Managing time properly may be one of life's biggest challenges – but if you formulate a routine and keep it in check you’ll find it much easier. Here are some tips to help you juggle your priorities and fit study into your daily life.
Establish what's important
To prioritise your time, make a list of all the things you normally do each week. For example:
- Other commitments (e.g. yoga, walking the dog, Friday date night).
Categorise them into non-negotiable (e.g. study, preparing meals, going to work) and negotiable tasks (e.g. social activities, housework). If you’re ever feeling stretched for time, stick to the non-negotiable tasks like study. The housework can wait.
Plan your day
Make it a habit to plan your day first thing in the morning. Write a list of everything you need to do and how long it will take. Allocating time for each task in advance will help you achieve what you need to each day.
If you don't get through your entire list in a day, don't worry. Add the uncompleted tasks to your list for the next day, and prioritise them so you can tick them off first.
Understand you’re not superhuman
Acknowledge that there is only so much you can do in 24 hours. Be honest with yourself and set aside enough hours to do your jobs properly. Factor in time for breaks and interruptions, and don’t be hard on yourself if you don’t manage to achieve everything you planned.
Make use of free time
If you commute to work every day, study while you're on the train. Or reply to emails using your smartphone while waiting for appointments. It’s amazing how much those spare minutes add up each day, so make full use of each one.
Learn how to use time management tools
From a simple scheduling program like Google Calendar, to more advanced time-tracking software such as Harvest, there are plenty of online tools you can use to keep track of your time. Ask your tutors or peers what they would recommend, or search for highly rated tools and apps on the internet.
Be disciplined about using your study time effectively. Ban yourself from Facebook and Twitter, and turn off your mobile while you study. To reduce temptations, remove social website links from the main bookmarks bar on your computer, and place them in a less-visible folder. You can reward yourself with leisure time later.
Read other study tips such as Online learning: Skills for success and Study smarter, not harder.
For more information, contact a SEEK Learning consultant today.
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