Discussion ~ Juggling School and Blogging


This Week's Discussion:
Juggling Blogging and School

We will be talking about how we deal with it, tips, and just the overall constant struggle.


The Struggle:

Dana: I am a freshman in college. THE STRUGGLE IS REAL! To top it all off I commute to school. I am not really complaining about commuting though. I love that I get all of the comforts of home and none of the horribleness of dorming, plus it is a hell of a lot cheaper than dorming in NYC. But it means that some days I am not at home from about 7:30 am to 8:00 pm. By the time I get home I am exhausted and need to eat, shower, get ready for the next day, and sleep. OH wait and do any school work from essays to required reading. So it has definitely been a bit of a struggle to say the least to try to read and blog. I do think I have been doing pretty well with keeping up almost daily posts and not falling behind on my goodreads challenge. I do have to thank Rachel for everything she does because I don't think I have every blogged this consistently ever. 

Rachel: I'm a junior in high school. THE STRUGGLE IS VERY REAL! Junior year is the most important year of high school. It's the hardest year, and I'm taking the most rigorous courses. Also it's the year of testing. I have so many standardized tests to take this year I can hardly keep track of them all! My blog is already suffering because of my lack of time to put towards it, and my reading time is minimal. I just have so much work to do. I come home at 2:30 PM and sit down and do homework. Short breaks for food and water and I should finish homework by 9:00 PM. It hurts. By this point I'm so exhausted that I watch mindless tv, shower, then attempt to read. I usually get 15 pages in before I pass out for the night. Repeat. <---- My struggles. Blogging is basically a luxury that I can sometimes afford on the weekends. 

Naban: First of all, I'm going to go ahead and cheer for myself because I'm having it the easiest over here. (Yay!) Being the youngest here, I'm in my freshman year of high school. I can't say the struggles I have to face at this point are anything major as of now. But the struggle is still there. It's not studying itself which is hard, but having to cope with some major changes: friends, the drama, the work. I was a bit lost, and desperately trying not to fail behind. It's getting better, although I'm still left drained, mostly emotionally and it effects my blog, and my reading time.

How do we fit in time for reading and blogging?

Dana: I read mostly on my commute to school. I have an hour of uninterrupted reading time every morning and night. It is definitely really relaxing and calming for me to have that time. I usually also read before classes because I like to be early. Pretty much whenever I have free time I pull out my book and read. I also like to work on my blog in the honors lounge that I sit in during breaks to read. That hour or two between classes is when most of my review are written, posts set up, and ideas get written down. I also have no classes on Fridays which means Friday is the day that I reply to comments and am more active on twitter.

Rachel: We don't. Haha just kidding. Kind of.... I think the first step is getting into a routine with school and being productive. If you do those two things, you'll eventually save time so you can read and blog more. I usually find time to read during a school week from 11PM to whenever I fall asleep. Blogging mostly happens on the weekends since that's when I have prolonged periods of time when I can gather my thoughts and write posts. 

Naban: I agree with Rachel. Once you get into a decent routine, it's pretty easy.  In fact, I'm the least productive during holidays when my normal routine is taken over by laziness. I normally read before going to bed too. As for blogging, I have these days where I draft several posts at once, so I just have to bring a few changes before posting.

Tips:

Dana:

1. Stay organized! This applies to everything. Keep a planner for school and write everything down in one place. For blogging, keep an up to date calendar of all of your posts that are scheduled. I like to try and plan ahead so all I have to do is hit publish everyday. 

2. Take advantage of the in-between times and always have a book on you. For me that means my hour and a half commute, when ever I am early to a class, in between classes, and right before I fall asleep. I personally can't focus on too much school work on the bus. Even though it is one of those nice coach buses, I feel like I can't devote the same focus to academic reading on the bus as I can to entertainment reading.

3. E-books are your best friend. I love taking my nook with me to school. I love big books, but I am already lugging my laptop, notebooks, and school textbooks. My nook gives me a variety of books to choose from and is great when I finish one book because I can start another one. 

4. This is not necessarily a tip, but having a co-blogger has made things a lot easier. Rachel is also here to nag me into posting and reading. 

Rachel: What she said. ^^

To add to Dana's list:

5. Plan ahead. At the beginning of each blogging month, plan out what you want to post and when you want to post. When you have free time READ and BLOG and get those scheduled posts done ahead of time. If you finish all of your posts for the month, start planning and writing next month's posts. Then you can plan your posts far ahead of time and just hit "publish" instead of scrambling to create a post at the last minute.

6. Have back ups. Always have 2-5 posts ready that you can post at any time if you don't have time to write something else. They're safeties.

Naban: The important points have already been mentioned, and this is not exactly a tip but one I feel is necessary.

7. Take a break if you feel like you're suffocating. You don't have to post every day, or every other day. Your readers will understand even if you miss a few days or weeks. It's important to avoid pressuring yourself, because that's just going to make blogging a dull experience for you and cause a lot of reading slumps and writer's blocks. Even one day of resting helps your creativity by leaps. So take a hiatus if you need to, rest your lovely mind and then come back with a bang.

