Time management is a skill. It may seem like something that comes easy, or that you can have under control without ever really putting effort into it, but having good time management is a really tough thing to learn for many students. When I first came to college, I assumed I could do everything the way that I did in high school – that is, start papers the night before they’re due and still have time on the weekends to hang out with my friends every night.
That is certainly not the case anymore.
Test out different methods of organization.
Everyone is different. Some people keep a carefully detailed planner, some people use the calendar on their phones, some people use a wall or desk calendar. Everyone has different things that work for them, and just because one method works for your friend doesn’t necessarily mean it will work for you.
Take time to figure how certain things work for you, and what you can stay on top of. And don’t get too frustrated if you’ve tried what seems like a million and one things and feel like you’ve gotten nowhere. There’s going to be something out there that works for you.
Don’t overwhelm yourself with too much.
Yes, extracurriculars, internships, part-time jobs, and organizing study groups every week are awesome things to do. Staying busy can even help you to manage your time, since having too much free time could make staying on top of your responsibilities really tough.
But always make sure you have time for yourself! And that you’re able to allot enough time to complete your homework.
Make sure you can actually fit a full 8 hours into your schedule.
Try to make your class schedule work for you.
If you can, try to take classes during the time of day when you’re most attentive. For example, I know that my energy runs low at the end of the day. I do much better waking up early and doing work at the beginning of my day. By the time lunch is over, I just want to hang out and not doing anything. So, taking night classes – for me – is awful because I’m not prepared to pay attention or motivated to do any work for the class.
Find what works for you, and try to make your schedule accordingly.