Time Management Tips for Busy Students

If you are a highschool student prepping for university, you’re busy. You’ve got college applications, homework, exams, extracurriculars, volunteering and/or work, not to mention friends and family to spend time with. So, how are you supposed to balance it all? 

Time management can feel overwhelming and impossible, but with a few simple techniques you can take control of your time in order to get better grades without feeling like you’re drowning. 

Stick to a Schedule

It’s really easy to waste time if you don’t have a set schedule. If you’ve told yourself “I’ll finish my essay today,” the non-specificity of that makes it easy to procrastinate all morning and afternoon and before you know it, it’s nighttime and starting work on that essay seems pointless, so you tell yourself you’ll do it tomorrow. Sound familiar? Instead of falling into the procrastination trap, make a specific schedule that includes what time you’ll work on which tasks and when you’ll take breaks, and stick to it.

Prioritize Your To-Do List

Once a week or so, make a list of everything you want to get done this week. Include homework, studying, social obligations, extracurricular activities, and anything else that you have to do. Then go through the list with a different coloured pen and label every item A,B,C, or D priority, with A being the most important and D being the least. Once you’ve done that, schedule in your A and B priority items first, then go through your C and D priority items. Can any of those be pushed to next week? Can any of them be removed from your to-do list altogether? Doing this helps you realize which tasks you need to complete first instead of just getting overwhelmed by how much is on your list.

Put Self Care First

If you’re not making time to take care of yourself, you’re not going to perform well in other areas and you will end up spending more time on tasks because you’re not at your best. Make sure that you’re getting at least 8 hours of sleep every night, eat a nutritious diet, and make time for fun activities that bring you joy.

Reward Yourself

A little incentive goes a long way. Set up little rewards for yourself whenever you complete goals. This can be something as simple as indulging in a chai latte at your favourite cafe as a reward for finishing your math homework or going to see a movie with your friends once you finish a first draft of your college essay. When you have a reward to look forward to, even a small one, you’ll feel more motivated to get your task done.

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