Daily Struggle: Re-establishing Work Work Life Balance After Vacation

One of my goals this summer is creating a work work life balance into my daily college life. So far, I feel the two works, college and my jobs, have dominated my life the past few semesters and want to spend more time each day doing something for me.

I have taken steps, to make myself a priority, using the warning signs from my first post. I watch one TV Show each day for an hour, eating dinner with my parents (when I’m not working the night shift) and am enjoying my days more.

Recently, I visited my grandparents for six days, with only doing homework the first two nights. I taught them how to navigate their new computer (a Windows 8) and sit and relax by their pool. I even discovered a new app I love using every day, ROOM For Thought. I had finally felt like I had gotten my desperately needed break.

As soon as I stepped off my plane, an oh sh*t moment arrived. I came home about one week ago. I had an exam in one week that I have not even studied for. I had an exam in two days that I have not completed the work this week for. I had not created documents I said I would put together for my job.

In this moment, I chose to be stressed, instead of riding out my vacation high.

As I tried cramming for my exams and attempted to get everything done, I was unhappy and unsatisfied. And no, that wasn’t just because I couldn’t get everything done. I knew I was heading down a path that I was now aware I didn’t want to go back down. Stressing over a 4.0 is not worth wasting your life away. Coming from a 4.0 student, I do have regrets and coulda/shoulda/wouldas.

Now, I choose to do what I want, within reason and make my life my priority. Like Drake said, “You Only Live Once,” so I might as well spend time with my family and not keep writing.

YOLO reminds me to have work work life balance(source)

3 Signs You Neglect Work Work Life Balance in College

Working outside help me achieve work work life balance

Achieving work work life balance is one of my continuing struggles while I am in college. I tend to overcommit work wise, that’s why there are two—school and job work. Even though I enjoy my work most of the time, I still sometimes feel unsatisfied.

My satisfaction is my wake-up call that I neglect balance in my life.

When I start seeing these three warning signs creep into my daily life, I know I am going back to an unbalanced state of mind.


You eat while you work

I ate EVERY meal these past semesters while working. I updated my sorority’s Facebook page with a fork full of mac n’ cheese. I designed poster layouts with fruit by my side. I even ate my bigger meals during class because I knew that might be the only free moment I had all day.

Since I am home, I make it a point to have dinner with my family. I not only want to spend time with them, but I am sick of cold food. I hope to continue this mealtime with friends when I return to Michigan State this upcoming fall.


No TV time

It doesn’t have to be TV time. This activity should relax you and be something you enjoy. This summer, I will spend my free time watching all eight of my favorite TV shows. Yes, there’s really eight.

My relaxation time is the first thing that goes when I get stressed. I will schedule out both my work times, to ensure it does not conflict with my most favorite two TV shows, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver and Celebrity Family Feud. Luckily for me, each show is on a different weekday night, which will serve as my daily reminder.


Wait, it’s already bedtime?!

This is what I call the Oh Sh*t moment.

Either I get a lot of work done and can’t believe I accomplished everything on my to-do list, or I wanted to get more done than I actually did.

With classes and working four days a week, it’s usually the later.

I realize this is my biggest hurdle this summer. I now know I have to make my personal projects one of my priorities, or else, they will never get done and I will replace the time with something I feel I have to complete.


To check my progress on achieving work work life balance, read the Daily Struggle.