All about IT
Time management is an essential skill to everyday life. The daily struggle to balance work and play can be a tough task if you’ve got a lot on your plate, but a little organization can go a long way toward making your schedule less hectic.
I would like to thank Noel M. from Carlsbad, Calif. for sending me this question about managing her time:
I am having a hard time balancing my school work, social life, and job. Are there any suggestions you can give me as to how I can manage my time better?
Noel M. – Carlsbad, CA.”
Well Noel, there are many things you can do about this, and you’re not alone here! Work and school can be hard to balance as it is, but throw in trying to maintain an active social life and you can have a pretty difficult task on your hands.
Something I can highly recommend that you do is to make yourself a schedule, and to practice staying on what’s called a “time budget”.
Schedules are the go-to method for time management. I know you’ve probably heard this one a thousand times, but it really does work. Planning out what you need to do during the day can help you decide how much time you can devote to all of your objectives.
For example, let’s say you’ve got a big project due for school next week, a presentation you need to finish for work tomorrow, and to top it all off you want to catch a movie with friends tonight.
Naturally, you’ll probably want to spend more time on the presentation today than your project.
Therefore, let’s say your day starts in the morning at 8:00 a.m.. School and work are done for you that night at 5:00 p.m. You give yourself maybe 30 minutes to relax and then you jump on the presentation for two hours.
Now it’s 7:30 p.m. You know the movie starts at 9:15, so you give yourself 30 minutes for your project tonight.
Now it’s 8:00, leaving you about 45 minutes to get ready, since it’s a 15 minute drive and you want to be there early.
That’s more or less how you make a schedule! They don’t need to be super strict, but they should include all that you’ll be doing that day.
Time budgeting is fairly similar to a schedule. It’s essentially the concept of thinking of your time as an actual budget, much like you would with money.
Imagine you went out with $100 to spend on food for the week. You get your shopping done and now you’re in line waiting to check out. But as you’re checking out, maybe you see a book that you’d enjoy to read. What should you do?
The right answer would be to, of course, not buy the book at this moment. You don’t have that money to spend without going outside of your budget. Well it’s the same way with time.
You only have 24 hours in a day right? You can’t spend any more time in a day than those 24 hours.
Now say you’ve devoted two hours of your day to working on a packet of schoolwork. You’re on page 24 of 30 and you have 15 minutes left. However, page 24 is going to take you at least 30 minutes.
Do not start that page today. You do not have that time to spend. That time is allotted for something else.
There are other days for you to complete that packet. Once you get into this mindset, you’ll start to realize that not everything needs to be done right now.
There are exceptions to this of course, but for the most part this is a good way to go about managing your time. You’ll find that once you establish this time budget, it’ll get easier to find out where your priorities are and where you need to budget more of your time.
So as you can see Noel, time management is all about finding out what’s important in your life and setting aside an ample amount of time for those things.
So it’s possible to go out and have a good time with your friends, but when it comes time to head back home, don’t fall into the trap of “Just one more hour!” Just politely tell your buddies that you’re on a budget.
I thank you again for your question Noel, and I hope this info is helpful to you! Keep it classy, and remember: You heard it from the Grapevine!