So what is time management?
It’s when you know you have a test next week and you don’t want to cram for the test again. Managing your time will let you study for the test an hour a day, instead of 5 hours in one day.
How do I manage my time?
The basic idea is that you create some sort of schedule, or plan, for your day. Then you stick to it. Here’s some tips on creating the schedule, and then staying with it.
I. Keeping track
- Keep a planner. This will let you easily see what you need to have done by the end of the week!
- I keep a todo list of what I need to finish for the day. Mine is simple to avoid overloading my brain. For today I wrote “Finish Math homework. Finish Electronics Lab report. Study Physics”.
- I don’t write down exact times that I do my homework. I tried this earlier, and found it was too challenging to keep to such a strict schedule. My workflow works best when I can choose what to work on, and when I can work on it.
- Some people will find that having too much freedom in their schedule will be challenging to follow. In that case, they would prefer a strict schedule saying to do homework at a specific time.
- You need to find out what works for you, everyone is different. Try a technique, and move on if it’s not working.
- I color code my life so that I know what I need done at a glance.
- Determine what’s urgent. If I have a test the next day and homework due in two days, I’m going to use that day for studying for the test.
- Tasks with a stricter deadline should be done first.
- Tasks worth more of your grade should have more time allocated for it.
- Allocate time when you have the most energy. I have the most energy mid-day, so I try to do my schoolwork after lunch, before dinner.
II. Staying on track
- Don’t overload yourself and say you’ll finish 2 projects and 60 pages of reading in one day. This is what time management is for in the first place.
- Break it up! That 60 pages of reading can be 20 pages over 3 days.
- Start small if you’re new to this. Overtime it will be easier to allocate tasks since you’ll have experience with managing your time. At first you can simply say “Today I will write the first 200 words of the essay.” and then work up to larger tasks once you’re used to allocating time.
- The hardest part is starting! Our brains create this dread with schoolwork, but once we start it’s never as bad as we make it seem.
- Find out why you’re not starting your homework, and then learn to overcome it.
- My fear of starting stems from a fear of failure since I’m a perfectionist. I overcame this fear by reminding myself that starting is better than nothing at all.
- Reward yourself once you finish a task, or when you stay on schedule.
- Getting off schedule is not the end of the world! Time management will let you make up for the time lost! Usually it’s a sign of stress when you miss work, so find what the cause is.
- I would miss work in high school because I was afraid I would never understand the topic so I didn’t bother starting. This is a bad idea ™ since the work is there to help you practice and you will start understanding the topic once you practice!
- Schedule time for breaks! It’s easier to have a guilt-free break when you put the time in to take a break!
- Have a “Do nothing” day. On fridays I don’t do any schoolwork. I relax and enjoy the day. This lets my brain rest after a long week, and I get to enjoy my time with friends.
- Have fun with it! I love checking off things I did and looking back at the week with checkmarks everywhere!
- Check what you need done in the morning so that it’s on your mind and you can start planning your day.
- Not every second of everyday needs to be allocated to schoolwork! If you have a 20 minute break between classes, relax! It’s better to give you brain a break and to feel better than to fill your entire day down to the minute with learning.
- Don’t multitask. Allocate time for both tasks so that you can focus on a specific task.