Since the first year of college, we’ve been told that managing our time was key. Coming up with a plan of action and not waiting till the last minute to do things. I always thought it was just something that they say, to encourage us to do better. I brushed it off, not thinking twice about it and went along doing things my way. Little did I know, I was totally wrong.

The first time I came to this realization was the beginning of my junior year. This is usually the time where students are deep into our major, taking on more responsibilities, internships and so on. I too had a packed schedule.

I was a commuter last year, traveling 45 minutes to West Chester everyday, juggling three art courses (which is VERY time consuming) plus my other ones, going to work straight after class, working till close, then heading to ultimate frisbee which in the winter was 9-11 PM. Oh, and did I mention a 45 minute ride home? You can say I was exhausted by the end of the day.

I wasn’t used to this kind of schedule, and was not prepared for new responsibilities I faced my junior year. I was always moving, not stopping for anyone or anything, and life began to feel out of control. With having such a laid-back freshman and sophomore year, I felt overwhelmed and worried. I eventually had a mental breakdown, due to the lack of sleep and the stress.

Although this was a rough start to my junior year, taking stress management with Professor Debi Dunn saved my sanity.

The course was a reminder that we students have chaotic, busy schedules especially towards the end of our college years. One of the things I re-learned to get through these tough, packed days was to plan . I thought this was an impossible task to plan out my entire day, from start to finish for the week.

It seemed pointless and time consuming. I gave it a try, having it be part of an assignment for the class. A few weeks in, reflecting, my stress level had decreased. Difficult tasks became easier, I didn’t feel rushed throughout the day, and procrastination wasn’t a problem. from that moment on, I have made a commitment to myself to plan the week out, giving the time I need for not only the tasks that need to be completed, but the time I need for myself.

It is important to use your time wisely and to the upperclassmen who may have forgotten, make this change now, rather than later. It can change your quality of life.

Courtney Potts is a fifth-year student majoring in professional studies work with minors in studio art and journalism. She can be reached at CP763356@wcupa.edu.

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