Single Mothers Higher Education Struggles

Working full-time, raising four children, and completing a graduate degree while being a single mother was an arduous task. However, with organization, commitment, determination, and patience, a graduate degree and even a doctoral degree are obtainable.

Being divorced and on my own for seven years brought about many struggles; however, with the following tips, you can successfully complete your higher educational goals:

Tip 1. Organization: Organizing your time is a big struggle for many. But you can do it. You must first plan your long-term goals. You must calendar the yearly achievements you wish to achieve. You definitely need to calendar your monthly tasks. The weekly assignments demand advanced planning.

The daily work must be organized to the hour. Plan your daily to-dos ahead of time ensuring that you jot down everything that needs to be completed for the day. Include getting the children up and ready for school, making breakfast, starting a load of laundry, packing lunches, saying your goodbyes, stopping off at the grocery store for those dinner items, beginning your daily reading, and getting yourself to work.

There are 24 hours in a day and that equals 1440 minutes, which provides ample time to complete many daily tasks (including reading the children a book before bedtime).

Tip 2. Commitment: You need to have a commitment to yourself, to your family, and to your education. Struggling to complete a course, let alone an entire degree, is a laborious task. However, if you are committed to achieving your higher education goals, you will automatically become committed to your learning.

While you are committing time to your learning, this is a good time to share your learning with your children. Work together during homework time. Share the “office space” and learn together about being studious. Your commitment to education will automatically become a good experience for your children because you are setting many good examples. You have become a first-rate role model for your children.

Tip 3. Determination: When the courses get tough and you are struggling along, remember your goals. Reflect on your long-term commitments and goals that you have set for yourself.

Determination is a struggle that your children will encounter in school as well. Continue to strive for what you desire while teaching your children to strive for their educational goals of completing preschool, kindergarten, fifth grade, and sixth grade (whatever grades they are in). Willpower will help you through your most stressful times.

Tip 4. Patience: You will need a lot of patience with yourself, your schooling, and especially with your family. Your children demand and require a lot of your attention, and rightly so.

When you are overwhelmed with schoolwork, housework, daily routines, and family affairs take a few minutes to meditate, breathe deeply, or exercise (whatever method you find to relax). Once you have relaxed, you will retain the patience you need to forge on. This is also a good strategy to teach your children.

Final Point

Never give up on your higher educational goals. There will be times when you may think that you can’t complete your degree, but you can. There will be times you believe other areas of your life need your attention. Stop. And pay attention to those areas of your life, but don’t give up on your educational goals.

Maintain a balance at all times with every aspect of your life while working on obtaining your degree. And never forget: organization, commitment, determination, and patience will help you overcome your struggles and lead you to completing one of your dreams – a higher education.