The Effective Use of Time Management
Your lazy days of summer vacation are fading quickly only to be replaced by 8am classes and late night study sessions. It’s the first week of classes and already you feel like you are three weeks behind. Your friends want you to meet them for pizza and a movie, your parents want to face time, you haven’t eaten since breakfast and it’s quickly approaching dinner time. You have too much to do and too many things to think about.
Time management skills aren’t something we are born with. They are a set of skills we learn. And when implemented, they will save you lots of headaches and less wasted time!
- Make a list. Put the most important tasks at the top, even if they’re things you’re dreading, and tackle them first. Include things you want to do on your list too, so you have items you’re looking forward to. Try motivating yourself with a reward if you get to everything on your list.
- Keep your work with you. That way, if you find yourself with extra time—while on the train or bus or waiting for an appointment—you can get something done.
- Don’t be afraid to say no. It’s OK to say no if your friend asks you to go to a movie one night but you have a test the next morning. Instead, find a time that works for both of you and go see the movie then.
- Find your productive time. Are you a morning person or a night person? You’ll be more efficient if you work when you’re at your best.
- Create a dedicated study time. Set up a time devoted only to studying or homework. Shut off your phone and respond to calls or texts when your work is finished. Don’t check email or surf the Web (except when you need to for the work you’re doing) during this time either.
- Budget your time. Figure out how much time you usually spend on your activities and then create a weekly schedule to follow. Determine how much free time you have before you add any commitments. And don’t forget to schedule time to relax.
- Don’t get sidetracked. If you find yourself wasting time on unimportant things, stop, check your to-do list and get back to what’s at the top. Maybe you’re procrastinating because you’re not sure how to move forward on a school project. If that’s the problem, check with your teacher to clear things up so you can get moving.
- Get a good night’s sleep. Your brain needs rest to perform at its peak. If it’s time to sleep, list the things you still need to get done on the next day’s to-do list and go to bed.