Finding the exact balance between having a social life and getting good grades is not the easiest thing for a college student to do.  When there seems to be a constant flow of invites to game nights and frat parties, it can get hard to remember that you are in college (and paying expensive tuition) to learn – not get your drink on and hit on every hot guy/girl you lay eyes on.  The temptation to party non-stop is always there.  So how do you keep your social life going and still get good grades?  Here are my four tips to living it up while still getting good grades.

Get Your Priorities Straight: As a goody-goody myself, I always aim to get straight A’s every semester.  I don’t want to just coast by in schooling by getting Cs and learning just enough to pass the tests (I pay far too much money in tuition to do that).  But I understand not everyone may feel that way – especially while taking your general education classes that aren’t related to your major.   No matter what your goals are, now is the time to figure out what grades you want and what grades you are willing to do the work for.  Once you know this, you have a better idea of how much study and work time you’ll need to devote each week.

Get a Calendar: It doesn’t matter whether the calendar is a paper version or a digital version – all that matters is that you have a calendar and use it religiously.  Go through your syllabus and mark down every assignment, test, and paper and it’s due date.  If you have a major project, break it up into manageable chunks and add the chunks to your calendar.  Add your working hours and any other commitments to your calendar as well.  I enjoy color coding everything to add an extra layer of organization.  Once everything is on your calendar, you can see the time blocks that are available for socializing.

Don’t Force It: Some weekends, I am just too exhausted to go out.  If I try to force myself to go out anyway, I almost always end up becoming the grouchy buzzkill that no one wants to be around.  Rather than trying to push myself to go out, I pass on the opportunity and enjoy a quiet night at home.  It isn’t the end of the world if I miss one party or another night at the club.  The parties and clubs will still be open next weekend – and I get a chance to relax at home and unwind.  Plus, I can still have friends over for a relaxing night in watching movies or having a marathon of our favorite TV show.

Know Your Limits (And Stick to Them!):  How often have you gone out with friends intending on only having a drink or two only to wake up the next morning realizing you drank way more than you should have and begging for the throbbing in your head to stop?  Unfortunately, it used to happen to me all the time back in the days when I didn’t know my limits.  But now I know my limits and rather than pushing them to the very edge, I stick with them.  If I want to go party on Saturday night but know that I have studying to do on Sunday, then I will only have a drink or two and go through extra precautions to make sure I don’t get a headache the next morning.  This allows me the flexibility to have fun with my friends without going so crazy that I can’t get my work done.

How do you balance your studies with your social life?  We’d love to hear your tips!