Meeting deadlines for work and school can seem overwhelming. Managing your time will help you to be more organized, get more done, and will help you feel better! Here are some suggestions for maximizing the time you have available:
Set goals. Think about what you need and want to do with your time. From this, you can set your goals, which may help you to manage your time more effectively.
Project plan. Write down steps needed complete the project and list the order in which you can do them.
Use a planner to see the shape of your day, week and month ahead. Write down appointments, homework, or things you have to do in a planner or electronic calendar to help you to keep track of what's going on. When you can look ahead a day or see what’s coming up in a week, you can do little things to be better prepared. Some people really like the act of crossing things off their list, so even a simple daily to-do list can help you.
Turn the phone and Internet off! You may not realize how distracting your phone and Internet can be. Try set periods when your phone and Internet are completely off. If you need these tools in order to accomplish your task (like writing a paper that you need to research), try breaking up the task into smaller steps and time each step so you don’t get sidetracked. Also, at the very least, you can turn off Notifications, so texts and app messages don’t interrupt you when you are trying to concentrate.
Got a minute? Be productive with it. If you have a few minutes of idle time – waiting for your lunch to heat up in the microwave, waiting at a red light, during a tv commercial – think about something small you can do to support your goals. If you can gather those minutes and use them productively, you’ll have more time for yourself later.
Be flexible. Sometimes situations change and you may need to re-adjust your goals or work plan to fit in with the changes.
Learn from others. Lots of people struggle with time management. Talk to people about what works for them – you could learn a good tip!
Talk to someone. If you continue to feel overwhelmed and it’s impacting your mood, sleep patterns or causing lots of stress, it’s time to talk to someone. Parents, teachers, counselors and doctors can help.
Procrastination. Savings tasks for later becomes a habit that will increase your stress and decrease your success. You won’t produce your finest work, can become sleep deprived, and possibly miss out on something that pops up last minute. Be firm with yourself and don’t let distractions keep you from completing those tasks you know need to be done today.
Acknowledgement: This fact sheet was originally developed by youth and staff at ReachOut.com, a website that helps teens
get through tough times.
Special Thanks: Rebekka Meyer, Project Director at FirstPic, Inc., has 13 years of program and administrative experience in youth development, education, and government programs. She has served Boys & Girls Clubs of America affiliates as an employee in Pine Ridge, SD and Lower Brule, SD, as a National Training Associate, and as a nationwide onsite training and technical assistance provider. Additionally, through a partnership with the National Congress of American Indians, she wrote and piloted the T.R.A.I.L. Diabetes Prevention program curriculum for Native American youth. Rebekka is an alumnus of AmeriCorps VISTA and AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps. She holds Bachelors in Political Science from Truman State University in Missouri and a Masters in International Business from St. Mary's University of Minnesota.
Many articles in this section were adapted from WeRNative.org, a website for Native Youth by Native Youth