By Tresa Kaur Dusaj PhD, RN-BC, CNE, CHSE, CTN-A
Procrastination is very typical of the adult learner trying to juggle many different roles and responsibilities. Work, life, and academic balance is difficult to obtain without adequate time management skills. Here are 5fiveelements of time management to help you succeed in the online environment:
- Plan Everything: Organize your life into a calendar. Plan social, personal, work and academics into one global calendar. It is important to see your life in one view. For example, knowing that you have work and then a birthday party will allow you plan other times to write your term paper or study for a test.
- Plan Ahead: Plan to complete your assignments and readings before the deadlines. Most online courses progress so quickly. Assignments come and go and life happens. Planning ahead will give you enough lead way if you are delayed because work or life events. Notify your instructor immediately if you do have circumstances that prevent you from submitting your assignment on time.
- Smaller Tasks Are More Manageable: Break down larger assignments into smaller ones. Plan out times for reading, reviewing directions, searching literature or the internet, creating headings and drafts, adhering to APA format, and writing your final assignment. A task list is just as helpful as your calendar. I place my tasks from my list on my calendar to help keep me organized.
- Figure Out Your Productive Time: Find the time that works best for you! Decide when you are most available, free of distractions, and productive during the week and weekends. For me, it is at night after my daughter goes to bed. Choose not to be interrupted, avoid distractions, and devote time to your studying then. Household chores and social media can wait.
- Take Some Me Time: Planning out rest and relaxation is just as important as planning your productive time. Everyone needs downtime to rest and recharge. You may choose to unwind with TV or a great book. Use these moments as rewards for being productive and meeting your tasks and goals.
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