Sonia Herbert

Psychotherapy and Counselling

Effective time management

Tips and suggestions…

TO DO lists are really good to help you remember what needs doing and to help you feel good when you start ticking off things you have completed

Steps to making to-do lists

Write a list of activities that you want or need to accomplish today
Remember to prioritise and list, or number, the most important tasks first
Are there any activities that you can accomplish at the same time?How long do you anticipate it will take you to get the task done?

Use a planner… a planner can be an effective and easy way to help you organise your time.  Choose one that is easy for you to carry around and one which suits you. Commit to checking/updating daily and try to include your daily to-do list in your planner
 A long term calendar is helpful for you to write important dates like exams and assignment due dates. Keep it where you can see it… by your desk, at the front of your folder… etc…

Time management tips

Be flexible. Always leave some free-time for last minute additions.
Avoid marathon study sessions. A regular couple of hours each day will help you remember more than eight hours at once. Schedule your time so you do not pack it all into one or two days
Scheduling time will help you avoid procrastination and reduce stress. Keep a book or some notes with you in case you find yourself waiting for any reason; between classes, sitting on the bus etc…
Learn to say ‘no’. Instead of ‘I really should study’, say ‘you caught me in the middle of something important, I’ll catch you later’ or ‘I can’t go out tonight but I can go on Saturday’

Understand procrastination
When do you procrastinate? What do you find yourself doing instead of revising, working on an assignment, etc…?
This could lead to increased stress and poorer performance.

Reducing procrastination
Break tasks into smaller and more manageable tasks. Don’t overwhelm yourself with large tasks.  Break them down into steps to be completed rather than one large daunting task.  Try to keep each step to something that can be accomplished in 30 minutes or less. 
Use your own internal clock to plan your days.  If you are most productive in the morning, plan the most important tasks at that time.  If you seem to lag during the morning but get into gear by mid-afternoon, plan accordingly in order to be most efficient.
Choose one task to do early in the morning.  This way, you can feel that you have accomplished something, no matter what may happen the rest of the day.

A question …
Think of the achievements you are most proud of and that have added most value to your life and work. When you were working on them, how many of them fell into the ‘important’ but not ‘urgent’ category?
•    How do you feel at the end of a day when you have made even a little progress towards that goal?
•    How do you feel at the end of a day that has been totally swamped by others’ demands and urgent tasks?
•    What difference would it make to your life if you devoted more of your time to ‘important’ but not ‘urgent’ work?


Confidential Counselling and Psychotherapy in Bewdley | Worcestershire

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