There will be plenty of opportunities to procrastinate once midterms roll around – no need to start now. Before assignments start backlogging your planner and even before classes begin, preparing for the long haul that is the school year plays a big role in making it through successfully.
The reestablishing of time-management skills is the most difficult, but beneficial, aspect of the transition from vacation to vocation. Efficiently balancing all obligations – both in school and at home – requires a mental dexterity that unfortunately does not come with an on/off switch that activates as the summer sun dims. It takes a conscious effort.
So, to prevent workloads from working students too hard, here are a few time-management tips for back to school.
The best way to learn how to swim is to jump in the water. Now, that’s not to say that picking up everything from equestrian club to basket weaving will improve time management skills, but what definitely won’t is being satisfied with inactivity. Having an active schedule will force more efficient time management planning and practices, while keeping energy levels high and the mind sharp.
Cramming for tomorrow’s exam? Pulling an all-nighter? Procrastination happens. However, there’s a fine line between procrastination and pure laziness: procrastinating due to work overload is different than putting things off because there is ‘plenty of time.’ Procrastination should hinge on priority – where the most value in certain assignments lies, and where some assignments can afford to be placed on the backburner. Be realistic with priorities, and don’t be afraid to start slow and early on big projects.
Leave No Task Unwritten
Mental planners would be cool if they worked. It’s a shame they don’t. Keeping track of tasks in a planner, calendar, or to-do list will help prioritize tasks, de-clutter the brain, and get things done. Try Apps like Wunderlist and Evernote to stay on track.
Work During Energy Peaks
Nobody works at a hundred percent all hours of the day. Find the most productive time of day and use it to the fullest. Intensely focused work during periods of high energy and alertness will help ensure those one-hour long tasks don’t end up taking three.