11/10/2011 02:14 pm ET Updated Jan 23, 2014

Schedule Smart

It seems this semester is winding down and yet again -- I like so many other students have stretched myself to maximum capacity.

By choice or nomination I have managed to get myself involved in more things than maybe I should have.

Let's see, I started out this semester really ambitious. I was going to take eight classes -- oh yeah, that was a delusion. Thank God I came to my senses and dropped it down to four.

On top of the four classes that I did take, I was blessed to be cast in a play, and made an officer in a school club, both great things but more to do in my busy schedule since this was added to my volunteer work with the Humane Society and church.

I juggled this hectic schedule for two months before realizing that I just couldn't handle it after a very observant instructor brought it to my attention.

I promptly dropped a class to reduce my stress, but by that time I was slightly behind in my other classes. While I have managed to "save" myself in my remaining four classes it has not been easy and I am still struggling. I feel like I will survive these two weeks on a prayer and lots of coffee.

I have other friends who, like me, barely get four hours of sleep a night. Or are finding themselves physically and emotionally depleted because they have taken on too much this semester.

One particular friend had to drop every single one of her classes and is currently on academic probation simply because she thought she could handle more than she could and had poor time management.

So the point of this story is to warn other students that ambition is great, but do not take on more than you know you can handle.

Remember when you are planning your classes that they must fit into your work and life schedule and that you must devote more than just "class time" to the class; that there will also be homework. Take it from someone who learned the hard way.