Time Management Tricks to Help you find more time and enjoy the time you find
Wait a minute. Teens, don’t you spend your entire school life trying to avoid “Fs” on assignments and tests and papers and…gasp, report cards? True. But when it comes to time management, I’ve noticed that teens are struggling more than ever before. There’s never enough time for everything you want and need to do.
We are here to help. We promise, if you follow our 3 F guidelines, you’ll find more time. Your stress level will likely go down. You’ll enjoy the time you do spend with friends and family, or doing your favorite hobbies. And…you’ll might find you’re more successful in school.
Hold up – it’s really that easy? Three guidelines? No. It’s not easy. Time management takes work. But once you start, it becomes a new way of living and thinking.
So, what are the 3 Fs of time management?
We are starting with what might be the most difficult trick to time management. But it’s a simple concept: if you do less, you’ll have more time.
What this doesn’t mean – slacking on work and studying less. Not being involved in any extra curricular activities. Being a couch potato (or computer/device/phone potato.)
What it does mean – sitting down and deciding which are the top two or possibly three activities that mean the most to you. Do those. It means not doing everything. It means saying no, too. If you’ve committed to being in a school play and the rehearsals are a few times a week, then it’s not reasonable for you to also play two other sports, take music lessons, lead at a youth group, and so on…
Choose the best and filter out the rest. It’s okay. There will be time for other activities later on.
When you do less but choose the very best, you can focus and truly give your all. You’re not as distracted, tired, and you’ll have more time to get your school work done, too.
This also applies to events. If you have a game in the morning and you are invited to two parties and a movie with friends at night, that’s too much for one day. Especially if you have homework or papers, too. Choose. If you try to be present for every event physically, you’ll be present for none of them, emotionally and mentally.
If you try to attend every event all the time, you’ll probably find that you really aren’t enjoying any of them. And that’s not fun!
Are you always stressed in the morning, barely making it out the door? Try forecasting. On a big scale, this time management trick involves you sitting down briefly to look at your whole week. What needs to get done? What’s due? What events or shows or games are scheduled? Then, you can work in your filtering guideline and trim if you feel your week is looking too busy.
On a smaller scale, try forecasting the next morning’s events before you go to bed. To be less rushed, choose and lay out your entire outfit. Pick your hairstyle if you spend too much time deciding whether to flat iron or braid. Gather all of your books and school supplies and organize your backpack at night. If you pack your lunch, prep everything the night before, too. What will happen? Maybe you can sleep a bit longer, enjoy a real breakfast, and start your day without scurrying around trying to locate items.
Another guideline that’s simply stated but hard to do. Front-loading means – if it can be done early, do it early. What does this look like? Here are some examples.
If you know you’re going to have to write a paper in two weeks on The Civil War, start your research early. If you find yourself with free time but that paper is looming, do a little bit of work on it before you have to. Then, when you have to, you will have already begun! You’ll finish earlier and have more time for your fun activities.
Do you have to do science projects? If so, they are usually assigned way in advance of their due date. Instead of thinking you have tons of time and waiting until the last couple of weeks to start, start right away. Do a little work each weekend and you will never work all weekend.
If your week is filled with practices and games, bring your textbooks home over the weekend and complete some of your assignments ahead of time.
These are just a few examples of how front-loading works. Try it. We promise, if you sacrifice a little of your free time to prep some upcoming chores or assignments, you’ll end up with much more time later on. Everyone else will be cramming, stressing, and staying up late to finish. You’ll be done and can relax and do the things you want to do.
Who’s ready to try the 3 Fs? If these work for you, let us know!