Student Resources: Time Management

Manage Your Time

Some Tips to Manage Your Time:

1.  The purpose of time management is to assist you in accomplishing your goals.  Take out a sheet of paper and list as many goals as you can think of in the next five minutes.  Consider education, work, personal, family and recreation goals in these time periods:
Goals for the next year
Goals for the next 3 years
Lifetime goals

2.  Now that you have a list of your goals, think about how you are spending your time each day and set priorities.  Make a list of the major activities you have done or plan to do today.  Label any activity that relates to a lifetime goal an "A". For example, one of my lifetime goals is to maintain my good health so I would label working out in the gym with an "A".    Label any important activities a "B".  I have to get gas for my car, so I would label this activity with a "B".  Next, label any activity you could postpone until tomorrow with a "C".  I could wash my car next week so this activity would receive a "C".  

3.  Learn to think about priorities as you spend your time each day.  Give more importance to those activities that are related to your lifetime goals.

4.  If you are short on time, make a "To Do" list.  Label the "A" activities and see if you can accomplish them first. 

5.  Avoid "C Fever" which is spending your time on the "C" activities first.  These activities are generally easier to accomplish and we can see immediate results. However, you may not get to the important activities on your lifetime goal list.

6.  Find a reward for accomplishing challenging activities that relate to your lifetime goal.  For example, reward yourself with your favorite TV program after you have completed your homework for the day.   If you watch the TV program first, you may not get to the homework.  

7.  Select healthy rewards.  Do not choose rewards that cost too much money, have too many calories or involve alcohol or drugs.

8.  If you have a large project to accomplish, break it into small parts and do the first step.  Doing the first step gets you started and may motivate you to continue.

8.  College students on the average need to spend 2 hours studying for each hour in class.  Until you get used to college, you may need to have a schedule that includes classes, work, scheduled activities and study time.  

9.  Research shows that you should work no more than 20 hours a week to be a successful full-time college student.  If you need to work more hours, reduce your course load.  It is better to be successful in a few classes that to get poor grades and become frustrated with college.

10.  Remember that you climb a mountain one step at a time.   Break large tasks into small parts and begin with the first step.  You can be successful in college one step at a time too.