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The Social Balance

Hey MC Scholars! Happy New Year and welcome back to another semester.

I know winter break was awesome for most of us and getting reacclimated to school is the hardest part of Spring Semester. In the past upon signing up for classes, all I could think about was how much free time I was going to lose. I’d like to think of myself as a social butterfly. So what about friends? When would we ever hang out? What about my TV shows? How would I ever keep up with This Is Us or How to Get Away With Murder? Will I ever make another happy hour at Friday’s when I have all of this homework? It’s stressful to think about how one can manage being a full-time student and still have a life. Thankfully I have some tips that will guide you on your way of managing the best of both worlds!


Your Syllabus + Your Planner= 1: What does this mean? After the first week of the semester commences, I like to take all of my syllabi from each class I’m taking and fill my monthly and weekly calendar at a glance with all the important dates for quizzes, tests, due assignments and projects. The benefit to this tip is you get to see exactly when everything is due, which can help you map out when you need to study or when you will have a homework filled day or weekend. In addition to this, you’ll also be able to see your actual FREE TIME! This will guide you right to my next tip…

Plan Social Events Ahead: Now that you can see all your free evenings and weekends for the semester, you can work around your important school dates. Take for example this: My best friends birthday falls on a weekend in February. Now that I know this, I can make the decision to complete most of my tasks early on in the week so that my weekend is free for any potential birthday plans! Another personal thing I do is reach out to all of my friends and family to compare schedules. Most of the people around me live equally busy lives, so finding hangout dates that work for the both of us early on keeps our relationships strong, and keeps me on top of my school tasks.

Record. Record. Record.: I never ever ever ever ever ever EVER have time to watch TV during the week, which sucks because I love the shows I have in my roster. However, I still manage to watch all of my shows and keep up with all the OMG moments of the season! How do I do this? By recording all of my shows on my DVR and waiting until the weekend to indulge in a full out binge watch! Now I know everyone doesn’t have the option to record a series from their TV. You can also take advantage of the On Demand feature which usually has recordings of your favorite highly watched television series. Applications like Hulu, which stream current television series by the episode, is also a good way to keep up without having to dedicate time to the shows usual showtime. If by chance none of these options work or can apply to you, a simple google search of “Show Title Season __ Episode __” will always get you somewhere.

Whatever You Do… DO NOT PROCRASTINATE: I always find it best to do an assignment the same day it has been assigned (or at least start). It brings so much ease to my life. If you wait for your work to pile up and decide to complete it the very last minute, you may never be able to find time for fun and social activities. I tend to start assignments in between classes to cut down on work time for  when I get home. I always try to make my assignments a duel activity as well. So during breakfast, lunch or dinner, my pen and paper are right by my side as well. On the bus ride, I look over the assigned reading. Fit it in wherever you can, if you can.


Your Social Life Is Important: By nature human beings are social. We are raised and brought up to converse, engage, and as children are experts in our cultivated versions of fun. So our social life plays a large role in our life and on our mental health. Consider what you would be like without your family or friends to vent to or hang out with? What would you do if you got home, kicked your shoes off but was unable to relax with a few episodes of your favorite show or without the ability to check your social media accounts? What if you could never go to your favorite social club or suddenly couldn’t play your favorite sport? Without these positive outlets, our minds and bodies would be in shambles. So never neglect this aspect of your life. It’s just as important as any other part of your life.

College Is Only 2-4 Years: Although your social life is important, PRIORITIZE! College is only 2-4 years! So while you’re working on getting your degree, keep in mind that you’ll have the rest of your life to socialize with family and friends. Some events you’ll have to miss, and some shows you’ll just have to record and watch later (even if later is the end of the semester LOL). But once college is over with, you will have your degree, be able to start your career, gain a healthy income, and THEN you can party like its 99!


Until next time MC readers!

Naomi Graham-Stanford

I am currently 21 years old and a born and raised (and proud) Washingtonian. My parents both came to the United States as foreigners from Panamá City, Panamá so I ethnically (and also proudly) identify as Latin-Caribbean. I am in my second semester at Montgomery College at the Takoma Park Silver Spring campus. I plan to obtain my associates in Business Administration and go on to complete my bachelors at Howard University with a double major in Business Marketing and Computer Information Systems. In addition to being a super involved student of Montgomery College, I am also a supermom to the most amazing 3 year old girl on the planet. My ultimate goal in life is to become an internationally renowned event planning mogul.

I originally began writing at the tender age of eight. Back when I thought I was destined to be the next Beyoncé, I would write songs with friends and rehearse and perform them in elementary school. Around middle school, I matured and my writing did as well. I took on poetry as a hobby and later it would bring me Literary Love Poetry Awards that I still have medals for to this day. As I excelled into high school, I didn’t realize how much the assigned papers and controversial group discussions would shape me as the “realist” writer that I am today. I know Montgomery College has the power to take my writing skills to the next level, starting with this blog.

This Post Has One Comment
  1. Naomi – this was a great, thorough post. I don’t know how you do all you students do – I didn’t know what happy hour was once I had kids! Kids – free time – an oxymoron!! But, I agree balance is a good thing. You are very organized and this will serve you well. I like your idea to record TV shows for down time…..wonder if Hulu will make DVR’s extinct. That was a great hint to go for past TV series there – I never did hook my DVR up as I don’t watch TV much anyway. And last, as you say, college is 2-4 years. One needs to focus and keep their eye on the prize. It’s expensive and should come before ‘fun’. Oh well! That degree will serve much much longer and better than a social.

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