Time Management

With the winter holidays coming to an end and having to get back into the mindset of university, we wanted to provide you with some tips to manage your time better. 

To many of us it may seem like we don’t have enough time in the day to accomplish all that we strive for. Meanwhile for others 24 hours seem to be enough to efficiently achieve their goals and even have a lot of freetime. The secret behind this is good time management. 

Time management has to do with organizing and planning your time, and it refers specifically to effectively dividing the time that you have between the different activities that you want to complete. 

There are multiple benefits that come along with a better management of your time. Some of these are stress relief, better work-life balance, the achievement of your goals, and a boost in self-confidence.

On the other hand, having poor time management has negative effects such as a poor workflow, low quality of work, and a lot of wasted time. 

Here are some tips for successful time management

  • Set goals. The SMART criteria can be used to ensure that these goals are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely. Especially, you have to make sure you set daily goals that are achievable in the time frame that you have. 

  • Be organized. Writing down important deadlines on a calendar or agenda can help you keep track of long-term goals and can help you plan ahead. Do not forget to write to-do lists not only for what you have to do overall, but also when for each day. 

  • Prioritize your tasks and appointments overall and for each day. Then, work on the most important tasks first and when these are achieved, you can work on the next important one. By doing this, it might make you realize that sometimes you do not have time to work on another task. 

  • Plan the most important tasks for when you are most motivated. Some people may be early birds who have the most energy in the mornings but others might feel the most motivated once the sun sets. Learn when you are the most productive and dedicate that time for the main tasks. 

  • Schedule breaks. It is recommended to take a break at least after 90 minutes of work, as after this amount of time the brain draws on emergency reserves of energy to keep us working.

  • Schedule free time and fun activities, too. Do not forget that no one can work 24/7 and stay happy and healthy while doing so. 

  • Eliminate distractions. If your biggest distraction is being on your phone, there are multiple time management apps that help you stay focused on your work, such as RescueTime and Freedom. 

  • Put a time limit on tasks. Setting a time constraint will improve your focus and ensure that the amount of energy you put into a task will be enough to complete it in the amount of time you set.

  • Plan more time than needed for the tasks. If you always plan a bit longer for each task than the time you would actually need to complete it, you end up having a lot less pressure on yourself and in case something comes up that becomes priority number one, you still have enough time to accomplish your original goals. 

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