Whether you became a Resident Advisor for the free housing or you genuinely enjoy helping residents in anyway possible, a key factor to remember is that, this is a job. And it’s a job unlike any other. One of the most distinguishing differences between an ordinary job and being a Resident Advisor (RA) is that you are working and living in the same place. Having the same residence and workplace makes it difficult to establish a balance and difference between the two. Follow these classy tips to create the balance between your home and the workplace.
1. Make sure residents understand that your dorm room is your personal space. Although it is fun to have your residents in your room to talk with and watch TV, let them know that your room is not their personal lounge. Remind them that it is only acceptable for them to be in your room with your permission.
2. Find a space to work on things pertaining to your job as a RA. Find a place such as the library or lounge to work, so you are not constantly in your room. This will help establish the difference between your dorm room and the place where you complete your RA duties.
3. Have your residents make appointments to meet with you and discuss their problems. Having your residents setting up a particular time and place to talk helps eliminate the possibility of you constantly being bombarded with their problems all at once. Making a schedule to talk gives you amble opportunity to help and assess the problems of your resident.
4. Try to finish everything you need done for your job during the day. If you treat your RA position as a real job, you would be completing all of your work in the office during the day and then going home. In this case, if you finish all of your work during the day you will not have to bring your work to your dorm room and will have time to yourself.
5. Make time solely for yourself. Making time for yourself is important! Go for a walk or get coffee. This is especially important when working and living in the same place. Making time for yourself allows you to separate yourself from the work place and gives you time to handle your problems as well.
Remember that being a Resident Advisor is your job as well as your home. Do not stress at the lack of separation between the two but instead, follow these classy tips to help live as stress free as possible. Remember to always be professional and continue to stay chic!
Leslie Alston is a junior majoring in Communication Studies and Women and Gender Studies at Pace University. Follow her at @more_or_LESSlie. To stay tuned to more articles for classy co-eds be sure to follow College Lifestyles on Facebook, Pinterest, andTwitter)