Manage Your Time, Control Your Stress

BY ALANA SANTOS // APRIL 1, 2015 //

Do you have a hard time managing your time? Do you often find yourself stressed out?

Jana Jasper, author of Take Back Your Time, writes: “People talk too fast. We’re always in a rush. We start things and don’t finish them and are constantly nagged by the idea that we’ve forgotten to do something, but we’re note sure what it is.”

This is precisely college. According to a 2007 study by University of Calgary psychologist Piers Steel, 80 to 95 percent of college students procrastinate when it comes to their schoolwork, and that creates stress. Here are some tips to manage your time better and to avoid the common pitfalls suffered by many college students.

Managing your stress is a surefire way to improve your grades, and happiness. // PHOTO BY HELDER C JR, creative commons

Managing your stress is a surefire way to improve your grades, and happiness. // PHOTO BY HELDER C JR, creative commons

Stay Organized
A planner or a desk calendar is an easy way to mark down and keep track of all your classes, activities and assignments. Creating a to-do list also allows you to prioritize what needs to be accomplished each day. Put your most important tasks at the top of the list and accomplish those first.

Keeping track of everything in your busy day will help relieve the stress of forgetting something or missing an assignment.

Plan Ahead
Check your course syllabus, practice schedules and club meeting information, and find out important dates. For assignments, figure out how much time you will need to do it—and do it well—and then plan backward.

Budget Your Time
Print out your weekly class schedule. Add in times for the necessities (eating, studying/homework, the gym, sports activities, etc.). Once everything is labeled, you will be able to find space for free time to binge watch Netflix and hang out with friends.

Don’t Spread Yourself Too Thin
Learn to say “no.” Although getting involved on campus is strongly recommended, you don’t need to go out and join every club and organization. Be sure you have enough time to relax.

If your day starts at 8:30 a.m. and ends at 8:30 p.m., with little to no breaks in between, you might have taken on too much. Overextending yourself will result in less precision when accomplishing tasks and you may become sloppy in your work.

Take a Break
College can be stressful for a whole bunch of reasons. It is important to remember to take a break every once in a while and give your mind and body some much-needed free time. Take a step out of the dorm room or the library and join a yoga class at the Student Center. Or take a snack break in between homework and studying (After all, “stressed” is “desserts” spelled backward!). A short break helps clear your mind and better prepare you for your next task.

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