I sometimes find myself wishing I could pause time for a few hours so I could participate in an event or be in a club and still get a full night’s sleep. Between balancing classes, a job (or jobs) and other responsibilities, if you find yourself wanting to make time for extracurricular activities, here are some ideas:

Become friends with a calendar
Whether it’s on your phone, computer or up on the wall of your room, a calendar can help you keep up with events, due dates and commitments far in advance. Tracking your plans can help decrease stress and avoid that “I just realized I have an assignment due tomorrow” panic. Bonus tip: including how much an assignment is worth and setting reminder notifications a week in advance can give you even more peace of mind.

Take time to look forward
Personally, I try to start every week by looking ahead at what responsibilities are scheduled for the next few days. I find this gives me a sense of control over my schedule, rather than feeling like it controls me.

Consider using lists
Or, if you prefer, downloading a to-do list app is a similar option. Not only does this help keep your day or week organized, but some people also find the action of ticking items off of their to-do list quite satisfying.

Actively talk to faculty members
This applies particularly to the faculty members who are conducting research that you find interesting, and those who may serve as a mentor for you during your degree. Asking a research student or professor about their work is a great way to network, learn about your field of study, and can even lead to work or research opportunities.

Make a university “bucket list”
Perhaps it is something you would like to do each year you spend at Carleton, or it may be a list of memories you would like to make before you graduate. University happens quickly, and I find writing down places I’d like to visit or events I would like to attend helps ensure I actually experience them while I’m in Ottawa.