Time Management Tips

Thanks to Chrystal Stanley, Professional and Career Development Services

Do you ever wish there were 27 hours in a day or 8 days in a week?

Tick, tick, tick…No, it’s not the beginning of 60 minutes.  It’s time moving on.  College students report that one of the biggest problems they face is time management.  Unfortunately, time management is a skill that few people master.

The college years are time when students first learn to deal independently with the many demands on their time: friends, video games, studying, home, relationships and on and on.  That’s why time management skills are crucial.  Don’t become a victim of poor time management!  Recommend these tips to your son or daughter and see if they can squeeze more out of their day.

1. Make a prioritized "To Do" list

Consider the ABC approach to prioritizing your time.  Put the activities that are most important in the A category and do them first.  The next most important activities are in the B category, the least important of your activities in the C category.  The C category might consist of activities that do not need to be done until next week, so they may eventually make their way to the A category.

2. Use spare minutes wisely

Eat your breakfast and review note cards at the same time, or if you get out of class early go run a few important errands.  You can get a lot done in a few spare minutes.

3. Yes, you can say “No”

If your friends ask you to go see a movie and you had planned on studying, tell them you need to study and plan a different time to go out.  You don’t always have to say no, but keeping your short- and long-term priorities in mind is important.

4. Find the right time

When do you do your best work?  For example, do you find your mind wandering more at night than during the day?  Find the time of day that you concentrate best and focus on your toughest subjects at that time. 

5. Review your notes every day

Take a minute or two to review your notes.  You will find that you retain more information than if you try to cram few nights before the exam…and you won’t sweat when the professor asks for a student to answer a question.

6. Get some rest

Little or no sleep makes it hard to concentrate, unless you’re concentrating on how badly you’d like to be sleeping.  Try to get 6-8 hours of sleep every night.  (It is best to go to bed and wake at the same time every day.)

8. Become a taskmaster

Determine how much free time you have each week. Give yourself a time budget and plan your activities and study time accordingly.  Use those half-hour and hour breaks between classes to study.

9. Don't waste time agonizing

The fact that you do not want to work on a project doesn’t mean that it’s going to disappear.  Stop procrastinating. Start working on the project, even if it’s the smallest task. 

10. Keep things in perspective and reward yourself.

Setting goals that are unrealistic sets you up for failure. While it's good to have high aspirations, don’t overdo it.  Set goals that are realistic and reachable.  Don’t forget to reward yourself for reaching your goals.  This will help keep you motivated.

Adapted from: http://www.academictips.org/index.html

Chrystal Stanley
Professional & Career Development Services and
Academic Achievement Coordinator
Old Main 107

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University News
October 20, 2016
The Comparison Project will present the third event in its 2016–2017 series on death and dying. A community interfaith dialogue on Oct. 27 will feature representatives of three different refugee religions in Des Moines.