How I’ve started making time

Posted on Monday, March 22, 2021

Author: Maïa Natale

A woman smiling

How I stopped saying “I don’t have time” and started making time

Hi! My name is Maïa and I’m a second-year student. Like many students, in the past two years, I’ve struggled with procrastination. I work part time, while doing my Bachelor’s in management keeping up with hobbies such as pottery and do my best to keep in touch with friends and family. My schedule gets busy and, sometimes, I get distracted, or I’d rather be doing something else.

One of my objectives this year was to stop procrastinating. But what did that mean? And how does one do that? I wanted to make sure I had time to do what mattered to me, while being able to focus on my studies when it was time to sit down and get to work.

I’m definitely not a pro, but I did develop a few tricks that help me manage my time and energy, allowing me to do what I love, which in turns makes studying easier. Depriving yourself of what you like definitely isn’t the answer.

I’d like to share some of my techniques with you. You may find them useful if you haven’t already discovered them for yourself!

  1. Identify what motivates you. Is it the feeling you get once a big task is done? Knowing how much you got done today? Giving yourself a treat or reward after you finish it? Personally, I love the feeling of being able to tell my sister how productive I was and getting to hear her encourage me, and doing the same for her. If you can find someone to do this with, I think it could really help you both! Whatever makes you feel great, find that thing and hold on to it. Remember it next time you sit down to work.
  2. Write down your to-do list. This may seem obvious, but some people don’t use one and would feel more productive if they did. It also declutters your brain. Thinking (and overthinking) about how much you have to do can be overwhelming. So write it down instead. See how many tasks you actually need to do. It may be less then you thought! You can also quickly identify big ones, small ones, and figure out which ones are a priority.
  3. Block off your time. Not just for homework. Plan out which times of the day you will eat, sleep, go to work, have fun with friends, and study or do homework. This will allow you to be guilt-free when you’re not studying since you know you’ve already planned time for that. If your plans with your friends change? No big deal. Just switch two blocks. I use the calendar app on my phone because it’s right there, all the time, and I love it.
  4. Know how you study. If you know that you can study very quickly, if you can just get down to it and take away all distractions, then great! But if you know that you need a bit more time, factor that into your schedule. Before sitting down, I take the time to get a few of my favorite snacks (fruit, nuts, and some dark chocolate) and find a quiet space with some jazz music in the background. This minimizes the amount of time that I spend procrastinating, trying to find that sweet study spot.
  5. Do something to de-stress before you study. I love to do a short yoga class right before studying. I find it clears my mind and prepares it to take in all the information I’m about to read.

Fighting procrastination is a constant battle, and in my opinion, you will have to keep updating your strategies in order to find what motivates you! Take it day by day, and ask your friends if they have any other tips that they could share with you!

Did you know? You can have access to academic support through the Academic GPS and chat live with mentors who will help you to identify your needs, offer study tips and supply you with useful resources!

Related Links

Blue sky, and text to link to Wellness Hub.
Back to top