A Day in the Life (Student Edition)

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Welcome Back Hazards. Recently a lot of the blog posts have been focusing on real life issues. And so todays will be slightly different. Todays post is going to share my daily routine during the university term. Presented in the form of a day in the life (student edition) to highlight how I have reached this point. Life is stressful enough without University adding to it and so I developed this routine to help myself limit stress. For how I managed to limit stress in my childhood I’d suggest reading my most recent post. So without further ado let’s get into the boring stuff before I share my own personal daily routine. Sharing a day in the life (Student Edition) I just want to highlight that everyone is different. And so just because this routine works for me it may not work for yourself.

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For those who are new to my blog, I am not a typical University Student. You see my university is all based online and I do the degree study in my own free time. I have been doing my degree for 5 years and just started my final year last week. However, it wasn’t until a few years ago that I developed my final study routine. For more information about my University head over here! But before we get into how I developed my daily routine and what it is. I would first like to discuss what a daily routine is and how they have helped my life for the better. This will be through discussing how I created my very first daily routine and what the pros and cons were of this routine.

Creating my very first daily routine for a day in the life (student edition)

Since starting my university degree I have always had some kind of routine in place. At first due to the limited amount of time I had for study I would create my routine on a day to day basis. However, I soon realised that not having a consistent routine in place just wasn’t working for me. Back then I would make my to-do-list each day after coming home from a long day of work. It’s safe to say with being so tired all of the time I just wasn’t being productive. Well… as productive as I could have been. Luckily though it’s common knowledge that the grades in the first year of degrees don’t affect the overall grade. Even so thinking back now I definitely could have done better during my first two years of my degree.

I can’t personally remember a time in my adult life that I haven’t had some kind of routine in place. But I know that they have definitely changed over the years to make things easier on me as situations change in my life. I won’t go into what my life used to be like at the start of my degree. That is because I have already covered it in this post. But to make things easier let me share what my routine used to be like on a daily basis. You will notice that it doesn’t just include my university studies but everything I needed to do in my life back then too. This I think was what the issue was I was trying to be super human and not taking care of myself along the way.

My first ever daily routine

06:00 AM: Wake up
07:15 AM: Get the bus to Job 1
08:00 AM: Start work
12:30 PM: Lunch Break where I would do some university study
01:00 PM: Back to work
04:30 PM:
Finish Job 1 for the day
05:30 PM:
Start Job 2 for the day
11:00 PM:
Finish Job 2 for the day
11:30 PM: Have my dinner
12:00 AM: Do an hour of University study
01:00 AM: Bedtime

So you see back at the start of everything I didn’t get any free time to myself. This would cause me to stress out a lot more than I usually do. And over the next few years I would truly start to think about myself. At first I felt extremely selfish for looking after myself, however, over the years I have realised that I was no good to anyone back then. And so, during the summer period between my first and second year of University I sat down with myself and looked at my personal priorities.

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My current daily routine

Due to my daily life being so unexpected, I have learned not to rely so much on a set schedule. After my father was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease back in 2019 I had to learn to adapt my daily life. With my father’s condition being very unreliable I had to be able to begin incorporating a state of flexibility in my daily routine. And that was what I spent time to develop especially over the past few years as his disease started to slowly progress. I moved from full time work to part time freeing up more time in my schedule to be able to do this. And although I am far from comfortable with not having a set schedule I know it is only temporary to get me through the rest of my studies.

Although I really dislike how I don’t know each day how much time I have to spend on certain tasks. The lack of actual set scheduling gives me the freedom to spend more time with my family and friends when I need to. I also no longer have to worry about having a set time to wake up and go to sleep each day. I found that since starting this new routine I have had more energy than previous. Whether this be because I am able to sleep for as long as my body needs, however, I am unsure. I have also found that my stress levels have been lower as well due to the fact that if something crops up I am able to tend to it. Instead of having to set aside more time to get even the most basic living needs done.

How bullet journaling made a day in the life more organised for me…

Adapting to having flexibility in my life was definitely not the easiest transition. For as long as I can remember I always had some sense of schedule in place from my time in education to work. And so having the extra freedom each day was difficult to adjust to at first. However, towards the end of 2019 I came across bullet journaling. And since that moment my life has definitely been more organised than even being scheduled. For those who aren’t sure what this bullet journaling thing is let me shed some light for you all. Bullet Journaling is a simple organisation technique that has no set technique. This means that you can adjust it to be the best method for you personally. And for me I tend to use a simple system that includes the following:

1. Yearly Plan: This will list all the important dates I need to remember from deadlines to birthdays and special events.
2. Yearly Theme: Each year I will choose a theme that I want to focus on (this year is peace).
3. Trackers: This area will track things I want to do such as films I want to watch and my mood each day.
4. Monthly Plan: This will list all the important dates and goals I have for each month
5. Daily Plan: Each evening I will sit down and plan out my goals with what I want to get done the following day.

And now that I have shared how I personally plan out my day and a brief method behind it. I would like to go into the top 10 things that I think are vital to having a successful daily routine.

