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  • Writer's pictureLiz Morrison, LCSW

Effective Time Management Strategies for Young Adults

Time management isn’t easy. From the moment you are born into this world, time starts it’s steady, unceasing countdown to zero. This is true, not just of the time in your life, but of the time that you have available to you in a year, a month, a week, or a day.

Compounding the problem, time seems to shorten the older that you get. When you were a child, the days seemed long and endless (especially during math class). But now, as someone in their first few years of adulthood, everything seems to be moving at breakneck speeds. Before you know it, the day is gone and you haven’t finished all that you needed to get done. Not only that, there are loads more that need to be done on the following day, along with the stuff that you didn’t accomplish yesterday.

Unfortunately, there’s nothing that you can do to add precious time to your life (other than never sleeping again, which is not recommended). The perceived speeding up of time is something that we all go through. However, you can get more done in your day if you practice good time management.

Good time management doesn’t just come to most of us. Like anything else, it’s a change to your lifestyle. The benefits, however, make it worth doing. So, what type of strategies can you employ for better time management?

A Few Types of Time Management Strategies
  • Avoid multi-tasking. It would seem to make sense that, in order to get your daily list of things done and completed quickly, you would benefit from working on multiple items at one time. However, studies have shown that we actually lose productivity by constantly switching between one thing and another. Not only that, but the loss of focus can lead to mistakes that end up costing you even more time than if you had done it right the first time around.

  • Schedule breaks. Many people subscribe to the thought that taking a break will slow down progress. However, scheduling a break every now and then will help you rejuvenate your mind and allow you to focus better on your tasks. Not only can this lead to improved productivity, but you may actually cut down on those time-consuming errors. Make sure that whatever you decide to do during your break, it won’t be hard to stop, like playing video games.

  • Find out what consumes most of your time. For one week, try to keep a log that you write in every 15 minutes. See what consumes the most time during your average day. Doing this can allow you to see what needs to be worked on or eliminated and help you schedule your time better in the future.

  • Get help when necessary. Do you have too many chores to do? Try talking to your roommate or significant other about them and perhaps they’ll take a chore or two off your hands. Maybe there is something that you need to do that would be accomplished much quicker with the help of one more. Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Just remember that the other person also has their own schedule to keep.

  • Organize. Is there something that you do every week? Taking a little extra time to organize what you need can save you more time in the long run. Use a scheduler or a calendar. It often helps to write your schedule down, as issues with time can be more easily spotted and dealt with if clearly planned, as opposed to trying to manage problems when you’re in the middle of a scheduling conflict.

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