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With only 24 hours in the day, managing the time we have is a crucial skill to being successful. If you struggle to get things done (like most humans), check out these tips to time management so you can enhance your productivity!

Do not think about the totality of your to-do list

Concentrate on one piece at a time; otherwise, you are going to feel super overwhelmed. If you haven’t made a to-do list yet, start on that! Try listing the most crucial and/or immediate tasks first. There’s nothing more satisfying than checking off all the projects (and closing all the tabs on your computer) when you’re done!

Consider the time when you’re most productive

We all operate differently. Some of us are morning people who crawl into bed before the sun even sets. Others are night owls who don’t feel fully conscious until at least 3:00 in the afternoon. So there’s no right or wrong answer! You are likely to remain focused and retain more information if you choose a time when you perform your best!

Take advantage of your downtime

Whether it be the breaks in between classes, or time working out on the elliptical, take advantage of the gaps in your schedule. No matter if you have readings to finish or math problems to accomplish, you will worry less if you’re chipping away at your work throughout the day. 

Give yourself a time constraint

Utilize alarms on your phone to make sure you are only working on certain tasks for a given period of time. You may be more efficient if you think “I’m going to work on this for an hour,” instead of, “I’m not moving until I get this assignment done.”

Write it all down

It doesn’t matter if you use an agenda, an app, or a calendar with photographs of pizza on each page. Time management is all about keeping track of class schedules and assignments, daily/weekly chores, upcoming exams, social events, big sports matches, and more. By (regularly) maintaining this calendar, you’ll know what to expect each day!

Think about how long certain assignments and activities typically take

If physics homework usually requires a full hour and jazz band is always two hours, you’ll know that you have to allow for that in your daily schedule. Once you clarify all of your commitments, you will figure out a weekly agenda. 

Learn to say no

Unfortunately, there are only a finite number of hours in the day. Sometimes you simply can’t accept every invitation that’s extended. Recognize your priorities, and commit to the events that you truly care about and actually have time for. 

Evaluate the ways in which you waste your time

The list of distractions never ends: Netflix, texting, scrolling through Insta, or even online shopping! Once you pinpoint your own personal methods of procrastination, you will know what to avoid when you need to get work done.

Find time to be still

We know you are a busy bee, but take the time to slow down. Appreciate where you are in this precise moment, and forget about all the rushing and hurrying. If time management stresses you out, take a few minutes to unwind and breathe. Once you give yourself a chance to rest, you can return to your tasks refreshed.

Make it fun

There is always a way to make mundane tasks more entertaining. Get the creative juices flowing and figure out a way to enjoy what you are doing. This could mean turning chores into a dance party or finishing the rest of your philosophy reading under the shade of a tree. Sometimes it’s the little things that make it fun! 

Time management is a technique that can alleviate stress and ensure that you’re performing to the best of your abilities. And while some of us may be more naturally inclined to organization than others, it’s an attribute we can all develop with a little bit of practice. To learn more about creating the perfect schedule, read these tips!