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10 things to help you make a successful daily routine…

1. Decide what needs to be in your routine

The first thing that I would suggest that you do is look at your priorities. The life of every adult is always filled with limited time. But if you take some time to look over what you have going on in your life. List these items and then review them numbering them by what are most important for you. Once you have done this it is easier to think over what you want to prioritise in your life to make it a better place. Think of what you enjoy. What you have to do. Do you have a family to care for? Do you have a job? List everything that you can and prioritise, prioritise, prioritise.

2. Set small goals that you can work on in a day in a life

Once you have prioritised what needs to be in your life and routine its time to start setting small goals. I have a whole post on goal setting and how I successfully set goals. I won’t go into how to set goals but I suggest setting small goals that you want your routine to do. However, I will share an example of this by sharing my own goal for my routine. I only had one goal which was to achieve a flexible routine that gave me enough time to get everything I need to done.

3. Layout your plan

Now that you’ve set out your goals and priorities it’s time to start working on your plan. To do this I tend to list off everything that I would like my routine to include. After doing this I will go on to write more about why and how to achieve these in detail. I find that by doing this it is easier to start laying out my plan as it has everything I need to know already. And so a day or so after completing step one and two I will start to develop a layout of my plan. I split a piece of paper into three sections. Morning, Afternoon and Evening. I do this so I am able to keep things separate and organised in case I need to change my routine later down the line. In each section I will list what I want to do in brief.

4. Be consistent with your time

You’re probably thinking.. Kirby how the heck can you be consistent with my time? When I first started I felt this way too. However, I took the time whilst developing my routines to review what time I actually have spare. By considering what time you have free each day outside of commitments you’re on the road to consistency. Say you have 5 hours each day that you don’t have commitments to do. Focus your routine around that specific time. That way when you begin your routine it will be easier to adjust and stay consistent. You won’t have to worry about things you have going on overlapping with what you need to do for yourself.

It’s vital to remember that a routine should be about you and nobody else. It’s easier said than done trust me I know but by taking this time to focus on yourself then you will be able to be your best self for others.

5. Be prepared for challenges in the road

With any change in life you will always come across challenges. Sadly it’s part of human nature but it is normal remember that. If you have never had a daily routine before it may be especially hard to continue on when things get hard. I myself have experienced this recently with an issue that has been occurring in my life where I have found it hard to continue blogging. But after taking a week off for my own mental health I pushed through and wrote this post for release. So remember that every challenge is meant to test you. But don’t give up because you’re never alone in this and push through to achieve what YOU want for YOUR life. People are always willing to comment on the things that they don’t understand but you know what is best for you. So be prepared for these comments and challenges.

Now that we are halfway there you maybe feeling a little overwhelmed. And so I would like to provide you with one of my favourite tracks that I use to help me relax. Take a few minutes to yourself, grab a drink and just sit back, relax and breathe.

Feeling better?

6. Review your routine on a day in your life

When you have started your routine it is important to review it often. I tend to review my own routine about once a month. By reviewing your routine you can see if it is working on making your life better. Or you can even review it to see if you need to adjust it as something new has come into your life. I tend to do this by asking myself a set of questions. These questions include how I feel, do I feel like I am being as productive as I can be. Do I need to set more time aside for a specific thing like University. Anything that you think can benefit from will work as everyone is different. So find the best way for you to review your routine.

7. Track the progress towards the goals that you have set

With a routine as mentioned previously you should ultimately have set goals of what you want the routine to do. Check in with these goals often to see how much progress you’ve made to achieving these goals. I tend personally to track my process whenever I conduct my reviews to have it all done at the same time. That way I find it works easier for me. So track your progress as much as you feel the need to and adjust your routine to keep you on track to success.

8. Make it fun where you can

This tip is one of the most important to me. Routines are supposed to be set to help make life a little less stressful and a little more fun to be alive. So make sure that you set aside time within your routine to enjoy the fun in life. Whether it be something small like setting aside an hour a week to read it helps make the difference. I have found that by setting up time to do things you enjoy in your routine really helps to maintain it. For me I set aside an hour a day to read or spend time watching something I enjoy. And I also visit a local coffee shop with my mum once a week. I do this by giving myself a bit of freetime to do self care each day.

9. Reward yourself every day in your life

Another way that I find I can make my routine more fun is to reward myself. I tend to do this each and every day in different ways. But I will only reward myself if I have completed at least half of what I planned to get done that day. This could be as simple as taking an hour to yourself to enjoy a long soak in the bath or even buying yourself a treat. Today for me, I managed to get half done before the afternoon and so I decided to get myself a nice pumpkin spice latte as a reward before writing this post. So remember to reward yourself often for sticking to your routine as it gives you a reason to continue.

10. Make the routine about YOU

The most important thing to remember when making and having a routine is that it is to make YOUR life better. It isn’t about what everyone else wants or expects from you. People are quick to judge and comment on other peoples lives but noone knows the life you lead better than you. You know what you truly want and don’t want. So don’t ever let others change that. Make the routine truly to make your own life better as that way you will find your best self. And by finding your best self it will be better for those around you.

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

And now that you’re aware of how having a routine has helped change my life for the better. You should be ready to make your own routine if you wish to. If you liked today’s post please like, share with a friend or even join my email list.

Until next time, Bye guys!

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