Certain points in the school year, such as the start or end of a semester, can be exciting times for setting goals and making plans. But when you have a lot on your plate, getting everything done on time can be a challenge. Prioritizing your tasks and setting deadlines for yourself will keep you on track and help you feel more in control of your workload.
Here are some strategies you can implement to manage your time more effectively. (Scroll down for a prioritization worksheet you can download to get started.)
Knowing your priorities helps you stay focused and finish tasks more efficiently. When deciding the order in which you will complete tasks, think about how important and urgent they are. You can use a modified Eisenhower Matrix as a starting point: categorize the tasks you need to complete, listing them in the appropriate boxes based on importance and urgency.
The next step is to list your tasks in order.
- Important and urgent: do these tasks first
- Important but less urgent: do these tasks second
- Less important but urgent: do these tasks third
- Less important and less urgent: do these tasks last or delete them from the list
Setting deadlines is an important step in ensuring you successfully accomplish your goals on time. Start by estimating how long each task on your list will take. Think about how much time you've needed to complete similar tasks in the past. Based on the amount of available time you have each day, set realistic deadlines for yourself, keeping in mind the time you must set aside for your other commitments.
After completing each task, reflect on your original time estimates. Did you underestimate or overestimate how long the task would take? If so, you may need to revise your future deadlines and plans. The more you practice, the more accurate and efficient you will become.
ArborBridge tutors are trained to help students build their time management skills and stay on top of their academic and other commitments. To learn more, reach out to us here.
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