High school is a busy time. Between classes and homework, sports and co-curricular activities, free time can be hard to find. While participating in a variety of activities can be fun, feeling overwhelmed by commitments is the opposite. We’re all familiar with late-night study sessions and last-minute essay edits. The panicky feeling that comes with unpreparedness is not a fun experience. Juggling a busy schedule with a variety of commitments can be tough, but shouldn’t end in sleepless nights of cramming for exams. Read on for some time management tips to keep your stress low and your productivity high.
Make a to-do list
Creating a list of all your tasks is an important first step in figuring out how to manage a busy schedule. Whether you use a calendar, journal, or the notes app in your phone, writing down everything you need to do is a great way to clearly keep track of what you need to focus on each day, week, or month. Each time you finish a task, cross it off – and watch your list dwindle as you accomplish your goals. Seeing all the things you’ve achieved will keep you motivated, and you’ll feel a fantastic sense of fulfillment when your entire list is complete.
Set reasonable goals
While keeping track of all your tasks can be helpful for time management, it can also be overwhelming. In order to stay on top of your tasks without feeling stressed about how much you need to do, break each task down into smaller, more attainable pieces. For example, instead of trying to tackle an entire project in one night, separate it into steps. If you make time to brainstorm, research, write, revise and edit a paper, it will be easier to tackle each piece of the project instead of trying to do everything at once.
Each week, take some time to review your upcoming deadlines and commitments. Lay everything out in a planner or a calendar on your phone, so you have everything in one place. Plan your study schedule based on how much time you’ll have during the week. If you know you’re busy volunteering Wednesday afternoon, plan to start studying for you history test a little earlier. This way you won’t be caught awake in the middle of the night cramming for an exam.
Take time for yourself
Even if it’s just a few minutes a day, be sure that you take time each day to check in with yourself. Whether it’s taking 15 minutes to go for a walk outside or taking a break to meditate or practice yoga between papers, give yourself time to rest and reset. Prioritizing self-care will ensure that you stay aware of your well-being even during the busiest times. Don’t forget to sleep, too! You will be most productive when your mental, emotional, and physical health are being paid the attention they deserve.
Understanding and practicing time management in high school is one of the most beneficial skills students can learn. By figuring out how to balance academics, sports and activities, social engagements, and self-care, students set themselves up for success in both university and their future careers. Time management is not an easy thing to master, so by building healthy habits in high school, students will be well-equipped to juggle a variety of commitments throughout their lives.