Time flies when you’re having fun, but does it feel like it’s flying by too fast? Of course, there’s no way to actually stretch time, but there are ways that you can maximize your efficiency so that you are making the most out of the time that you do have.
1. Have a Plan
This sounds simple enough, but with school, work, sports, meetings, and any other things you have going on in your life, coordinating a time efficient schedule can be a lot of work. Using a planner, whether it be online or on paper, is one of the best ways to keep track of when and where your daily activities are taking place and ensuring that nothing overlaps or unnecessarily takes extra time out of your day. Ariana Vanderhoop, a senior communication student, commented, “I never thought of meditating while eating or some other mundane task. It usually takes up an extra 10 minutes of my day, so I’ll have to keep that in mind.”
2. Set Goals for Yourself and Delegate
There’s nothing worse than being in a productive mood but having so much to do that you don’t know where to start and end up being so overwhelmed that you get nothing done. This has happened to me on more than one occasion, and then I end up feeling bad about how much time I’ve wasted and how behind I am on my tasks.
You can combat feeling so overwhelmed by taking the time to decide which tasks take priority and set goals for when you need to get them done. Having concrete goals will keep you on task and help you know when and where to delegate your efforts.
Delegation is another effective tool to stave off feeling too overwhelmed. Of course, this does not mean to push off your own responsibility onto others. It simply means that you do not have to do everything all on your own. If you are working on a group project in a class, recruit the help of your other group members on the assignment instead of trying to get the majority of it done on your own. This can apply at home too; if you live in a dorm or other shared space, delegate housekeeping tasks with your roommates.
3. Don’t Procrastinate
This is quite possibly the most essential step to making the most out of your time and is a lot easier said than done. It’s easy to fall into the habit of waiting until the last minute to begin or finish a task, especially ones that are seemingly easy or mundane, but procrastination is the biggest time killer.
When it comes to small tasks like watching a video for a class, organizing your schedule, or taking an online meeting, sneak them into daily tasks that don’t require much work. So, instead of scrolling through your phone while making your morning coffee, turn on that video or tune into that meeting so that your tasks are done and out of the way and don’t take up more time out of your day.
Rosalie Mercille, a freshman business student, explained, ” I procrastinate a lot, and it prevents me from being able to have a lot of actual free time for myself.”
Another way to avoid procrastination is to try to make a more productive workspace: no unnecessary screens and no other factors that may cause distraction or avoidance of the task at hand. Getting distracted by a phone or something on television will easily turn your attention away from tasks that you need to finish. Turn off the television, tuck your phone away in a drawer or in another room, and lock in on the tasks at hand.
These few but meaningful tips will help you be more efficient with your time, which will lead to a more purposeful and fulfilling life. All you need to do is get the ball rolling to kickstart your productivity and formulate a study routine that you can stick with.