Milana Shindelman Milana Shindelman 220 Points


I hope that things have become clearer for you. I am a current student and had to resign from my part-time job to focus on my schoolwork. I understand how you may have been feeling. It isn't easy to juggle two things at once; therefore, I decided it best to focus on my schoolwork. My schoolwork comes first. I feel like I can do multiple things but then after rethinking my decisions; I realized that sometimes I cannot. It is very important to take things slowly; baby steps. Focus on one thing at a time and accomplish it. Be strong!

Leigh McMahon Leigh McMahon 510 Points

Hi Lizabeth! I hope that things have become less stressful for you. I also have been recently facing some similar problems between work and school and have done a few things to help keep myself on top of everything. In order to keep track of what I have due or going on, I write everything down in a planner. I found this to be a great tool to use because not only does it help me keep track of school assignments but it also allows me to keep track of things that I have going on at work as well. As for work, I have been really fortunate enough that I have a boss who understands that school comes first and allows me some leeway when it comes to anything related to school. While I do not know how your bosses are or how your work environment is, I think just being open and honest when talking to your boss or higherup about things related to school can help a little with the stress of it all. It is easy to immediately overthink things but sometimes just taking a break and taking deep breaths can help with this :)

Kenyata Payton Kenyata Payton 976 Points

Hi Lizabeth,

I hope you have found a balance between work and school life. I am also a full-time Academic Coach working on my doctorate. I have a planner that I use to write everything down literally. This keeps me organized and on track with assignments. Also, I can see what days I have open for family and friends. Using a planner has been life-changing. I hope you find a way to make a good balance.

Giannina Martinez Giannina Martinez 530 Points

Hi Lizabeth. I understand that being a student and having a full-time job is very demanding. I am currently also attending school with a full-time job but will only be taking 3 classes this semester. When I started the teaching program, I decided to complete my courses in modified blocks. This decision means taking fewer classes per semester and taking longer to graduate, but it also allows me to balance work, school, and priorities at home. For me, this was a good plan because my job is very demanding, and always changing. I hope that you are able to find a solution that works for you. 

Mairyn Vega Mairyn Vega 540 Points

Hi Lizabeth, I hope you were able to find your balance, I am currently looking for mine. I am a junior at UTRGV, and I work at a restaurant, where there is only 3 other people who can work my position, meaning I can't ask for more days off. But I have started to take more advantage of my day by starting to wake up early to catch up on homework instead of staying up late. Personally, seeing that there is so many people going through the same thing, I feel better about my situation as in I am not the only one here struggling. So you arent alone, and there is always resources to help you with time management, and balancing school and work. 

Genesis Fernandez Genesis Fernandez 465 Points


I completely understand where you are coming from! I am also balancing school and two jobs. It can get to be a lot at times, however, I have found that having a weekly check-in at the end/beginning of your week can truly set you up for a better time. I use Sundays as a reset day and take some time to sit with my planner and write down the assignments for the week. In addition to that, I give myself days to complete each assignment/ due date before the actual due date. As long as you stick to it, it makes life a whole lot easier. You stay on top of things and even if you did need a bit more time, you have it because you set yourself up to complete it earlier regardless. I hope this helps, and good luck!

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