Time management during finals can be a complicated thing to wrap your head around. College students in general struggle to manage their time—they have so much going on, from class to homework to jobs to social activities. If you’re trying to prioritize, it’s time to sit down and think about the best way to manage your time. Here, we’ve compiled a few time management tips to get you through finals week.
7 Time Management Tips to Get You Through Finals
Write It Down
With all the stressors of finals week, it’s imperative for you to write tasks down. Don’t expect to rely solely on your memory—especially when it comes to the little things. Write down each project, big or small, that you need to complete. When you finish a task, cross it off your list to feel a sense of accomplishment.
You might think that all-nighters will be your savior during finals, but the truth is, they do much more harm than good. As you make your schedule for the week (and an even more detailed one for each day), plan out adequate time to sleep. Don’t get so burnt out from working diligently on a project that you fall asleep. A rested brain is a more intelligent brain.
Split Big Projects Into Smaller Pieces
You’ll be thankful that you took this advice. Stressing yourself out over one big project will take up a lot of your energy. Plan out time for each small piece of a larger project: an hour for research here, half an hour for working on a bibliography there. This will make a big project seem a lot more manageable, and it’ll alleviate any anxieties about a big project.
Leave Extra Time
Just in case, leave some extra time for yourself to get the little things done. This flex time will be your saving grace if something unexpected happens. If your roommate forgets their keys or if that book you need from the library isn’t available, this extra time will allow you some flexibility. The best part is, if nothing comes up, you’ll have that extra time for self-care.
Limit Study Break Time
Yes, study breaks are important. However, when you end up taking a two-hour study break because you got too deep into YouTube, you’re just creating more stress for yourself later. Study breaks are incredibly important to freeing up some mental space, but when you take too long of a break, your planned schedule will veer off course. Work hard for a while, then take a fifteen-minute break.
Set Deadlines Separate from Class
You’ll feel a lot better and more on top of things if you’re able to finish a project before the deadline your professor has set. If you can get that big presentation set up a day in advance, you’ll be able to practice the night before rather than scramble to get the slides in the right order. Creating deadlines for yourself will make your finals week much less stressful.
Ask for Help
Unfortunately, a lot of college students don’t ask for help when they’re drowning in schoolwork. If something comes up and you simply don’t have time to get something done, reach out to your professor. Be open and honest about your situation, and they’re more likely to be understanding. If you’re struggling with a paper, go to the campus writing center. There are people who want to help—don’t be afraid to reach out.