One thing I realized at the beginning of freshmen year was that if I wanted to get good grades in school, work multiple jobs, participate in student organizations, and have a social life, I needed to learn how to manage my time. Though it may seem daunting to balance so many activities, I learned how to effectively use my time so that I could do everything I wanted to do in college. Here are some of the strategies I now use:
1. Keep track of your commitments: Assignments, meetings, and deadlines can pile up if you don’t organize them. I use an agenda to write down all my homework assignments and due dates, and I schedule my classes, work shifts, and meetings using iCal and then sync them to my phone. It keeps me organized and reminds me to stay up to date with my assignments.
2. Prioritize: Each week, I mentally prioritize my to-do list. It can be overwhelming when you have multiple assignments and commitments in a week, but it’s important to focus your energy on the most important tasks–like studying for a midterm, writing a paper, or applying for an internship. I always feel really accomplished when I can cross a big assignment off my list, which brings me to number 3…
3. Make lists: I always make a daily list of the things I need to accomplish by the end of my day in my agenda. As I accomplish each task, I cross it off my list to keep myself accountable.
4. Schedule breaks: When I know I will have to devote much of my week to studying or doing work, I schedule in set times for having fun. When I know I am going to see my friends later on, I’m more motivated to finish my work.
Of course, everyone has different personal time management strategies, so figure out what works best for you! Good luck with your busy schedules!