How to Balance Your Time Wisely

  • By: Jaeda Wagner

Agenda book and computer with clock

As a high school student aspiring to do big things in the world, your schedule is probably very demanding. Fortunately, a few tips to help you manage your time wisely are listed below.

Identify your current time management skills

While you may currently feel as though you are managing your time well, be sure to keep track of how well you are spending your it. Be aware of the 20 minutes you spend on your technology before you begin your homework and the other time spent doing unnecessary tasks. Allow yourself a mental break when needed, but do not allow yourself to get caught up in the moment of relaxation (at least until your are done with your work).

Set your goals for the day, week, month, or even year

In the morning of a new day, or at the beginning of a week, month, or year, take the time to set your goals for that time period. These goals can be big or small, but whatever you do, make them SMART goals. Check out MindTools for more information on making goals.

Goals should be SMART:

S: Specific

M: Measurable

A: Achievable

R: Relevant

T: Time based

Write your given tasks or plans on a to-do-list

When you are given a task or you have an idea to do something, immediately write it down or put it in your cell phone’s to-do-list. Be sure to write even the most mundane tasks such as brushing your teeth, and of course the more important tasks such as studying for the ACT or starting a community project.

Prioritize your work

After you have written your to-do-list, put your tasks in order from most to least important. Be sure to do the important tasks that will take up the most time first, or split up the larger tasks into a few days or weeks if time permits.

Rid yourself of distractions (until your to-do-list is complete)

After prioritizing your tasks, get to work! In order to use your time effectively, though, you must get rid of your distractions. Before you start your to-do-list, take care of the things that could be on your mind while working if you are able to. After that, turn off your cell phone, go to a quiet room, and begin working productively.

Maintain your overall well-being

It can be easy to get caught up in the busy schedule a high school education can demand at times. Take time to care for your physical, mental, and emotional health. Sleep for 8-9 hours, exercise daily, eat right, and spend time with your loved ones.

Be prepared

Put the dates of events you need to be at in your calendar, and do not allow them to sneak up on you. It is easy to forget about a deadline or a meeting, so keep track of your tasks and prepare for them using your time wisely!

About the Author:

Jaeda is a Torch & Laurel Scholar currently a junior attending an early college high school in North Carolina. She is planning on studying molecular and cellular biology where she will research the effects nutrition can have on a human bodies physical health and cognitive development. While not working on her education, you will find her at CrossFit, reading, and spending time with her family.

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