Whether students were a competent worker or a procrastinator in high school, many college students quickly learn that managing time can be the most challenging aspect of being in school. Strong time management skills is the key element to a successful college career, and it can make all the difference.Do you find yourself overwhelmed by the amount and complexity of projects and reading assignments that you have to complete for each class? Do you feel the day often flies by without you getting anything accomplished at all? Practicing effective time management will not only help to get more tasks accomplished but it will make for a healthier person and reduce ones stress level significantly.
A quick poll around West Chester’s campus of various students showed more students manage their time by using a daily planner to keep track of assignments.
Here are the Top 5 time management tips and tools to help a struggling college student with a time issue.
1. Plan each day- Often times it’s virtually impossible to remember everything. Use a system to keep track of deadlines and other obligations. Keeping a detailed calendar whether, it’s on a PDA or a daily planner, will help to eliminate the number of missed assignments.
2. Plan out time- Now that you have made a detailed calendar, the next step is to manage the amount of time to spend on each assignment.
3. Prioritize- This step is where organizational skills come into play. Write out a to-do list with the most important task at the top. It’s more effective to spend time and energy on what matters most.
4. Avoid procrastinations and distractions. For most college students this is the hardest task to overcome, though it is possible. It is really easy to put off an assignment, using the excuse, ‘I work better under pressure. I will do it the night before.’ The objective is to avoid all night study sessions, poor grades and reduce stress and anxiety. When it comes to distractions for a college student, social Web sites such as Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter are not to be considered friends. Avoid phone distractions by turning off the ringer.
5. Take responsibility for time management- While these tips may be helpful, everyone is different; some like rigid day planners, while others can deal with a simple note pad. It is ultimately up to an individual to come up with a time management system to discover what works best for them.
All in all, the best ways to manage ones time are to be organized, plan ahead, prioritize tasks, practice effective methods in what to do and be flexible. Do not overload yourself and keep motivated.
Ronni Cain is a fourth -year English major with a minor in journalism. She can be reached at RC631645@wcupa.edu.