The Commons
Lady with Day Planner"Time is the coin of your life. It is the only coin you have, and you can determine how it will be spent. Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you.”

The following tips will help you with managing your time wisely.  You can also check out the training mods at University of Delaware





10 Time Management Tips arrow View
Use a day-timer and "To Do" list. Paper or electronic, it doesn't matter as long as you have one place where you record all your deadlines, appointments, due dates, etc. A “To Do” list gives you all your commitments together, so you can prioritize them.

Set achievable goals. Decide what you would like to achieve in all the different aspects of your life: student, employee/employer, family, recreation, spirituality. You’re more likely to get where you want to go if you decide the destination first!

Prioritize according to your goals. Don’t fall into the trap of getting just the unimportant stuff done. Prioritize your “To Do” list so that the things that take you towards your goals get done first.

Ask instructors for help. Know when to give in and get help - save yourself time and get good advice.

Go to all your classes. It saves time to be there instead of trying to teach yourself from someones notes.

Don't rewrite notes; condense them! You can rewrite notes as mindlessly as writing lines for punishment. Make rewriting useful by condensing the material, putting it in your own words.

Break down large tasks into manageable chunks . A task like an essay can be tackled in parts: brainstorming topics, initial research, rough draft, and revising. Schedule your own sub-deadlines for these so the final deadline doesn't sneak up!

Find those bonus minutes. There are available minutes while waiting for class to start, after finishing lunch, waiting for laundry, etc. Use those minutes to learn terms on index cards, to organize notes, or to review notes.

Check your time wasters. Do a time audit to see where you're wasting time. Is it the phone, TV, novels, etc? Keep track of your time use in 15 min intervals for 2 weeks, and add it up. You might be surprised!

Schedule study time. If you write it down, it's way more likely to happen! Several sessions of one to two hour blocks work best.

Bonus Tip: Is this a piano? This saying comes from carpenters - if you're building a doghouse, why put in the effort needed for a grand piano? Put the appropriate effort into any task!
Dealing with Procrastination arrow View
Get it done today! Putting things off is like pushing snow with a snow-shovel. The jobs are just piling up waiting to swamp you another day. Be kind to yourself - get it done now.

Trade time, don't steal it! You've scheduled study time, but an amazing opportunity arises? Trade time, don't just skip studying. Write in your day-timer when the traded time will be rescheduled.

Keep it realistic. Find out if you are trying to do too much. Do a time audit, and if all your time is being used towards your goals, then you can't schedule any more without postponing something. Don't over commit yourself.

Do the boring or hard stuff first! If you find you put off doing certain things, try scheduling them first, then reward yourself with the more enjoyable things to do afterwards.

Don't let others steal your time. Try setting your phone to take messages, or hang a sign on your door busy until 11:15 pm, to protect some interruption-free time.

Schedule some fun. Yes, you do need some fun - but you control when it happens.
How to set a goal arrow View
For a goal to be effective, it must be:

Dated - date by which you wish to achieve the goal

Achievable - its fine to stretch, but don't set impossible goals

Personal - it must be your goal, not your parents, your friends; or someone elses' goal

Positive - set a goal to strive towards, not something to run away from

Specific - means measurable. How will you know if you've reached your goal?

Example:
Goal--To get a good education; is too vague:
Effective Goal: To obtain my Diploma in Early Learning & Child Care by April 2011.