Students find new ways to balance time despite the busyness

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Prioritizing can help students escape the stress that comes from a busy schedule

Wake up, get ready, run off to class, then do extracurricular activities and homework. Sleep? That is usually the last thing on the list.

As college students go about living busy lives, it is a wonder how they get all of it done and still find time to sleep. It takes dedication to be disciplined enough to make a crazy schedule work.

One of the ways that busy students can manage a jam-packed schedule is with a day planner. A day planner allows people to write down every task and project they need to complete and also keep it on a timeline that can keep them accountable for deadlines.

“I keep a planner,” said Brooke Conline, junior biology major. “It’s my life.”

Conline said she stays on top of her academically intense major and job by highlighting tasks in different colors based on what is for school and what is for work. It helps her know what she has to do the next day.

For students who have to work and carry a full-time school load, it can be tough to balance everything, often leaving something that cannot be nourished. Jacob Shackelford, senior managing construction major, said he knows about this problem firsthand.

“I live by the college triangle: sleep, good grades, and a social life,” Shackelford said. “You can only pick two.”

Dealing with all the stress is just another task, but it is critical to maintaining proper physical and mental health.

Mayo Clinic states that exercise is a great way to deal with stress. Of course, this is just another unscheduled item, but the benefits of exercise include the release of endorphins, which make the body and mind feel happier after exercise, leading to a better mood overall as well as less stress.

But exactly where does sleep fall into all of this?

It is critical to get enough sleep. For some students, it is a matter of staying out of the hospital.

“I have to get at least eight hours of sleep a night, or my health condition worsens. So I make it a priority,” said Kara Singleton, junior communications major.

Singleton said she  gets incredibly ill from a condition caused by stress, and when she does not get enough hours of sleep, this contributes to her stress levels. Her condition is still being determined, but for now she knows how to prevent it — with a full eight hours of sleep.

Whatever the schedule, make sure to make health a priority. It does not matter what else is on the to-do list. If health is not managed, it can lead to adverse effects that affect critical areas of a student’s schedule.

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