- Get a calendar you’ll actually use. I like gCal (Google’s calendar that comes with a gmail account) for its ease of use on most any device. Going old school? Cheap paper calendars rock. Don’t waste loads of time or money getting the perfect planner. Go for calendars that allow you to see at least one month at a glance–a semester at a glance is even better–and has room for ten to twelve items on each day. Avoid calendars that cost more than a cheap date or that feature pictures of soopah cutie-wootie kittens in sweaters. Or Justin Bieber. Or any Cardashian.
- Start using that calendar now. As soon as you have dates to put down, get them inked in; holidays, burfdays, road trips, class meetings, study groups, all night yarnbombing raids, end of semester dates, test dates, project due dates, colonoscopy dates, date dates, etc. Anything that will take more than thirty minutes should go on your calendar. The sooner you get it on there the better.
- Bust up big tasks into smaller chunks. Got a twenty-page research paper due in November? Break it down into small chunks–get research sources, write rough draft, bake brownies for prof, and the like–and put those chunks on your calendar too!
- Write down daily to-dos each and every day. Take five minutes in the AM or just before bed to transfer the next day’s calendar crud onto a to-do list. Assign each to-do a time–attend PHYS201 4:30-5:45, practice waxing w/ Mr. Miyagi from 6:30A-7A–so you’ll not only remember to do it, you’ll know about how long it should take, and what’s next on the agender.
- At the start of the week, map out the week. Sit down with your calendar once a week to look over upcoming commitments and revise, remove, and massage to make e’erthing fit.
These five easy steps–if you will make them part of your daily routine–will have you sailing through school all la-dee-dah while your roomies panic over missed assignments, cram and jam for their next exam, and generally muck it up.© Cody Blair, All Rights Reserved.