Do you ever feel like your life is spinning out of control? Well, I often feel that way. Ever since I began college in August, I have had to learn how to get my life together and manage my time. The amount of work has increased tremendously since high school, but the hours in the day have stayed the same. I find myself overwhelmed daily. My day to day responsibilities change and I never really have a set schedule. I am involved in multiple clubs and also a sorority. One day, I may have three classes, an exam, work and a sorority event. The next day I may just have two classes and work. It is important to balance those busy days with the not so busy days.
One important thing I do to help manage my time is sitting down at my desk on Sunday and planning my week the best I can. I will look at my class schedule and see if I have any exams, tests or quizzes. I will make time in the week to study for those. I will write down my schedule on my whiteboard, along with the tasks for each day, and cross out each day when it is over. It makes me feel more relaxed when I go up to my board and cross out a busy day. I also write down my assignments in my hand held planner. This planner helps me stay organized in a simpler way.
Even though doing your work, studying and staying organized is important for success, it is also important that you are making time for yourself and nourishing social connections. Hanging out with friends or family makes you keep those connections and allows you to escape the stress of school for a moment.
Giving yourself a reward at the end of the week, even if it’s not busy, is like a “thank you” to yourself. It could be either treating yourself to dinner, getting ice cream, or taking a nap (my personal favorite). It creates a motivation, an incentive, to complete your tasks.
I know life may feel overwhelming when you see the tasks ahead of you, but when you have a plan, it can help. It can be as easy as making a list, writing those tasks on a whiteboard or in your planner, or spreading the tasks across the days of the week. Starting out with good time management will build your confidence and you will realize that you are able to handle bigger tasks that come along in your future.
Written by: Maren Spence