The Power of the Planner : A Guide to Managing Your Time

From your first day of college until the day you graduate, you will be juggling many different things. This article will teach you how to save yourself from wasted time and unnecessary stress!

By Mackenzie Roberts — November 21, 2022


The Power of the Planner : A Guide to Managing Your Time

Managing your time in college can be very stressful. You might be working a job or playing a sport while trying to attend your classes and do your homework. Being a college student means you are always busy, and there is always something to be done. The good news is that spending a few minutes mapping out your schedule and prioritizing the list of things you need to do can save a shocking amount of time and stress.

Understanding the Importance of Time Management

If you feel like your life is chaotic and you can never catch up, you may not be managing your time correctly. It may sound cliché, but time management is a significant skill to learn and habituate. There are plenty of ways to benefit from time management when you do it correctly, and college is the perfect time to start. Lacking a plan for handling your responsibilities leads to unnecessary stress and can result in time wasted while you worry about the things you need to do.

A benefit of having a plan for spending your time can reduce stress and even allow for relaxation. How you manage your time is entirely up to you! As a college student, it is important that when you decide how to spend your time, you also allow yourself time to do the things you enjoy! You should not spend the whole day doing homework. The beauty of allotting your time is that it will allow space for freedom to hang out with friends, attend campus events, or do other things you enjoy.

Proper time management will also help you meet deadlines and turn in quality work that does not appear rushed. This is a good habit that benefits your level of productivity both in college and when you begin your career. It builds discipline and perhaps even instills self-confidence in your ability to get the job done. These characteristics can make your overall experiences in college more enjoyable and remove some of the dread of completing assignments, especially around midterms and finals.

Using a Planner or Agenda

There are many different approaches one may take to manage time effectively. One of my favorite methods is using a standard planner or agenda. When used correctly, a planner will help you stay organized and consistent. Choosing the right planner is important, but it does not have to be fancy or expensive. I prefer a planner that is weekly/monthly. This allows me plenty of space to track my priorities, see long-term goals, and stay on top of day-to-day tasks and assignments. One approach you may take is putting larger projects, like essays, on pages displaying the entire month while also putting it on the page with the specific day-to-day spots. If you are frequently checking your planner, this ensures you will not forget anything.

While you can use your planner to track assignments and other tasks, some methods promote even more organization. One method I prefer and have found beneficial is color coding. Beginning each semester, I like to sit down with my syllabi and assign a color to each course. I then write down each assignment for that course in the color selected. This allows you to see what you have to do, when the deadline is, and what class it is for. You can do the same thing when tracking appointments, work schedules, or athletic schedules.

It may seem like extra work, but having everything in one place can reduce the stress of managing your time. While it may seem more convenient to use an app or the calendar on your phone, research shows writing things down by hand increases your chances of retaining information. There is also a good chance that it will evoke a feeling of self-fulfillment as you check things off a list and complete them.

From your first day of college until the day you graduate, you will be juggling many different things. This will carry over to your career, and the earlier you get into a habit of time management, the better. It does not have to feel chaotic all of the time. If you spend ten to fifteen minutes at the beginning of your week blocking out time and mapping out your hours and days like a planner, you can save yourself from wasted time and unnecessary stress!

Mackenzie Roberts

Mackenzie Roberts

Mackenzie Roberts is a senior at William Penn University majoring in History and Political Science. On campus, Mackenzie is an active presence, enjoying her roles as Student Ambassador and the Department Assistant for Social and Behavioral Sciences. Mackenzie loves college student life and expanding her knowledge on various topics.
A Balanced Life
A Balanced Life
November 22, 2022
This article will focus primarily on stress relief by stepping away from your responsibilities, even if only for a short time.
Building a Mental Toolbox
Building a Mental Toolbox
November 21, 2022
Most students come to college with a few tools already developed in high school, but probably not enough to breeze through their university career. Students should be conscious of their current toolbox and always look to expand, refine, and improve it.
Giving a Darn About Prioritization
Giving a Darn About Prioritization
November 21, 2022
This article stresses the importance of being proactive about priorities.