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How To Manage Your Time In College

Greetings Ladies! I trust that this summer has been fantastic for everyone – sunny days, new bathing suits, Starbucks, and hopefully a few shopping sprees! With the first home football game of the season only a day away, it’s time to embrace all of changes that the Fall 2012 semester will bring. Besides Welcome Week, Sorority Rush,and Saturday tailgates, we will soon be neck-deep in the pool of items on our to-do lists. So how do we handle it all?

Once the semester picks up and we’re past the backpacking and loan signings, how do we decide what’s important? Is it that all-day tailgate, or the essay due Monday morning? All of us need a time management introduction, or as I like to call it, TMI. While most of us feel as though each semester bombards us with too much information, time management tends to fall to the wayside now and then. Each of us has tons of things to do (we are Michigan gals after all), so here is a list of 10 things that might help to get you acquainted with those time management skills that you’ll grow to love.

1. Make a list: No matter how great a memory we may think we have, Michigan will challenge us, and more often than not, we’ll forget at least one thing. There’s no telling how important it might be, so write it down somewhere convenient and practical.

2. Prioritize: Keep the main thing the main thing. All of us are here for a reason, and as important as that party or outing might seem, there will be plenty more in the future. Remember: you don’t get graded on how you perform in your social life.

3. Get involved, but not TOO involved: Our campus has more than 200 student organizations, so join one or two, but keep it restricted to just a few! There will always be opportunities to become more involved as time goes on, but taking on too much can mean slipping in class, and when that happens, things can get messy.

4. Reach out: Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Whether you’re looking guidance on campus directions, class choices, or emotional support, U of M’s resources are limitless. From CAPS to Academic Advisors, someone is always waiting with their door open.

5. Relationships: This is the time when it’s important to decide which relationships you want to keep, and which you’ll leave behind. With fifteen credits, two student orgs, and personal time, there’s a lot to balance in college. Make sure that the people in your life understand and support that.

6. Step out of the dorms: Michigan is what you make it – you can be an excellent student without staying cooped up all day. Spending time with friends can help you relax on weekends and give you something to look forward to after class isn’t in session.

7. Health & Wellness: Make sure that whatever makes you, you, is a priority. If you’re a runner, keep going on your runs. If you’re a writer, take time each day to write in your journal. If you’re religious, pray. Always keep who you are front and center; it’s what will make you happy and successful.

8. Find a way to de-stress: Transitioning from high school to Michigan is not an easy process. You will be stressed out at one point or another, and because of that, it’s important to find a healthy way to vent. Whether it’s a power nap, listening to your favorite song, or going for a spontaneous jog in the Arb, find a de-stressing activity that works for you.

9. Learn to take GOOD notes: We all love our laptops, but sometimes you’ve got to buckle down, which often means logging off during lecture. You’ve got to resist Facebook, pause the Tweets, and let Instagram hibernate… at least until class ends. Just because we are capable of multitasking doesn’t mean we’re learning and listening to the best of our abilities.

10. Go to Office Hours: If you have questions about an assignment or about a class in general, there’s no one better to ask than your professor. More often than not, they will give you a clear-cut explanation of what they expect from you, which means that when the exam comes around, you’ll have an advantage.
Hopefully these tips will help you gals as much as they help me. Time management is hard to master; don’t worry if perfecting the art is something of a work-in-progress. Good luck ladies, I wish you all the best!

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