Getting a degree or course certification can play an important role in helping you achieve your career ambitions. However, it’s likely that devoting all your time to studying is not a practical option. You may find that attending traditional schooling while maintaining your work and family life seems overwhelming. The good news is that the digital landscape offers some helpful solutions. You might be able to take on more casual gig work while attending university or take an online course part-time while working full-time. It’s worth considering whether you can combine both tools to get the maximum benefit from each. Let’s dive a little deeper into this concept. Can you do gig work while studying online and what can you do to increase your success?
Recognize the challenges
While it’s perfectly possible to do gig work while studying online, there are some challenges to succeeding. One of the best approaches is to take the time to better understand the cause and impacts of these challenges. This allows you to recognize their presence in your life and reduce any potential negative outcomes. One of the most common challenges of studying while gig working is maintaining your mental wellness. Conditions such as depression, stress, and anxiety can disrupt your ability to work effectively. These can certainly be influenced by a negative workplace. Undue pressure to perform, difficulties with relationships, and taking on too much can lead you to be unwell. It’s important for you to understand what experiences can trigger these feelings and learn to recognize the signs of burnout that can come with an imbalance of work and study.
Another key challenge you may face when studying and gig working is maintaining your motivation. It may feel like there’s not more to your life than doing your coursework and performing your job. You might also think that you’re taking on student debt only to experience relentless work, which can be disheartening. This can lead to you losing sight of what you’re aiming toward—and how the difficulties can have positive outcomes. Unless you can remind yourself of why you’re working and studying, it can be easy to let one or both of them slide.
Aim for balance
In many ways, making gig work and studying online viable is about achieving a balance. This doesn’t mean you split all your time equally between work and school. It also doesn’t mean you can take on as much work or study as possible as long as they’re both well-balanced. Instead, it’s about establishing a sensible and sustainable work-study-life division. The worst thing you can do is improvise your schedule. Every week or month, take some time to review the road ahead. Consider what you can realistically achieve each day in terms of study and work activities. Assess how physically or mentally taxing each task is likely to be. Be reasonable and don’t overload yourself out.
One key thing here is to make sure your personal life is a part of this balance. Isolation and loneliness are common issues for students that also work. Schedule regular breaks for yourself. Get some fresh air and exercise each day. Spend some time with your friends doing activities you enjoy. Even during the holidays when it feels like you should replace your study hours with seasonal work, be kind enough to yourself to make time for fun.
Embrace efficient learning and working practices
Keeping productive without burning out is often a matter of finding ways to be more efficient. You shouldn’t mistake efficiency for an excuse to squeeze in more gigs or coursework time. This can lead to you becoming overtired and negatively impact your work and your studies. Instead, efficiency should allow you to safeguard your rest and fend off any potential exhaustion.
Often, learning online successfully is about good preparation. Before each semester, use your syllabus to understand what is expected from you and what you can expect. This empowers you to arrange key materials for each session and schedule time for your assignments. You can be more efficient by reducing distractions during your lectures and study periods. This includes muting notifications from your phone and social media accounts.
As for your gig work, the best efficiency tools may be those that help you better manage your time. For instance, many gig workers find required administrative work—like invoices and scheduling—both tedious and time-consuming. Look into accountancy software and applications that help you automatically log your time and expenses, send invoices, and complete tax records. There are also mobile apps that help you manage effective to-do lists that keep you on track throughout your working day. When you work gigs on Jobble, your scheduling and invoices are taken care of, so you have more time to focus on what’s important to you.
While studying online and performing gig work is doable, it can be challenging. Understanding the challenges can help you address them effectively. You can maintain a solid work-study-life balance through mindful scheduling. Wherever possible, use tools to reduce unnecessary stress and overworking. By managing yourself and your time, you can find balance and enjoy success in studying and working.
About the Author: Amanda Winstead is a writer from the Portland area with a background in communications and a passion for telling stories. Along with writing she enjoys traveling, reading, working out, and going to concerts. If you want to follow her writing journey, or even just say hi you can find her on Twitter.