Have you considered training for a new career but are concerned about finding the time to fit learning into your schedule? If you already have other commitments (job, family, home, etc.), even thinking about finding the time to go to school can create a sense of panic! Before you put your dreams aside, take a deep breath and explore various ways to “find time” in your day for learning.
If you’re like me, days seem to fly by. How many times have we ended the day wondering where all the hours went? Creating a time log can help uncover the mystery! Try keeping a diary for one week and tracking where your time is spent. You may be surprised at how much time you spend surfing the internet or getting lost on Pinterest! Look for potential “learning” times in your schedule and get creative. Perhaps you commute via public transportation? Use this time to study! Or, wake up an hour earlier each day to tackle schoolwork. Taking a longer lunch hour may also free up time during the day to apply to your education.
Now that you’ve found the time, follow these steps to set yourself up for success:
- Be realistic. There will be times when the dishes don’t get done because you have an assignment due. Or times when you must double your study time on a Saturday because you went to the movies with your family during your Friday study time. That’s okay. Breathe. Be flexible.
- Ask for support. Have a family meeting and let everyone know how important this is to you. Assign chores to household members to lighten your duties. Ask a neighbor for help with school drop off and pick up. Look for inexpensive help with the lawn and other outdoor duties for the time being.
- Learn to say “no”. Your time is valuable, and if you treat it as such, others will as well. And if they don’t? A simple “no thank you, I’ve reserved this time for school” should suffice. Being selective with your time will allow you to focus on priority items, including your classes!
- Bring your schoolwork with you. Online courses make this so easy! Whenever you find yourself in between appointments, or waiting for the kids at practice, you can study and complete assignments.
- Schedule study time. Make sure you have reserved time on your calendar for your schoolwork and keep this “appointment” with yourself as you would any other appointment.
- Silence distractions. We’ve all heard the reports that multi-tasking makes us less productive in the long run. Close all apps, windows, and silence your phone during your study time. You’ll accomplish more in less time if you put your whole focus onto the task at hand.
- Take breaks – offline and out in nature. If you can’t get outside, at least get up and stretch; walk around the room, practice deep breathing exercises. You’ll come back refreshed and better able to focus on the task at hand.
- Make sure to schedule free time every week. Your days can’t be all work and no play!
- Above all else, remember why you are doing this. By making your schoolwork a priority, you are one step closer to realizing your career training goals!
Ed4Career understands the way adults want to learn and how they learn the best. We currently offer one of the largest proprietary career vocational certification catalogs available on the market today. Visit us today and get started on the career path of your choice!