Re-integrating back to school, and balancing work with the CCP

“How do I balance school, and my work study?”

When I first started my work study position at the Centre for Community Partnerships (CCP), I found myself pondering over this question. The answer? Well, there are many! Addressing the solutions of how to manage the demands of both work and school-life are always evolving.

Fortunately, as I reach the four-month mark of my work with the CCP, I have learned a couple of strategies that have greatly aided the productivity and success of my work. Today, I will share my key three tips for effectively mitigating between work and school-life.

#1: Setting Goals with the CCP

Here at the CCP, work study students are divided into teams to focus on specific tasks. There is always something happening - from working our Community Action Groups Program to facilitating Social Action Pop-Up Days - that it is easy to feel overwhelmed by the amount of tasks that still need to be completed. 

Fortunately at the CCP, our work team prioritizes goal setting as an avenue to continued success. I find goal setting with my supervisor helpful, as I am able to gain support in cultivating both my short-term and long-term goals, in terms of what I would like to achieve in the work environment! As a result, I’ve started applying short-term goal setting at the beginning of every week, and long-term goal setting at the start of each month. One example of this is breaking down my work-related goals at the beginning of the week into smaller tasks to complete each day. That way as I start your new work and school week, I am able to be guided by the main priorities I have set myself up to achieve.

#2: Creating a Schedule

It is so easy to believe that our schedule must be fixed. Unfortunately, this can oftentimes lead to feelings of disappointment when we cannot tick everything off our checklist for the day. 

If there is one lesson my work study position has taught me above all, it is that you must allow yourself to be an adaptable individual, in accordance with having a flexible schedule. Events and tasks are constantly changing. In line with creating goals, dividing up large tasks into smaller ones that can be completed throughout the week, is definitely the pathway to success.

Image of a bed

#3: Take breaks

Take breaks. A LOT of them. In the current environment we are in, stress is a common occurrence, which can be emphasized by the amount of work we must complete. Instead of focusing on working, without any room for taking breaks (as I’ve often done) - I’ve learned that taking short fifteen-minute intervals to listen to music, or just do something for myself, really boosts my motivation and productivity. Whether it is related to a work endeavour or a school assignment, breaks are your best friend!

Lastly, feelings of loneliness are not immune to all of us. I would encourage you all to remember that while navigating schoolwork and a work-study position can be daunting, you can truly find immense support in this environment. Personally, I am fortunate to be reassured by the wonderful pillars of strength in my colleagues, and in my school-life, supported by my teachers as well. So please know that you have a support system in the form of your colleagues, professors and teams. And as always - I’m rooting for you, as well!

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