You might think my life is hectic. Sometimes it can be but I try to manage my time as best as I can so stop feeling overwhelmed. I work full time on a weird shift pattern which means one week I spend a total of 5 x 12 hour days at work and the other 2. I changed onto the shift because I knew it would give me more days off to do things I want and to do my Open University work.
I’m in my third year of six of part time distance learning and have learnt the hard way that I must manage my time. I used to leave my assignments until the last week or two and hand them in incomplete. This may have been OK for level one where none of it counts towards your degree and you just need to get 40% to continue. This year it’s different. This post applies to not only those who study at home but those who work at home – I blog now too!
Plan your time
This may sound like a boring point but it is the most important one. In your planner/diary record when you are going to do what. I have to study a certain amount a week so I break it down into smaller sections and write them in my planner. When an assignment hand in date is coming up I write down when I am going to do each question. I sometimes can allow myself to do a question in a morning so if I finish early then I can check it and then either start something sooner or spend the rest of the time doing something else. That way it gets done and I won’t be worrying about getting it done. So no worry and no stress. Yay! Oh and don’t forget to schedule breaks – tea breaks and half an hour for lunch.
Get ready in the morning
Plan into your schedule what time you will start working. Getting it done in the morning is a great way to go. Get up as soon as your alarm clock goes off, make your bed and get ready within an hour. Don’t laze about – you can do that once the work is done. Treat the day as if you have a workplace to go to and you don’t want to be late! Make it a priority in the morning to get dressed and do your hair as if you are going to work. This will make you feel more motivated.
Put your work before anything else
Again, treat the work as if it was at a workplace with a boss who would not be happy if you slacked. Prioritise it and make it more important that doing the housework or going shopping. This year I have said no to any overtime at work because I need my free time to do my uni work.
When I’m having a bad day at work I like to think about going home or having a day off and thinking about what I am going to do with this time. I might think about getting home and getting in a hot relaxing bath or going to yoga class or watching a TV show on Netflix or Amazon Prime. I’m sure you’ve all done it. I find that when you are working at home you don’t feel this way as much because you are already in the comfort of your own home. However, seeing as you’ve planned your day you know that you can quit working as soon as you’ve got done what you wanted or as soon as the time is up so think about that end goal and reward yourself afterwards.
Tidy your house/work space
As a person who has hates tidying up, I now see the point in it. When your space is tidy your mind is clearer and you work better. Before you start working make sure that your space is tidy and uncluttered. You will be amazed at the difference in how you feel and will be more motivated to work.
Enjoy the benefits
I find completing the uni work I need to and completing an assignment is an accomplishment in it’s own right. When a day at work is over I rarely feel accomplished – it’s more relief to get home. I love learning and I am looking forward to gaining my qualification. I’m doing something that I’ve always wanted to do – whilst being able to earn a living. If you earn your living from home you are very lucky that you get to spend time in your space and have the freedom that comes with this so enjoy it.