Time Management for Graduate Students - Boston University
Time Management for Graduate Students Presented by Diana Lynch Writing Tutor School of Social Work [email protected] Created by Barbaranne Benjamin, Ph.D. Graduate Studies Not your undergraduate degree Undergraduate skills Graduate specialization Independent
Myths about Time Management Time management is nothing but common sense. I do well in school, so I must be managing my time effectively. It takes all the fun out of life!!! Time management? I work better
under pressure. No matter what I do, I wont have enough time! The Truth About Time Management Increases productivity. Reduces stress. Improves self-esteem. Helps achieve balance in life. Increases self-confidence Helps you reach your goals! There are 168 hours in a Week
Urgent Not Urgent Important Do Now Plan to Do Not Important Reject Resist Comfort activities, computer games, net surfing
Trivial requests from others Apparent emergencies Interruptions and distractions Scrutinize and probe demands. Help originators to re-assess. Wherever possible reject and avoid these tasks.
Chat, gossip, text, social communications Daydreaming, doodling over long breaks Unnecessary adjusting equipment Habitual comforters not true tasks.
Non-productive, de-motivational. Minimize or cease altogether. Plan to avoid them. Steps to Managing Your Time 1. Set goals 2. Set reasonable expectations (and remember that no ones perfect) 3. Make a schedule
4. Revisit and revise your plan Revisit Your Values Knowing what is most valuable to you gives direction to your life. Your energy should be oriented first toward things that reflect the values that are most important.
Examine your values to help you make time management decisions. Where to start? Set Goals! What is Important? Make your goals specific and concrete. Dont be vague. Set both long-term goals and short-term ones to support them.
Set a deadline for your goals. Integrate your goals: school, personal and career. Realize that goals change, but know which goals to stick to! From GoalsSet priorities
Whats important and what isnt? What order do things need to be done in? Once you know what your priorities are, you need to plan out a schedule for the semester, the week and the day.
Acknowledge the realities of college schedules. Planning may seem hard at first, but the more you do it, the easier and more natural it gets. Make a Schedule Set Up Your Semester Calendar Block all important set time obligations.
Block all class and lab times. Look at the syllabus for the class schedule. Note the weight of the activities. Highlight all exams and project due dates. Work backwards from exams and papers (PERT). Study time.
Time for your sanity. Organizing Your Time Set realistic goals, there are only 24 hours in a day. Use spare time to review. Study at the same time each day: make it a habit
Divide study time into manageable chunks Leave extra time at the end! Calendars Different Perspectives
The to do List Year Calendar Monthly Calendar Weekly Calendar Try it and evaluate your plan! How are you actually using your time? Which tasks were you able to do? What didnt get done?
Was your energy level appropriate? Your stress level? What changes need to be made to your weekly schedule? What are persistent time wasters? Was procrastination an issue?
Never do today what you can put off til tomorrow! Procrastination is my sin. It brings me naught but sorrow. I know that I should stop it. It fact, I will tomorrow! Forms of procrastination: Ignoring the task, hoping it will go away Underestimating
resources Telling Doing how long it will take/overestimating your abilities and yourself that poor performance is okay/insisting on perfection something else that isnt very important Believing that repeated minor delays wont hurt you Talking about rather than doing it
Putting all your work on only one part of the task Becoming paralyzed when having to make choices How to Overcome Procrastination Win the mental battle by committing to being on time.
Set and keep deadlines. Organize, schedule & plan. Divide a big job into smaller ones. Find a way to make a game of your work or make it fun. Reward yourself when youre done.
Tell your friends and roommates to remind you of priorities and deadlines. Learn to say no to time wasters. Tackle Time Wasters
Learn to recognize when youre wasting time. Decide what you need to do and can realistically do. Learn how to say NO when you dont have time. Return calls at your convenience. The phone is a major time killer. Learn to say I cant talk right now. Ill get back to you. Wasting time is often linked to a lack of self-discipline. Ask yourself, Do I really need to do this or not? Learn to say No! Avoid the temptation to socialize when youve scheduled work.
If friends ask you to join them last minute, decline outright, but ask if you could get together later in the week. Socializing is important when you dont have other things to worry about! Study somewhere you wont be tempted to chat, watch movies or YouTube, or use social utilities like Facebook.
Texts are a major distraction. REVISE and PREVIEW: Staying on top of things Immediately note all changes. Exam/Paper due date revisions Meeting additions/cancellations Work schedule changes Upcoming visitors, etc., etc Preview the upcoming week making any necessary adjustments.
Preview each day to see what might happen Review
Time and energy management can make you more productive and reduce your stress level. The Three Steps Set goals Make a schedule Revisit and revise your plan Be tough with your time. Actively avoid procrastination and time wasters. Learn to say no to distractions. Employ a variety of time management strategies to maximize your time. Relax and enjoy the extra time that youve discovered! Enjoy your time as a graduate student!
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