4 Ways to Actually Succeed as a Student When You're Also a Parent
Parenting is tough. That’s the understatement of the century…
Now let’s combine that with studying to follow your dreams and prove to yourself and your children the truly inspirational example you know yourself to be.
I know you; staying up at night dreaming of chasing your dreams to help people through massage therapy but dreading the failure you think you’ll find if you try to do it and manage being a parent at the same time.
The truth is honey, people do it every. darn. day. And you can too.
Yes, you can study massage therapy and still be a good parent.
We aren’t going to sit hear and fill your ears with fluff. It will be hard. It will be challenging. There will be nights you cry yourself to sleep… but don’t we, as parents, do that anyway, with or without study?!
So many of our students, past and present have finished well while being a parent and we want to give you some advice and tips to help you do the same.
‘Cause, you know what? We believe in you.
How to Balance Studying and Parenting
1. You Need a calendar
You already juggle a million things, and when you add study into the mix, there will be times you feel overwhelmed and forget important dates. Get a good-size calendar, and plot in the following things:
Exam dates and times
You don’t have to create a huge table and stick it to your wall. Alternatively, there’s this amazing thing called a smartphone that fits right into your pocket so that it can be readily available at all times.
Technology has made our lives much easier. Use an app to create your calendar. Whatever you choose, make a point of creating a habit to reference that calendar ALL THE TIME.
Trust us, it will make your life so much easier.
2. Use Every Time-Saving Idea You Can Find
As a parent, it’s inevitable that you’ll be juggling too much. Remind yourself that this chaos is only for a time and schedule in moments of relaxation to stop the anxiety from getting the best of you.
Then, use these tested tricks to save time in other areas of your life.
Cook during the weekends. Freeze the food and use it throughout the week.
Make use of public transport instead of driving. On the bus, you can study and even answer your emails.
Try to outsource as much as possible, whether that’s lawn care, house cleaning or child care every once in a while. I hear grandparents have great rates!
3. Use Wellington’s Student Services
If you find yourself unsure of a technique or idea, GET HELP! Don’t try to do it alone or shy away fom asking for help. It will only cause you time and grief in the long run.
Our staff and instructors want to help you. We want to see you succeed. Even if it doesn’t feel like we’re on your side, we are.
Some of the student services we offer are:
One on one instructor meetings
Learning Disability Resources
Our staff also have families of their own and know what it’s like to be in your shoes. They’ll do what they can to help you get through your challenges and feel empowered.
4. Take Care of Yourself
As parents, we have an innate way of putting ourselves last. We think we are doing the world a favour by showing how much we love our children by giving them their hearts desires and putting ourselves through the ringer. But the best thing we can do is to make ourselves healthy and in turn nurture healthy kids.
Here are some tips that you can use:
Never skip your breakfast. Your mama was right, it is the most important meal of the day and you need that energy to get started on the right foot. No, leftover brownies from last night doesn’t count.
Get a massage. What a novel idea! And guess what, massages come for free when you swap one with your classmate! Students are more than welcome to use any of our practical rooms to practice their massage techniques and give treatments while the rooms are not in use for class. Take advantage of that fact during your lunch break or spares.
Do not forget about physical activity. As a student we can spend way too much time infront of the computer. Take a break every half hour to stand up and stretch. Something that simple will really make a difference to your body.
Avoid ignoring your social life.
Last year my husband and I had about 20 people over to celebrate New Year’s Eve. Everyone came for dinner and shouted the countdown together as we welcomed in the New Year. As the last people left our home, I looked down at my watch. It was 7:30pm. Yep, you guessed it, we all had kids.
Your social life may look a little different than it did ten years ago, but its’s still important. Taking time to get out of isolation, talk with adults and share your experiences. It’s an important part of being a human. Even a parent-human. Do it.
Enjoy a hobby. Remember that thing you used to do for fun? You should try doing it again. It’ll still be fun!
Do not forget to sleep enough. People without kids think that they start sleeping through the night after six months. Ha! We know you probably won’t get a good night’s sleep until your kids have left for college, so take advantage of daytime naps, early bedtimes and don’t feel guilty about it. Just don’t fall asleep in class…
If you’ve made it this far in the article, your kids must already be sleeping. And in that case, go to sleep!
If you want a few more minutes to relax, take a watch of this sweet video we made where we interviewed one of our superstar-mom-students and asked her about parenting as a student.