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Oct 02 2015
by Nicki Kaplan

6 Tips on how to Make Scheduling Easy

By Nicki Kaplan - Oct 02 2015

1) Use a Calendar 

Whether you use a whiteboard, sticky notes, a paper calendar or your phone for jotting things down, a calendar is essential for your college life. It is highly important for you to stay up to date with your assigned readings and homework and you won't want to miss out on that fun Friday outing. If you take the extra twenty seconds to write things down you will benefit tremendously in the long run.

2) Stick to a Routine

Your days will run much smoother once you establish a little order in your life. Thus, try to come up with a routine that works best for you. For example, you may want to pick a time to shower--morning or evening--and decide when you may want to work out, or practice your instrument or eat dinner every night. If you can stick to a daily routine based on your class schedule and outings, then you will feel much more confident in having enough time in your days to do what you need to do. 

3) Less is More

Remember that college is not high school. You do not need to do a bajillion activities in order to impress colleges anymore--those days are behind you. Focus on a hobby or two that you enjoy, and find a fun extracurricular activity having to do with that hobby that you can take part in. Additionally, you'll need to set time aside for studying, for a social life and for some downtime of your own. In the end, you'll find yourself benefiting and getting more out of having a lighter and more focused schedule. 

4) Prioritize your Commitments

If you have a day that is particularly busy, then you should start by rating your activities in order of most importance to least importance. For example, completing that paper due tomorrow is much more important than going to that weekly party that you can easily catch next week once your schedule lightens up. It is up to you to make the right choices in choosing which of your commitments are most important, so make sure to do what is best for you. Then, once you have your list, go down it completing your tasks and chores until time runs out. If you work productively, maybe it is possible that you can finish that paper and still have time to catch the party!

5) Accept a Compromise

There may be days when you have two commitments scheduled closely together and you are forced to choose one. Have no fear--all you need to do is make a compromise. Let's say that you have a club meeting at the same time as your roommate's volleyball game that you promised you would attend in order cheer her on. You could stay for the first half of the club meeting and have a friend call you later and catch you up on what was covered during the rest of the meeting. Then, you could catch the last half of your roommate's volleyball game. It may not be a perfect solution, but it will all work out better in the end.

6) Live in Balance

Make sure that you are not overexerting yourself in one area of your life. Chances are, you have many things that are important to you so you should make sure that you have the time for all of them. Take study breaks between your assignments. FaceTime with your mom tonight because you can always go out with your friends the next day. Workout today and watch Netflix tomorrow. Go to this week's football game and head to the city the next week. Balancing everything out will provide you a far less stressful life and more fulfillment in the end.

Lead Image Credit: Viktor Hanacek

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Nicki Kaplan - Northwestern University

Nicki Kaplan is a freshman at Northwestern University majoring in journalism. In the next four years she plans to finish her novels in hopes of publishing them and make the most out of her journalism career as a student. In her free time she likes to obsess over cute animals, hit the gym, head to the beach, play the guitar and piano, meet and befriend awesome people and laugh a lot.

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