Unlike a lot of my friends, I am fortunate to know my schedule for the coming school year. With September fast approaching, I’ve started to consider how I am going to use my down time in between/outside of classes. I imagine that it will go something like this:
Monday: In my first semester I have a 7-hour break between my morning classes and my evening Film Studies course, which leaves plenty of room for productivity. This will be the day that I take full advantage of everything I’ve been pushing on you, the readers, to do since last fall. The list starts with going to the gym, which is free with most schools. I’m sure I’ll take some sort of class or maybe work out in the weight room. This will be followed by a healthy, homemade lunch. No sense in spending money where you don’t have to! I’m positive that I’ll spend the remainder of my time working diligently in the school library. Day very well spent.
Tuesday: Tuesday is another busy day, with a 3-hour break. I’ll only have time for lunch and more work in the library.
Wednesday: First semester I have Wednesday off. I’ll probably use this day to work a 5- to 8-hour shift and then spend the rest of the day catching up on reading, like a good student should.
Thursday: I pretty much have class all day long on Thursdays. This means I’ll have to do my reading in the morning and then start on my work from the day in the evening.
Friday: Everybody knows that having Fridays off is essential for a successful year. Not because you’ll be routinely hungover—no, of course not. Fridays are used to review everything you learned in the previous 4 days, but you already knew that!
But all that is just what I imagine will happen. In reality, my average week is probably going to go like this:
Monday: I’ll attempt to wake myself up during my morning history lecture. I will be assisted by my peers, some of whom I have already granted permission to throw things at me in an attempt to prevent me from dozing off in the first place. This will probably be followed by a hunt for coffee. Seeing as how I do actually have a 7-hour break, I will honestly be looking into what extracurricular classes are available to me, as well as clubs and the like. Lunch will probably not be homemade. Are you kidding me? Waking up is hard enough without the daunting task of preparing food at 6 in the morning. Library time will then be used to catch up on the sleep I missed in my morning classes, because honestly, it’s Monday and I’m going to be tired.
Tuesday: A 3-hour break is nowhere near enough time to get any serious work done. With my high level of skill in procrastination, I’ll probably get in the equivalent of 15 minutes’ worth of studying. No sense in wasting my time trying to achieve such poor results. Therefore, Tuesday is social day.
Wednesday: Who wants to work when you can sleep? Class readings? I have time to do those on the weekend!
Thursday: More sleeping in. Class doesn’t start until 10! Keep hitting that snooze button!
Friday: Thirsty Thursdays. Need I say more?
OK… so maybe neither of these schedules is very plausible. If I’ve learned anything from my time in school, it’s that you need a balance. Being in post-secondary does not mean that you need to work yourself into the ground. At the same time, it does not mean “time to slack off since no one is paying attention” (or so you think). University and college are both an educational experience and a social/life experience. The time you spend over the next 4 years will shape you into your future self—for better or for worse. Scary thought, eh?
It’s actually quite difficult to plan ahead like this, anyway. You probably won’t have any idea what your days will be like until at least the second week of classes—probably even later. No matter what happens, though, make sure you find your balance!
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