There are a lot of traits necessary to be a successful college student such as organizational skills and the ability to digest large amounts of frozen or greasy foods. However, one trait that is absolutely critical to getting through college with your sanity intact is time management. For many, time management isn’t a natural skill. After all, for most of your pre-college life someone is always telling you where to be and what to do. Once you hit the campus though you’re on your own. Here are five tips that will lead to better time management for college students.
Time Management for College Students: 5 Tips
1. Get a calendar
While it may seem like a chore, one tip to improve time management for college students is to write everything down in the most minute detail. This includes everything from going to the store to working out to studying for your midterm. Writing everything down will prevent forgetting tasks or double booking yourself. Plus, you’ll gain gratification when you get to cross items off.
In this digital age, you have a lot of calendar options. You could use your phone, a Google calendar, or go old school with a pen and paper. There is no right answer – just find the method that works best for you.
A must have aspect of time management for college students is keeping one’s priorities in check. Write down all the things you need to do (go to class, study, go to the grocery store) and all the things you want to do (go shopping and go to a party Saturday night). Also write down when these things need to be done by. Next prioritize them in order of importance.
For example, if you’re going to a party on Saturday night but you have an exam Monday morning you can bet that you probably won’t get a lot of high quality studying done Sunday. Prioritize! Skip the party or get home early to ensure you’re ready to study bright and early on Sunday. Don’t worry, there will be another party next weekend.
When prioritizing, try to plan for the unexpected. What this means is simply to keep some flexibility in your schedule because things are bound to come up and there’s no point in getting upset or stressing about it. Be prepared to adjust your schedule.
Use multitasking with caution. Multitasking can be a great tool when it comes to time management for college students; however, it can contribute to burn out. To ward off extra stress and burn out always be honest with yourself about how much you’re taking on and look for signs of burn out.
There are a lot of ways to multitask in college. For example, you might read the assigned chapter while riding a bike at the gym or if you have down time at work (i.e. babysitting) you might squeeze in some homework.
Be cognizant of all aspects of your health. The best tips for time management for college students in the world won’t make you successful if you burn yourself out or make yourself sick.
Here are some things you can do to help protect your health:
– Take a 30 minute power nap between classes to increase your productivity.
– Take a walk around campus after dinner to help clear your mind and stretch your muscles before hitting the books.
– Opt for healthy and nutritious fuel instead of foods that come in a greasy paper bag. Check out these 25 cheap and easy meals for college students to get inspired.
– Take up a hobby to help you unwind and allot a small bit of time each day to indulge in it.
5. Seek Assistance
Who better to provide the secrets of time management for college students than other college students? Ask friends and classmates who appear stress-free (or at least less stressed) but are still getting everything done how they manage it.
Talk to your professor. If you are having an especially difficult time completing all the tasks for a course, chat with the professor to see if he or she can offer suggestions on how to meet all the requirements.
Last but not least, consult with student services on your campus for help with time management. They may be able to provide tutoring or guides on being successful in college as well as other helpful hints.
Remember that college should be one of the best times of your life. Sure you’re poor but never again will you be able to sleep till noon, wake up, eat breakfast and go back to bed. Life only gets more complicated when you graduate so enjoy it and make the most of it with these five tips for better time management for college students.
One last tip, find a schedule that works for you that results in maximum efficiency and allows for time for fun.