Author: J Odendaal
Balancing your studies and your job simultaneously is a juggling act. However, do not feel isolated; you are not alone! Making decisions about your future is never an easy task, but here is a little advice to help you juggle the two, so you can succeed at both your studies and your job.
Master the art of organisation. With responsibilities and commitments from both sides, it is key that you plan and get organised. According to Nelson Mandela University (2021), it is important to “create a detailed schedule that helps you find the balance between your work obligations, academic studies, and personal life.”
You will inevitably need to make some sacrifices, but finding time for a run or some much-needed family time is just as important for your overall well-being as spending time on an assignment. In addition, you need to be realistic about the time you have available so that you can plan and work ahead of your deadlines. This gives you a little more time if you have an unexpected crisis at work, with your studies, or in your personal life.
Remember, you are not alone in your choice to study and work. Embrace your community, family, and friends and discuss challenges and solutions with this support network. Ask for help when you need it. Your support network will be informed about your commitments which will contribute to their understanding of your situation (Nelson Mandela University, 2021).
Break your workload into manageable portions:
The amount of work on your plate might feel overwhelming, but it is manageable (especially at the end of a long workday) if you divide it into bite-size pieces. When you regularly tick these smaller tasks off your to-do list, you feel that you are making progress. Remember to celebrate these achievements, so you are motivated to continue each semester. There are only a certain number of hours in a day, so discipline and dedication are key. Doing a lot of work more regularly, for example, daily, is easier than trying to do it all night before a deadline, especially if you depend on technology. With regular progress, you will not run the risk of falling behind on your commitments or being
stressed out because of unforeseen events, such as network failures or load-shedding.
After a hard day, it can be challenging to know that you still have a few hours of studying ahead of you. Take a moment to remind yourself why you are doing this, and find the motivation to continue. However, remember that quality study time is more important than quantity, so if your tiredness will “impact your ability to study, be flexible and find another time to catch up on missed work” (Nelson Mandela University, 2021).
Remember your end goal and that the pressure you are putting yourself under now is not permanent. Therefore, working and studying can be financially and professionally beneficial in the long run, and it is a massive undertaking. However, when you are studying teaching, which you are genuinely interested in, you will find the motivation.
Nelson Mandela University. (2021). It’s a juggling act [Online], Available:
2021/It%E2%80%99s-a-juggling-act [accessed, 25 February 2022].