Taking the crucial decision of beginning or returning to school can be an extremely tricky one, especially if you are a parent. Being a parent and taking care of your spouse and kids is already a full-time job. Add the burden of studies to it, and everything will surely end up in disaster. However, instead of being scared of managing a family with your homework, you should think about its long-term benefits.
From higher paying job titles to better employment opportunities to advance your professional skills, the endgame is far better than what you might consider it to be. Who knows, you might learn something at school that will help you balance your home with your study life more efficiently. Long story short, the endgame of studying while being a parent will outweigh its short-term struggles.
In order to help you get through school, listed below are some hacks that will help parents ace their academic life without ever having to worry about dropping out.
Develop A Weekly Schedule
Parents are already experts at multitasking and scheduling. Picking up and dropping off their kids to school or taking them to the doctor- it’s all in a busy day’s work! However, now you should think about applying these skills to your academic life. An excellent place to start is by writing down your schedule in a diary, an online or paper-based one. It doesn’t matter. As long as you remember when you have to work on your algebra or attend a family dinner, it’s all fine!
Just ensure that you put all your crucial deadlines in your diary, so you don’t get bombarded by other appointments suddenly. Moreover, if you have issues organizing things, you can enroll yourself in an online leadership degree. It will be like catching two fishes with one hook – enhanced self-management and preparing for a top-tier leadership job!
Time Management Is Crucial
When it comes to parenting and studying at the same time, organization and time management is vital. There are only twenty-four in a day, and every second is valuable. If it is possible, try to outsource your everyday household chores whenever you can.
Things such as ordering groceries online, dropping kids off at school, and sharing carpool responsibilities are examples of everyday chores you can outsource to maximize your time. Another example is breaking down your duties into bite-sized achievements. It will help you complete them without getting pressed for time.
Be At Your ‘Happy Place’
Every human being works differently. Some require total isolation while listening to their favorite tunes and study. Every person has their own biological rhythm that makes them less or more productive at a particular time of the day. Identifying the environment and time of the day that works for you will skyrocket your productivity levels. Some simple tricks you can experiment with are;
- Surrounding yourself with items that motivate you
- Letting in tons of natural light
- Removing distractions from your place of study
- Placing some greenery on your study desk
If you cannot study at home, consider getting a membership for your local library or visit a nearby cafe. It will be the perfect spot for you to enjoy some solace and study in peace.
Apply For Financial Aid Or Scholarships
Every year, schools, colleges, and universities award more than 7.4 billion dollars’ worth of scholarships and other financial aid. A scholarship can provide any student with financial stability, which means they no longer have to work stressful hours to support themself and their families. Not to mention- they can focus their entire energy on studying rather than working extra hours to pay for tuition.
Think of it like this- a couple of hours spent on filling a scholarship application form can allow you to slash thousands of dollars on your tuition fee in the long run.
Do Your Research
Certain universities and degree programs are friendlier to students who are parents than others. Conduct some research and look for online degree programs or universities that offer part-time, night, or weekend classes. The more your study program’s flexibility, the easier it will be for you to work around family commitments or conflicts.
Perform an online search for programs that accommodate adult students and are willing to work according to their schedules instead of feeding a typical studying schedule down their throats.
Ask For Help When You Need It
Balancing your home and study life is a difficult juggling act already, especially for parents. One of the best resources you can find is a support system. Ensure that your employer, extended family, friends, or spouse are backing you one hundred percent. Don’t be scared to ask for their help whenever you feel stuck. Often, the thing you are searching for the most will be right in front of you.
The ones close to you will always be proud of what you are doing, i.e., studying while being a parent, and will jump in whenever you need help to reach your goals.
Most parents will feel a pang of guilt inside them when they give time to their studies. They think that the time they spend acquiring an education holds less value than time spent with the family. It comes naturally. However, remember, those who love you will always want to see you succeed in life. They will understand if your studies are vital for you. Not to mention, acquiring an education will help you further your career, which will benefit your entire family.