Many students and corporate professional believe that “time management” is an essential area for improvement. It takes time and practice to determine how to take charge of your schedule. Here are my top five time management tips that allow me to be most successful in the classroom, at my job, at my internship, and throughout my day-to-day life:
- Make A To-Do List
Everyday I wake up, make myself a cup of coffee, grab my large slab of notebook paper and create my daily to-do list. I find it helpful to take time to write down everything that I have going on during the day. It’s a visually motivating process that forces me to commit to those tasks, because as we all know, it’s all about working smarter, not harder. I challenge you to write down everything you want to accomplish during the day.
After I make my to-do list, I prioritize tasks in order from most important to least important. Why waste your time doing something that you don’t need to complete until next week, when you can be putting your energy into something that needs to be done tonight? In order to manage your time well, you must first prioritize efficiently because you want to get the most significant tasks done first. Next, associate a time limit on each task for the day so that you don’t misuse your time. The key to success is organizing your tasks in order and attaching a time limit.
- Use Your Resources
Everyone has experienced that moment of panic when you ask yourself, “How the heck am I going to get all of this done?” There is an unfortunate stigma in the working world, where asking for help is considered to be a sign of weakness. I promise you that this is not the case! When you start to feel overwhelmed, reach out to the people around you to lend you a helping hand. During my internship, my boss and co-workers would occasionally ask me to take over their assignments, because they had other pressing, time-sensitive tasks to complete.
- Eliminate Noise
Eliminate things that derail your day from being productive, such as texts, social media and email. When working on those harder tasks, turn everything off for one hour. Just try it! You will be amazed by what you can get done when you’re not checking your phone, answering a text, or dealing with problems or concerns of others.
- Just Breathe
Take a moment and breathe. Let yourself take in everything that is coming your way. Don’t let your tasks overwhelm you or cause you to panic. You always find a way to get everything done. When you become consumed with stress, anger or anxiety, your body shuts down, leaving you less time to actually complete your tasks. Staying calm, cool and collected allows me to perform as my best self and I know that I can finish all that is on my to-do list.