The first few weeks of the semester can be hectic and overwhelming, but now that we are officially a month in, it's time to start creating a plan to keep on top of your school work! One of the most important life lessons you'll learn while in college is how to manage your time properly. This is something that I, personally, still struggle with myself, but have found a few methods that work for keeping myself productive and time-oriented! Here are my tips and tricks for time management:
1. Get a planner!
The days of getting free planners from your middle school and high school are over! Don't let the dread of using your own money keep you from purchasing a planner, though. These tiny little books of numbered papers are actually extremely helpful in organizing when you have to be somewhere, when an assignment is due and when you will work on said assignment. More important than the planner itself is to make it a habit to USE the planner.
2. Sticky notes are a blessing sent from heaven
Sometimes you don't want to put little tasks such as printing out your paper for class in your planner. May I introduce to you the magic of sticky notes. These tiny little sheets of paper are perfect for making small lists of tasks to do that can be nicely placed inside your planner, but also recycled once they are completed!
3. Turn off electronics when working on important assignments
Unless the assignments absolutely require technology, turn off all electronics. Yes, this includes your television, laptop, cell phone, console, etc. Occasionally, I'll actually give my iPhone and laptop to someone to keep hostage until I have completely my task because I know they are a distraction for me. Time management is all about getting things done when they're planned to and distractions, especially electronics, tend to disrupt that.
4. Treat yo' self
Managing time also means being productive with the time you've assigned yourself for certain tasks. Studies show that taking breaks while working can actually result in more productivity. After you write the first two pages of your five page paper, take a few minutes to check your Snapchats, but give yourself a time limit and STICK TO IT to avoid wasting time dedicated to writing that paper!
5. Don't procrastinate!
Procrastination can sometimes be a good thing to help unwind your mind, but if you're constantly procrastinating, like most of us, then you're constantly putting off work that could be done already! Let the satisfaction of crossing a task off on your planner motivation for doing said task during its set time.
Time management is essentially a skill that must be practiced in order to become an everyday routine. It is not just a necessary skill to have as a college student, but as an adult, as well. Once you have your time managed properly, you will feel more organized and on top of your life.