Finishing a graduate study includes a lot of life dramas and if you are at the receiving end of being given too many difficult students in an educational institution, and even more auxiliary tasks to handle, the demands can easily take their toll on you. You can find yourself not having enough time to unwind or socialize with your family and friends.
Indeed, it is easy to allow ourselves to get engrossed with our teaching jobs and just ignore the opportunity to grow more in our profession. Once it happen, we get stagnant in our position by just letting the sea of opportunities to skip off from our way. It is depressing once we get used to falling behind and be less important. It means we just let times pass by. Not progressing in any professional growth within our field.
With that in mind, I started to dream of pursuing a Master’s Degree with my trusted friend and classmate; Meliza. She and I started to venture on our life in the Philippine Normal University as graduate students. We passed both the Graduate College Admission Test (GCAT) and the oral interview.
But those were just the beginning; there were still many hurdles that we needed to overcome. I have been through a series of challenges that made me toss and turn over whether to stop or push through with my studies. There were times that things did not go smoothly. I struggled with health, conflicting time schedules, money, and negative emotions.
Fast forward, after four years… I finally GRADUATED!
I never thought I would be able to finish what I started in the Philippine Normal University. It was the 2nd day of April 2014 when I went up the stage to receive the diploma for my hard work and grueling studies. I could not contain the happiness at that time. My mom, my sister and Steven, my boyfriend, were there among the crowd celebrating my triumph.
I was glad I did not quit because if I had, I wouldn’t know how amazing it feels to graduate with the degree that began with a dream and appeared impossible to finish. All stress, anxieties, sleepless nights, and sacrifices for four years gave a huge payoff.
Starting on another degree in your profession is amazing and finishing it is undeniably impressive. There are times that obstacles appear when we are already at the middle and we get caught in a dilemma whether to continue or to quit.
But how can we stay motivated and engaged when life throws problems?
Here I am to share with you some tips that served as my guide to finish my Master’s Degree.
Focus on your end goal.
Every time you feel like stopping, just think of the reasons why you started this study in the first place. Perhaps, you just need to ignite the flame of your motivation to keep on fighting against hardships. Do a flashback on what drove you to enroll on this degree course. Was it for promotion, or for gaining more knowledge and skills? No matter what it was, one thing is for sure. Your persistence would eventually provide the success and benefits will come in great measures beyond your imagination.
Go with the people that share the same dream as you do.
The burdens become lighter when you share the weight with people who do the same thing. Submitting a term paper or presenting an application for a certain theory is not as simple as you were in college. Often times, the demands for a particular subject become overwhelming. Having friends who study in the same course as you do may help mitigate the trouble understanding what and how to do a particular task. Life in being a graduate student turns to be enjoyable and bearable because of the friends around us that would keep us sane.
Secure your financial savings for your study.
The most common reason that students fail finishing their degree is because of financial issues. Many people think that studying while you are single is much better than studying when you are already married or have kids. While it may be true to some people, others might raise from their seats in disagreement. They are those whom the society consider as the “breadwinners.” It means that they do not keep all their money to themselves. They have their parents, siblings, nephews or nieces whom they have been giving financial assistance.
Whatever is your status right now, single or married, do not let money to be a hindrance for you not to be able to finish your studies. Make a financial plan, budget your money and save as much as you can. It entails a big sacrifice most, especially if you are a gimmick fanatic or a shopaholic.
Balance in your life.
Working and studying at the same time can make you burn out easily. If both of them completely swallowed most of your time, it can turn out to be a detrimental factor for your health. You are after a better future but if your health will be at stake, then what is the point of all those hardships? Everything should be in moderation and if you feel like too much of your time goes to work and study alone, then, it is the time to reflect and shift a change in lifestyle.
5. Always look at the bright side of life
Once in a while, there will be factors that will weaken your goal to finish your study. A strict professor, a very low grade, intimidating classmates, financial burdens, family pressures – name it all. But don’t let any of those factors put you down. In this vast world, the only constants are God, death, and change. It just means that whatever difficulties you are going through will eventually pass. So, whenever you feel down, just go back to my first tip at the top.
At present, I am taking a doctoral degree and I’ve been using these tips. They do not only lighten my mood, they’ve preserved my sanity at being a graduate student. Most of all, they’ve helped me create a courageous heart and dedicated mind to harness my wholesome personality that justifies my profession.
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