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How can I better manage my time?

Managing time starts with an awareness of how you are spending your time. People find it extremely helpful to keep a time diary. For three days write down everything you do during the time with the corresponding time and length of time. For example, 8-8:30 eat breakfast, 8:30-9:30 work, 9:30-10:30 walk, Noon-1 lunch, 2:30-3:30 meeting, 4:00-5:00 work on project. If you look at this you'll notice that there are several blocks of unutilized time between 10:30-Noon, 1-2:30 and 3:30-4. You shouldn't have to utilize every second of everyday, but this does show that there may be time available during your day. People think they don't have time, but soon realize they either do, they aren't managing their time efficiently or are so busy that it just feels like there isn't any under utilized time available. Once you become aware of how you are using your time then you can better manage it.
Start by deciding what is most important in your life.  Are there things in your life that you can do without?  How are you spending your free time?  Breaking it down and actually noticing what you are spending your time on, you will soon realize you have a lot of time that opens.

Exercising, healthy diet and plenty of sleep can also help with managing your time better.   Things always seem to go a lot smoother when you feel refreshed.  You are more focused, motivated and run more efficiently.

I fully understand that we lead busy lives and sometime get caught up in “the thick of thin things.” For example, we often say,” I should workout.” But we often don’t prioritize exercise in relation to all the other things we do in the day. I understand, work is tough, the days are long, and it is even tougher when you have children BUT…

 My suggestion is for you to try a daily planner that has the hours of the day broken down into 15 minute blocks. I promise no matter what work you do, activities you are involved in, or chores you do on a daily basis; you will work better and be more effective with a daily planner.  After you see what you have to do each day on paper I am sure you can find some time for what is important to you, like exercise, family time, or just relaxing and enjoying doing nothing. My suggestion to use a daily planner is not so you find time to be busier than you already are. That is not my intention; it is so you can prioritize what is important to you and just feel in control of your day so you can do what you want when you need or choose to.

 

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
While it would be a mistake for us to assume that there’s only one way to work, there are some techniques that can make time management a whole lot easier. Some strategies you can try:
  • Map your day: Though you don’t have to stick to an exact schedule, you can get some stress relief if you can organize your tasks and not leave your day to total chance.
  • Break often: Take a walk, have a glass of water, do some gentle stretches, clear your head. The few minutes you spend away from your studies will make you more efficient when you get back.
  • Enlist troops: We know that people can be pretty stubborn when it comes to trying to accomplish goals on their own; some think it’s a sign of failure if they show weakness or an inability to do a particular job on their own. But you’ll reduce stress (and save time) by asking for help when you need it, as long as it’s not considered a breach of trust in class or elsewhere.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.