We all know how easily assignments, exams, quizzes, and projects can sneak up on us as the school weeks passes. Sometimes it can feel overwhelming and like there is no way to prevent the ongoing stress and anxiety which many students face. The weeks go by quickly while the days drag on for what seems like a lifetime. There are many ways to uphold the promise you made to yourself at the beginning of the semester to “get my work done before the last minute.” These tips may not work for everyone, but there are many of them and if at least one helps a student then it is worth a read.
1. Keep A Calendar
- Make a yearly, monthly or weekly calendar. It is beneficial to know exactly what is due when. Your yearly planner will help you see big events that are coming up such as midterm and exam dates. The monthly planner will help with time management so that everything due soon will be listed and not a surprise. The weekly planner will help you stay on task with notes such as “work on an essay for an hour,” or “read for philosophy for 30 minutes,” so that nothing is put off until the last minute. Lastly, the daily planner will help you complete all your goals since every morning you will need to make a list of what needs to be completed. You can keep track of your assignments through a planner, dry erase board, a simple list, or even post it.
2. Set Goals
- Set deadlines and write them down. Make sure to meet them. The way to do this is to set small goals rather than big goals. For example, if a ten-page paper is due in 2 weeks, make sure to set at least four deadlines. These deadlines would include a brainstorm, a five-page draft, a 10-page draft, and then the final product. If you miss one of these goals don’t stress out, just reconsider the assignment due date and make another plan.
- We all know we can get sidetracked off our schedule due to a mountain of reasons, but that does not mean we should miss deadlines. Prioritizing is a huge factor in keeping up with schoolwork. We know that missing a paper worth 20% of your final grade is worse than missing one out of five homework assignments each worth 2% of your final grade is a good way to prioritize. Try to meet all your deadlines, but if left with a choice consider the repercussions or even make a pros and cons list.
4. Know Your Peak Times
- Work done is so much easier when you feel productive. This is different for everyone so try out different times of the day and see what works for you! Whether its early morning, late afternoon or midnight make sure to block that time off for schoolwork. Set small breaks every hour or half-hour for a stretch or a snack so that your productivity lasts longer, and you don’t get bored as easily. Also, find a space in which you feel you can sit for hours and be comfortable in that space.
5. Care for Yourself
While deadlines are important, personal health is important as well. Handing in your work while fatigued will result in not handing in your best work. Take care of your mind and body in whatever way you feel works best for you!
These tips are ones we hear about all the time when talking about time management and that is because they work. If you put your mind to it, you can meet all your assignment deadlines easily and stress-free!