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Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Dear Students: Manage Your Work, Don't Let It Manage You!

Don't Give Up and Wave The White Flag....Prioritize!!

We are at that time of year again when the start of school is just around the corner. From freshman's to upper class, with work and or school, there just doesn't seem to be enough hours in a day to accomplish goals. But, in order to accomplish goals you first must set them! You know the saying "Failing to plan is planning to fail" right? Well, I firmly believe this now. I say now because in my younger years, I didn't really understand the importance of planning and prioritizing. I can proudly say that I now not only understand the importance but I 100% can appreciate the value planning and prioritizing brings. 

If you need a little insight on how to plan and prioritize, check out these seven tips below for effectively managing your time and getting ahead!

Be Organized
  • Use Time saving tools: appointment calendars, "to do" list, file folders etc.
  • Make use of your appointment calendars for EVERYTHING including listing study time. You'd be surprised at how keeping a visual of what needs to be done helps.
  • Use your "to do" list for both long term and daily goals
Plan Ahead
  • Determine how long your task will take by giving yourself a realistic time frame.
  • Look at your schedule for the day and see if anything can be combined i.e: having to study and needing to visit the library as part of an assignment. Instead of saying "I'll study when I get home and I'll just work on my paper at the library, kill two birds with one stone and work on both at the library. Allocate time for studying and also time to work on your paper so that the only thing left to do at home is relax.
Prioritize Your Task
  • Try using an A-B-C rating system for your "to do" list with A being highest priority. 
  • Although you want to knock out your "A" list items, never put off your B and C list items too long. Postponing your smaller task too long can get overlooked which will then become larger task and can result in you using more time and energy than needed. (keep in mind the point of time management is to create a stress free environment).
Avoid Overload
  • Your heath (mental and physical) is very important so be sure to include time for rest, relaxation, sleep, eating, exercise and socializing in your busy schedule.
  • Take short breaks during study periods.
  • Learn to say "NO" when appropriate and also to negotiate better deadlines when appropriate. 
Create Effective Study Techniques
  • Have an appropriate study environment (quiet, clean and space appropriate).
  • Read for comprehension instead of just trying to get to the end of the chapter/book.
  • Take note during study of any clarity needed, rather than waiting until right before an exam.
  • Read the syllabus as soon as you get it and notate all due dates on your calendar.
Make Time For The Unexpected
  • The unexpected happens (car trouble, traffic, sickness etc.) so never give yourself "just enough" time.
  • Know how  to rearrange your schedule when necessary (remember: you mange your schedule, it doesn't manage you).
Have And Keep A Vision
  • Create a vision board so that you don't forget the "BIG" picture.
  • When starting a task or activity, ask yourself "is this important to your long-term/personal goals or "are your activities ultimately helping or hurting you in achieving your goals"?
  • Last but not least....with this vision try keeping a positive attitude. Negativity gets you NO WHERE! Negative thoughts lead to negative actions. Remember: Your attitude determines your altitude!

I hope you all enjoyed these tips that were initially created for students but really can be of great use for anyone. If you are already a highly planned and prioritized person, share this info with others. I'm sure we all know at least one person that can use some help in making their day easier! 

As always...Thanks for checking out my blog: TwithTally!

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