Student-athletes seem to have so much on their plates nowadays. They learn quickly that there aren’t as many hours in the day as many would like. A typical day may look like this: wake up, breakfast on-the-go, school, practice, a little Candy Crush playing to relax, dinner, homework and then bedtime. Where’s the time to hang out with friends or watch your favorite TV shows?
Time management is a crucial skill that student-athletes must learn to be successful not only in high school but beyond. The earlier this talent is honed, the better. Below are a few tips to help you be as productive as possible with your time:
1. Spend less time on social media – Facebook and Twitter are great for keeping up with friends and current events, but they can also be extremely time-consuming. Consider spending one hour less each day on social media and allocate that time accordingly.
2. Spread out the work – If your teacher gives you advance notice on tests, projects or book assignments, get started right away. Take time to divide the work and do a little each day rather than cramming everything the night before it’s due.
3. Use a calendar/organizer – There are so many ways to stay organized and keep you on task. If you prefer to see everything in writing, buy a planner. Otherwise, Google Calendar is a great organizational tool as it syncs your activities to your smartphone. It can even send you text message alerts to remind you to be somewhere!
4. Plan ahead – Use your planner or Google Calendar wisely. If you know you’ll miss class and/or a test or assignment because of sports, talk with your teacher earlier rather than later to ensure you cover all of your academic bases.
5. Make a weekly agenda – Allocate your time throughout your week wisely. If you have an event on Thursday, get your work done on Tuesday or Wednesday. Set deadlines for yourself so everything happens when it needs to.
6. Use your weekends wisely – Down time is essential to keeping yourself sane. Sleeping late and hanging out with friends are great, but make sure to set aside some time for getting a head start on next week’s assignments.
7. Turn off your phone during study time – Studying and homework require all your attention. Text messages, Facebook updates and Snapchats can easily distract you and don’t allow for good studying.
8. Learn to say no – It’s great to be involved in your school, but you must know your limits. Becoming too involved in extracurricular activities can sometimes make your grades suffer. Only sign up for what you know you can handle.