It doesn’t take a degree in brain surgery to know that students need good time management but, especially for nontraditional students whose lives are already jam-packed, where is a good place to start?
The answer to this question
Is best answered by the one who knows best…You!
Where Can You Shave…I Mean Save…Time?
The first word is probably a more accurate description.
The thing about time management when you have a spouse, kids, and/or a job is that you literally will have to shave a little here and a little there.
Combine those errands, get out of the grocery store faster, and cut down on those drycleaner runs.
Those little shavings will add up to…unbelievable as it sounds…the time needed for studying or attending those classes.
What Can You Eliminate…Or at Least Cut Back On?
If you’re working toward a career as a Nurse or Teacher and you’re really serious about making that step in your life then Yahoo can wait. Google becomes something that’s used for making things quicker in your life such as weeknight recipes, and watching YouTube videos is now reserved for figuring out how to do that statistics problem.
Know Where Your Remaining Time Commitments Lie?
Just as in handling your money, the first step is to figure out where you are spending your time on both fixed and flexible actions.
Examples of fixed actions are: attending church, attending kid’s events, and adequate sleep while examples of flexible actions include: socializing, the time spent on chores, and web surfing.
Note, I’m not saying that the flexible actions are not important…just that the amount of time spent on them may be, as the term flexible implies, adjustable. A little less this week but we can make up for it by a little more next week.
With the Flexible Actions See Where You Can Multitask
Can you combine soccer practice with walking, how about jogging with spending time with your 2 year old? My grandson lives to get in his stroller and go walking with his Ninny.
How about combining cooking with homework time? Keep on…let’s see, laundry can be going at the same time or even while we’re watching a movie?
To Sum It Up
You need to be the one to decide where to start with a time management plan. I would probably start one where you don’t even have a real problem.
Find out what you can let go of or at least spend less time doing. Of the remaining actions figure out how you can do them quicker.
Some of your fixed actions are best left in place. Church, kid’s events, sleep, and exercise are very important and should only be time-budgeted if absolutely necessary (i.e., during finals week) and then should be resumed as soon as possible.
Time management is likely something you will get quite adept at quite quickly…but it will take some planning.
Want more tips on how to get your crazy life under control? If so, then download my free ebook about Time Management and Students where you’ll find ideas for time management in several crucial areas where we all struggle.