10 Tips for Time Management

A new semester always comes with new challenges, the biggest of which for me is time management. I wouldn’t necessarily say that I’m a terrible time manager, but I am definitely one to fill my plate to the brim. It is important to have a good work-life balance, but most weeks that tends to be a challenge.

Lucky enough, you’ve got yourself a proud Type A collegiette here who is determined to hit the ground running this semester, and hopefully avoid any stress-induced mental breakdowns *flashes back to finals week last semester*.

Here are a few tips that I use to help myself stay sane during the semester:

1.       Set goals

The beginning of a new semester is a great time to re-evaluate the previous year and think about any changes that you may want to make. Whether its making the dean's list, finding a couple new friends, or focusing on your health, it is never a bad time to better yourself! Try posting the goals somewhere that you will see them every day.

 

 

2.       Get a planner

I cannot tell you the amount of times that I’ve opened up my planner to check my schedule for the day just to realize that I had an extra assignment (or two) that needed to be submitted (or how about an appointment made weeks ago that has somehow caught me by surprise???). The last thing that you want to do in your first few weeks of the school year is to miss an important meeting with a professor, so save yourself some grief and write everything down!

3.       Develop a routine

Having a steady routine can be a great way to manage your time. Once you have a schedule set for yourself, it almost becomes second nature. Try taking Sunday nights to plan out the rest of your week (also a great way to avoid and unexpected events and assignments). Schedule time for class, work, homework, and friends of course!

4.       Make to-do lists

Those who know me personally are fully aware that I am the queen of list making. If I don’t write it down, I won’t remember it. Creating a to-do list can also do a good job of keeping you task oriented, which will save you time in the long run (not to mention the unmatched satisfaction that comes from crossing off each item on the list).

 

 

5.       Avoid procrastination at all costs

Yeah, I know, this one is a long shot. I often find myself mid-semester getting caught in a rut of putting everything off until the last minute. The best advice that I have come across is to have some foresight into impending deadlines. NO MORE ALL NIGHTERS.

6.       Prioritize

While you may be inclined to direct all of your energy to your newest creative writing assignment, that trig homework is not going to do itself. Make sure you are allocating the appropriate amount of time to all of your coursework, and not just the assignments that interest you (though there is nothing wrong with getting more involved with your assignments). A tip for this is to get the *painful* homework out of the way first (earlier in the morning if you can).

7.       Keep your living space clean

This might sound like a weird one, but trust me, keeping your room clean can do wonders for keeping you on task and alleviation unnecessary stress. Don’t leave the dishes or laundry for later, I can tell you right now they will just continue to pile up. Having your living space organized can make you feel like you have your life a little more organized.

8.       Get your rest

On that note, make sure you are getting enough sleep each night. It can be hard during the semester to get in those eight crucial hours (ha, yeah right), but nonetheless, they are very important. Getting enough sleep at night will keep your productivity level high. If you can, try going to bed early and waking up earlier.

 

 

9.       Don’t be afraid to say no!

This is by far the most difficult item on the list for me, but quite possibly the most important. We all only have 24 hours in a day, and while getting in those internship hours is important, so are you. Try making an effort at the beginning of the semester to decide what you think your schedule can handle this semester- be honest with yourself. And if those internship/extra volunteer hours mean sacrificing a night out to get some rest, that’s fine too!

10.   Set aside some time for yourself

If you are introverted like me, then you understand the struggle of getting home from what felt like and endless day of classes (let’s be real, social interaction) and just wanting to throw yourself into bed. Set aside at least one night a week to just be by yourself and recuperate.

 

Hopefully these tips help you to feel as though you have some semblance of control over your life. College is most definitely a balancing act, and the start of a semester doesn’t always go smoothly. The important thing to remember is that there are only 24 hours in a day- do your best with them!