If you’re currently pursuing a degree, you know how hard it is to have so many responsibilities to balance. Even forgetting one small thing could cost you your grade. So how do you successfully keep up with the fast pace of being a student?
All it takes is a little bit of planning and a well-organized schedule.
Get a Planner
Writing down your plans, whether on a paper or digital calendar, helps solidify your memory. The only way to guarantee that you won’t forget an important date is having it recorded somewhere. Committing to a planner is essential so that all of your scheduling can be done in one place that you can easily access.
Check Your Syllabus…Again
Everyone takes the first week of the semester to look through all of their syllabi, picking out the most important exam dates and then throwing it away. But be careful that you don’t only check it once- it might change over the course of the semester! Professors may change due dates or add extra credit assignments, so take the time once or twice a month to skim through your classes and see if there’s any new information. Keeping an organized schedule means staying on top of any pivots that you might need to adjust to.
Know Your Habits
When you’re planning ahead, it’s easy to get caught up in a fantasy land of idealism. But don’t forget to be realistic when you’re arranging a daily schedule. If you’re a night-owl, you’re probably not going to wake up all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at sunrise ready to do a morning workout routine. If you’re an early bird, you’re likely not going to have the energy to go out with friends at 11:00 pm. Be honest with yourself about the times of day that you function best so that you can create a schedule that fits your lifestyle.
Sometimes, things happen that we can’t plan. When you’re balancing your schedule, it’s crucial to create margin time so that you have room for any last-minute assignments or family emergencies that come your way. Being flexible also gives you a chance to take small breaks between scheduled activities. Maintaining margin gives you the capacity to face unexpected things and recoup from planned things.
Balancing all of your to-do’s doesn’t have to be an impossible task. Get to know your patterns, and plan your day in a way that works best for you. Before you start, try making a list of all of the things that need to be done each day. You can then categorize each task, delegating those categories to different days of the week so your schedule doesn’t feel so overwhelming. These simple steps can make all the difference in building your scheduling skills!