How to fit it all in

by Yolanda

I am looking for effective time management strategies as I am going to begin school on Oct 5 which is a big commitment.

How do I work a full time job (7AM-4PM), walk and take care of the dog and cook and clean for the family on a daily basis?

Kell's reply: Wow, that is a lot of things that you are going to do. You are definitely going to have to prioritize, develop effective habits and get your family to help you out (if you haven't already done so)!

  1. On the study front, set up a semester timetable with these student planners.

    In your semester timetable put your important dates, the exam period, any assignments that you have. This gives you an overview and times when there may be upcoming bottlenecks.

    Once you have this you can funnel this down into a weekly and daily list of things to do.

  2. Reduce your timewaster by keeping a track of your time usage.

    When I have done this in my time management consultancy many of the people have been surprised, even shocked, at some of the things they are spending their time on.

    I suggest that you download a time management log and objectively work out how spend your time.

    However, don't make the mistake that many others have done, and collect the data and do nothing with it. Here are some
    time management activities to streamline your productivity.

  3. Elicit the help of your family.

    I don't know how old your children are, but they can start to help you with some chores.

    Make it into an activity that the family does together.

    Also look to streamline certain activities (such as shopping) and outsourcing other activities. I talk more about this at focus on the family.

  4. Use downtime productively.

    For example, I am not sure how you travel. But if you are a commuter on public transport then look to use this downtime to read your study notes.

    Similarly you could use this time to develop and practice good relaxation strategies to manage the pressure. If you drive to work, then look to tape your lectures, or listen to audio books on your topic of study.

    I also talk more about finding your prime time of the day and how important that is to getting the main things done with these time management tips.

What you are undertaking is going to be difficult but with the proper planning and support around you it is entirely possible.

Also, research shows that we cannot run at a 100 miles an hour all day, every day.

Try to find quite periods of the day where you can relax and rejuvenate yourself.

I recommend trying some stress relief techniques...or treat walking the dog as your down time.

All the best,

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