Time Management 101: How To Stay On Top Of Everything

Fall semester is in full swing, and in addition to the papers and assignments that seem to keep piling up, your other activities are requiring more of your time as well. So how can a busy collegiette™ like you find time for everything? By managing it, of course! Time management is a skill that everyone needs, but it is also a skill that takes planning and discipline. If you’re ready to learn how to manage your time well so that you have time for everything you love, read on!
Plan for Every Day
“Treat each day like an 8-5 job,” said Melissa Medlin, the director of Career Planning and Development at the University of North Alabama. She says to make a schedule of your class time and work time, and use the breaks in between each for everything else. Taking advantage of breaks can really cut down on the time you spend at night studying and preparing for class. If you schedule that two-hour break between biology and English to go to the library and do research for an upcoming paper, you’ll have two hours of research done! Sure, it’s fine to occasionally take a break from school and hang out with friends mid-day, but remember that the time you spend during the day relaxing will be the time you spend studying that night.
Use Your Free Time
“Don’t just leave time empty. Plan free time, too,” Medlin said. She says planning naps, hanging out with friends and other fun activities is important, too because you can see when you have to do work and when you can leave some time free for something fun. If you know there is going to be a great party Saturday night that you don’t want to miss, make sure you study throughout the week for that huge test on Monday.

Don’t Procrastinate

“You might work better under pressure… until that pressure pops,” said Medlin. She said that working well under pressure is common, especially in college, but that pressure can really wear you down. If you wait to do that 14-page paper until the last minute, not only will the quality of work be worse, but you will be way more stressed out about it than if you had worked on it since the time it was assigned. She also said waiting until the last minute leaves no room for “what if” situations. If you are planning on working on something the night before it’s due, but then an unforeseen emergency happens, you won’t be able to finish the work. Many professors will have sympathy for the situation, but they will also expect you to turn in the assignment, especially if you’ve known about the assignment for a while.