Overall feelings:

Dana: I personally feel that if you spend all of your time focusing on school you won't be able to put your best efforts into. I think you always need to give yourself an hour or two a day focusing on something fun and something you will enjoy doing. I do enjoy school work, but that isn't mindless and entertaining. Whether you spend an hour of your spare time watching TV, reading, or blogging it will allow you time to breath. If you don't spend time doing what you love rather than only doing what is required than you will be miserable. I try to squeeze in as much time as I humanly can to read, write, and blog. Also I try and cram a few TV shows in here and there.

Rachel: School is very important, and I think that you need to focus on it. It should be your main priority, but it doesn't have to be your sole priority. Find time to blog each day, or at least read each day. This will keep you sane while you're immersed in the busy school year.

Naban: What Dana and Rachel said. Your blog can wait - it's yours after all, but the same cannot be said for school. Unfortunately. You shouldn't have to feel like you need to take all your reading time, free time, blogging time and convert them all into studying time and vice versa. So, take a deep breath, try to manage your time and hopefully, another holiday will be right around the corner.

How do you manage school and blogging? 

13 comments:

  1. Staying organized and taking a break are two very important tips. It's a good feeling to plan everything and to know what you have to do. I love crossing things off my list, it's so motivating :)

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  2. This post will really help me out! Being a fairly new blog, I do need tips on how to blog as well as keep on top of school. Great post!

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  3. I have been waiting for a post like this! I agree with every tip that you gave. I am still trying to post on a regular pattern, but it is still a work in progress. For me, some weeks at school are better than others, so the posts vary with my schoolwork.

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  4. Awesome post! This is my first year in high school, and I'm still trying to adjust to the coming home at 5:30 and waking at 6 to make my commute. I feel like it's just going to get easier. Frankly, on the downside, I don't have much time to read anymore (hence the number of book reviews I've posted this month = 0). I joined the bookclub in my school so I could finally just read. And turns out.. the book club chooses books for u to read!! WHATTT LET ME READ MY PERCY JACKSON D:

    Alex @ The Book's Buzz

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  5. Fantastic post, you guys! :) I definitely appreciate getting tips from three amazing bloggers who are also in school currently, because it gives me hope that I can be as successful as you guys, if that makes any sense xD For me it's not actual schoolwork that's taking up my time, it's speech and debate after school every day (as well as my general laziness, that's a problem as well :P)
    (also, Naban, high five for high school freshmen yay, I am as well!)

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  6. Thanks for this! I just started blogging (like literally last week) and I've only been able to post one thing. I don't know why I chose to start a blog as such a busy time, but I guess I'll just roll with it now :P These were all very helpful tips!

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  7. Dana: I FEEL YOU. I was doing the exact same thing for my freshman year of college, I got on the bus at 6am in the morning and got home at 7pm, had a hour long commute. It sucked. I changed majors xD

    Rachel: I feel you too, junior year was the hardest year of high school for me because of all that.

    Naban: Yay! Hope you are liking high school! I remember it being a huge change as well, but it was nice. Freshman year was definitely the most fun for me :)

    Balancing school and blogging is the worst. My co-blogger and I struggle to post multiple times a week (we are both sophomores in college) so this is a topic I know well. Sleep? Who needs sleep *manic laughter*

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  8. Hahah I'm a junior in college, and I'm just telling you guys this now, but IT GETS BUSIER! I have no idea how I juggle it all (I don't. It's hard. I never have many scheduled posts). I'm trying hard to read more, but I also need to focus on my studies. SO. YEAH

    I think my tip is just to try hard, but always make sure you focus on life before blogging haha :D no one will blame you!

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  9. Rachel, at least you go home at 2 PM. I'm a freshman in high school, and I go to school at 7 AM and arrive home at 6 PM :'< School has been so serious nowadays that they're literally burdening me haha. That's why I barely read my ebooks and ARCs, I love the tips you shared so thank you for them!! :D

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  10. Great tips! :)
    Thank god I'm not in high school yet! This is like one of the good things about being a youngish blogger ;P
    But, my life is totally hectic at the moment with me being so busy with applying for high schools, so I feel basically the same!
    Thanks for the tips! I'm gonna keep them in mind ;)

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  11. This post is LIFE. I feel everything you guys are feeling. Seriously. I'm a sophmore in college, and this year I took less classes because I thought it would be easier... HA YEAH RIGHT. I think this year is when I've LESS been able to blog and read. UGH. However I will try to follow some of your tips. Thanks! :)

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  12. Loving this discussion post because so many of us can relate to it. I am doing a very hard course in school and in one year I started the IB. If you have ever heard of it you know it's one of the toughest ;) So yes, I do juggle a lot! And the thing is, I read whenever I can. I get up early in the mornings and read while I eat and even brushing my teeth etc! Multi tasking and giving an hour a day to read is what keeps me on top of that schedule. Blogging time is harder but I write my reviews in drafts early so I have only to tweak stuff, which helps.

    I have been considering a co blogger but then I am not sure yet ^^

    http://olivia-savannah.blogspot.nl/2014/10/burning-bright-by-sophie-mckenzie.html

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  13. This post speaks to me on a spiritual level... seriously I am the worst at time management and to top it off I'm stuck doing homework from about 3pm to 8-9pm almost everynight just like Rachel, so I haven't found time to do anything BUT school work. Fortunately because exams are approaching and last minute tests are being given, its freed up some of my time so i've been scheduling posts like crazy. I love the tips, and I can definitely use them!

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