Look back at your 168 hours a week. What week of the 15-week semester is it now?

What has become routine? When do you regularly sit down and work at learning? Is every day different? Are you feeling anxious?

Creating a routine, so that you know you are sitting in your study location between the hours of X and Y, and you know what you are doing to learn, can help you reduce anxiety.

What physical space have you decided is your own, at least for dedicated periods of time? What is the noise level? What provides comfort, or conversely, some level of discomfort to maintain focus?

Noise is an interesting factor. If a task is especially difficult, the least noise possible allows you to concentrate fully. If a task is relatively easy, noise may seem to help you concentrate. The subway or bus ride may seem to be the only location where you feel you have dedicated time for doing homework problems or reading.  Search for and find a spot on campus that affords you a better location for more intense work. The more creative the work, the more quiet is needed. This will allow you to “hear your thinking.” You may be surprised by your own thoughts!

What your dedicated space and time provide is the opportunity for the state of “flow” where one gets absorbed in the task. Set your timer: you may find that those 25-minute sessions are extended to longer periods because you have become interested in what you are doing. What a gift!

You will find that returning to your designated location at a set time helps you to create a routine, a stable part of your daily activities, and your brain receives a prompt that now is the time for thinking, learning, and creating.

Showing up, for yourself, and getting to work, no matter what else is going on, will support your contract with yourself.

Exercise 2.5: Balancing College and Personal Responsibilities

1. In terms of scheduling your time, how is your City Tech experience different from your previous educational experience? How have you made your college education your new “full-time job”?



2. How do the classwork and assignments that you are working on now compare to schoolwork you had previously?



3. Identify three responsibilities that might create obstacles to your progress in college.




4. What strategies can you use to deal with each of the obstacles listed above? What changes have you made?



Click to download a fillable document: Exercise 2.5: Balancing College And Personal Responsibilities



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The Companion for the First Year at City Tech Copyright © by Office of First Year Programs is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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