Sorry for the delayed post, I’ve been so busy with school and work lately! It’s been over a month since I’ve started school and I’m still trying to find the best way to juggle everything. I remember a day when I was running from meeting to meeting across the GTA and rushed to class to make it on time for a group presentation. When I finally got home after a 16 hour day, my eyes were still wide open and my brain was super alert. Have you ever had those days when you’re so tired, that you’re actually too tired to sleep? My heart and mind were racing all day, so I had to have an hour to myself to slow down and relax before I was able to fall asleep. I’m learning the ups and downs of managing the balancing act and these are some things I’ve realized so far.
1. Take it one step at a time
Going back to school after working for a few years is a big adjustment. When you feel like you’re already strapped for time working a full time job, school chips away at that small window of free time even more. There will be weekends and week evenings dedicated to studying instead of relaxing. It could feel stressful and tiring at times, so I find it helps to focus on one task at a time. If I’m too focused on the long list of to-do’s, it’ll only make me feel more stressed and overwhelmed. Focusing on tackling one task at a time makes me feel more accomplished and it helps shorten the to-do list!
2. Coffee is a must!
I am a big coffee addict and starting school has made my coffee addiction worse. Just the thought of having a 16 hour day equates to multiple cups of coffee. I try to swap out coffee for an occasional coconut water but it’s not the same! I don’t recommend it if you don’t need it, but I genuinely enjoy coffee so it makes going to class a bit more pleasant and helps me stay awake too!
3. Planners and calendars are your best friend
My planner is my best friend and is always with me everywhere I go. I don’t like using my phone for tasks because I like how the planner visually lays everything out for me. Whether it’s working from another office one day, attending a group meeting or paying bills on time, my planner has got me covered.
4. Be present
Living in a metropolitan city makes it hard to slow down and smell the roses. It’s difficult to not be impacted by the fast paced “GO GO GO” mentality of the city. With the struggle of trying to balance never ending priorities, it’s even more important to try to be present. I’m trying get rid of the habit of always checking my phone while I’m waiting in line or in an elevator. Sometimes something as simple as simply waiting in line or just noticing your surroundings can make you feel like time has slowed down.
5. Stick to a schedule
The key to staying on top of work and study commitments is to plan out the week beforehand. Being strapped for time means having to be more stringent on sticking to a schedule. This means going home to study for 3 hours instead of having unplanned after work drinks with colleagues. It sounds stiff, but it’ll actually allow you to schedule more weekly outings and date nights. Remember to stick to a study schedule so you don’t have to use sick/vacation days to catch up on work closer to the deadline.
6. Self care is so important!
This is something I struggle with everyday. My self care routine has taken a big hit ever since I started school again. Whether it’s feeling lazy to do my skin care routine at night, eating fast foods, or not taking some time for myself to paint my nails has slowly started to take a toll on me. I’ve been on and off in my self care routine but I’m still working on mastering this! It is so important to remember to take care of yourself in the process. It’s tempting to make an excuse like “I’m too tired” or to continue working but taking one hour to take care of yourself once a week can make a massive difference. It’ll make you feel more rested, efficient and content for the week ahead.
7. Everything will not be perfect, and that’s okay
Growing up, I think everyone has daydreams of how they’d like their future everyday life to be. We picture a beautifully decorated house that’s always clean. We’ll always have delicious hot foods prepared after work and have all the time in the world to accommodate friends, family, hobbies, work and a love life. I used to be a perfectionist and would bother me if something wasn’t how I’d picture it. But now, I’ve adjusted my expectations to be more realistic of my schedule. Sometimes the house will not be perfectly clean, sometimes my fridge won’t have food and sometimes I’ll forget to take out the trash that week. I’ve learned not to be too hard on myself about these things and to shift my focus on accomplishing big tasks and managing everything at a realistic pace for my lifestyle.
8. Don’t forget to have a bit of a social life
Last but not least, don’t forget to make time for your hobbies and friends. As understanding as our friends and our hobbies may be, sometimes you need to dedicate that time for yourself. Sometimes, we think we’re too busy that we don’t have time to grab a quick bite with a friend. Similar to self care, you don’t realize how important these things are until you actually do it! It makes you feel more relaxed, more content and more connected to your life.
To save time, I’ve been picking out all my outfits for the week, every weekend. It helps save time in every morning and makes me feel confident because I’ll always like my outfit everyday! Here is one outfit I wore to work this past week. I like mixing fun patterns with textures and I love how autumn friendly these colours are! I hope you find these tips helpful! How do you deal with multitasking in your life? I’d love to hear your tips in the comments below!
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Blouse – H&M (old) – similar
Vest – DYNAMITE (old) – similar
Skirt – DYNAMITE (old) – similar
Heels – PAYLESS SHOES
Purse – INDIGO