Have you ever found yourself strung out from too much coffee and too little sleep after pulling an “all nighter” right before a big test? Have you ever noticed how when it comes time to do homework that load of laundry just HAS to get done or cleaning up your room becomes top priority? Or have you ever waited until 2:50 to finish a paper due at 3, and when you go to print it the printer is out of ink? We all have the ability to put off until tomorrow the things that we know we should be working on today. Unfortunately, ineffective time management doesn’t help us much, in college or outside of college.

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Here are a couple tips to help improve the way you organize your time.

Get — and use — a calendar.  Use a planner, a desk calendar or your cell phone. No matter what kind it is, make sure you use it!

Write down everything Write a to-do list, putting the most important tasks at the top. Keep a schedule of your daily activities to minimize conflicts and last-minute rushes.

Plan ahead. Do you have a large research paper due the last week of the semester? Work backward in your calendar and figure out how much time you need to write it. If you think you’ll need six weeks for the entire project, work backward from the due date and schedule the time into your calendar before it’s too late.

Expect the unexpected. Sure, two papers and a presentation in one week may not be a problem for you. But what happens if you catch the flu and are unable to get out of bed? Plan ahead to finish assignments to avoid last minute disasters.

Limit distractions. While doing work, close your door, turn off your phone, facebook, twitter and e-mail.

What’s your favorite time management tip?

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