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Stress is a college student's constant companion. Between heavy course loads, labs, papers and projects, studying, and perhaps part-time or full-time jobs, a big stress provoker among college students is time management.
Now, as the end of April and thus the end of the semester approaches, students are gearing up for final papers and exams, and for some, graduating and preparing to venture out to the real world. Add to that mix sports, extracurricular activities and socialization, and time seems to disappear. It is no wonder students can quickly suffer from stress if they do not learn effective time management tips.A recent search of ‘stress and time management’ in the book section of Amazon.com showed 406 results and another dozen or so in the DVD and VHS section. Look at any popular women’s, health and fitness magazines in the racks at the grocery or convenience stores. Next to dieting, stress busting and time-saving are usually the next most popular cover articles.
Since many of these books and articles are written by physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists and professors, it would stand to reason there would/should be university seminars or courses on time management and stress reduction. There are; ironically, students can’t even find the time to attend them. Thus stressed out students become stressed out adults.Managing ones time may a daunting prospect. It may be scary to find that it actually takes time to manage time, and the steps differ little between the high school or college student, the medical resident, the business person or even the harried housewife.Some simple time management and stress reducing techniques include:-Take the time to assess your to-do list and prioritize your tasks. In most cases, time management issues are the result of poor planning and procrastination. Whether you put off a dreaded task for the last minute or tackle it head on to get it out of the way, consider how either of those choices could impact the completion of a more urgent or important task. -Make a schedule, allotting time to your tasks. Perhaps there was some merit to the kiddy song “This is the Way We Wash Our Clothes (on a Monday morning).” Schedule your time like that, if possible. Monday = reading/laundry/bills, Tuesday = library/studying/cleaning, etc.-Organize, organize, organize-your thoughts, your tasks, your supplies and your surroundings. It’s great to have that to do list and schedule at the ready, but not if you are having to waste a half hour fumbling through stacks of papers on a desk or retracing steps to find your car keys or wallet. -Learn how to set out the ‘do not disturb’ sign. Turn off your cell phone, sign out of instant messenger, close doors. Try your best not to allow interruptions.-Do nothing. Seriously, do nothing. Take some time (10-15 minutes) in each day just to sit back and relax. This will help to learn the importance of the last point which is:-Schedule time for yourself. Include some leisure time to reduce stress. This does not only include fun and vacations, de-stress your meal and sleep time and learn not to feel guilty.
This post is brought to you by Argosy University. Drawing upon our more than 30-year history of granting degrees in professional psychology, Argosy University has developed a curriculum that focuses on interpersonal skills and practical experience alongside academic learning. Because getting a degree is one thing. Succeeding, quite another.
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