The title sounds like the most self-absorbed thing ever but hear me out, it’s just what literally everyone asks me when they learn what my schedule looks like and… yeah, it’s a pretty wild thing. So, I thought I’d talk about it for a bit especially since I’m on an organisational posts kick and I seem to have worked out a system to balance most aspects of my life. It took me four years haha, but better late than never.
Anyway, I’ll stop rambling and dive straight into it. I’ll tackle every aspect separately and get into the “routine” I’ve figured out for each one of them.
So. This is the biggest one I struggled with, so buckle up, this section will be lengthy. I used to ditch studying in favor of every other thing in my life. I wouldn’t go to lectures (it’s not mandatory) which in on itself isn’t that bad but I wouldn’t study at hom either and would cram all the studying (pretty much discovering everything) the 3 or 4 weeks before my final exams. Not healthy, I know. I would get stressed, anxious and desperate because 1/ I couldn’t see an end to the studying and 2/ wouldn’t leave the house for the whole period. I would not recommend it. Stress also makes me insomniac so i would be sleep deprived on top of it all.
By this time, everyone and their mother knows I’m a medstudent, a 4th year this year which means quite a few things were added to my schedule compared to the past three years.
- First of, I have hospital rotations from 8am to 12pm which possible extension to 1 or 2pm (which doesn’t happen very often but still), then classes from 2pm to 6pm. This was the exact schedule I had last year but it was without the extensions, I had a lot less responsibilities at the hospital AND I didn’t go to class.
- THEN, we actually started learning pathology this year which is learning about all the illnesses and I just can’t afford to cram all that up in a month because 1/ it’s humanly impossible and 2/ it’s the practical stuff I will be using for the rest of my life, so what kind of doctor would I be if I only learnt it for exams?
So what changed now? you ask.
I study everyday
I go to the lectures where professors actually add something to the written material and when I don’t, I study in the school Library til 6:30pm when it closes. Then go over that day’s notes and lectures for a couple hours when I get home (if I’m not too tired, because let’s face it, some days I just drop face down on my bed), that way I’m on top of my classes and I have considerably less to do on the weekend. Then on the weekends I go over the notes from anything I feel like I didn’t absorb well enough. So, basically my studying ends around 9pm on week days . And I take a break from studying on Sunday while I still can because in a month or so that won’t be possible haha.
I have a study group
Well, it’s not exactly a study group, they’re my best friends, my support system AND my study buddies. We’re six people and well… we don’t all study together all the time but there’s always 3 of us at all times. I used to study alone and while I’ll still do that right before exams, studying with other people not only takes the edge off of it because we goof off and talk a little when we start getting tired BUT it also brings new things to perspective. Even when we’re not studying the same subjects at the same time, some bring up questions that others didn’t think of so it gets us thinking and reasoning. There’s also the fact that when going through material for the first time, I am bound to struggle with things so having them around to help and talk things through which does wonders for my studying.
So yeah, I’ve been friends with these people since 1st year but we only started working together this year and it’s doing amazing things for our productivity and motivation. 10/10 would recommend.
I’m sure you’re wondering where the hell I find time to blog when my studying ends at 9pm and I still need to get food in me, do a few other thing before going to sleep to wake up at 6:30. The answer is weekends. Weekends save my blog’s life weekly. I schedule 3 posts, one on Friday, one on Saturday, and one (and sometimes two) on Sunday. And since I was ahead of schedule before school started, I’m basically scheduling posts for 3 weeks ahead, which 1/ takes the pressure off because I know that eventhough I don’t write the three I strive for, I am set for the next week and 2/ One post a day is attainable especially since I only study 5 or 6 hours on Saturday and none -for now- on Sunday.
I also try to answer comments on weekends and get on bloghopping whenever I have down time either before class or when there isn’t much to do in my departement at the hospital. But it’s usually one or two posts at a time. I do a bigger blog-hopping session on Sunday when I feel like it.
Well, not gonna lie, this is where I’m failing a bit. I mainly read at night because there is just no time during the day. I used to read 2 hours during school nights but since I increased my studying time exponentially, I barely have time to read for an hour before I need to sleep.
What I commit to is 2 chapters a day which is pretty doable but I sometimes can’t. When I’m too exhausted, I just don’t do it, because at the end of the day, reading is a hobby. I do feel guilty about it sometimes but I’m mostly doing better than I thought on that front because it’s just not a priority when put up against studying (which I finally realized lol). I’m reading half what I used to read but at least I have a clear conscience and don’t exhaust myself.
This will mostly be bullet points because there are way too many parts of this to get into it all in details and parts of it are more personal than others.
- I spend quality time with my loved ones. I try to go for an hour a night with my mom (and breakfasts), I visit my grandma and extended family a couple times a month since they all live in a city an hour away AND I spend lunch time with my friends (besides the studying time in the afternoon)
- Let’s not forget my online friends with whom I try to catch up a few times a week because they mean as much to me as IRL ones.
- I know when to take a break. I try not to push my limits because that would get me uselessly exhausted way before exam prep period even begins and that’s no good, so if I am really tired, I don’t study when I get home and either go to sleep extra early or do something that doesn’t require as many brain cells.
- I don’t hesitate to cut off things that would add unnecessary stress or would exhaust me further. I sadly gave up on workig out because I’m already running around a hospital 4 hours a day and it’s either I work out or study after class, I can’t do both.
- Keep some sort of journal to help you not only with organization but also with recording your thoughts and pouring out stress. I talked about how I set up my bullet journal a couple weeks ago if you want to check that out as well.
It’s all about balance, doing enough without doing too much. This may sound like a lot to some and too little to others but *I think* it works for me. It’s been a little over a month and so far so good. So, I hope this answers the question haha and that it might spark some kind of schedule idea for some of you who are still struggling to keep up with it all (relatable af) and if it doesn’t, I hope you find something that works for you soon and that you don’t have to give up on anything that’s meaningful to you in the process ❤
That’s it until next time.
Do you have a Schedule worked out for your school life?
What are some tips you have to stay on top of things?
Hope you enjoyed, write to you soon.