Terrific tips for studying & time management

We all know how to waste time, but do we know how to manage it effectively? Effective time management allows students to complete more in less time, because their attention is focused and they’re not wasting it on distractions like social media, hanging out with friends or just thinking of other things to do besides their work. 

A student’s ability to plan and control how they spend their day to accomplish the goals they’ve set allows them to be successful in all areas of their life! 

A virtual event entitled “Time Management and Study Tips” emphasized consistency and creating a balance between school and work life on Nov. 13. Hosted by the Transfer Student Success Center Steps to Success Program peer mentors Lamberto Figueroa and Priyanka Karki, the workshop gave students many tips on how to recognize the self-imposed obstacles that hinder academic success. 

At the top of the list was procrastination. Delaying one’s tasks for tomorrow or the next day only brings about more stress and anxiety. One way to combat this: complete the most difficult task first, then the rest may not seem as daunting. 

Letting assignments and tasks build, then trying to complete them all in a short amount of time is setting oneself up for self-sabotage. Having too many tasks on the schedule, too many interruptions, being unable to say “no” and seeking perfection are just some of the other ways we sabotage our success. 

Students might be feeling overwhelmed just reading about this, thinking about all of the things they have to do, so start out small. 

Set up a virtual office space in the home or dorm as a study and work area. Eliminate as many time wasters as possible: set a limit for social media, avoid watching crime shows or medical shows, as well as any other frenzied show before bed to get the best quality of sleep. 

And for the commuter students, leave a little earlier than needed to get through heavy traffic and look for a parking space. Keep extra supplies in your car such as phone chargers and a change of clothes. 

Take advantage of breaks in the day to get caught up on emails and classwork. Connect with fellow commuter students, and set up a carpool if one’s schedule permits.

For everyone, there are campus resources like the Cooperative Learning Center Peer Coaching, where students can set up one-on-one sessions with a peer mentor based on their expressed needs. 

There are several sessions available and students can find more information at csumb.edu//clc 

There is also YOU@CSUMB offered by the Personal Growth and Counseling Center. Here, students will find an anonymous online well-being platform, personalized just for them. 

Not only can they help with time management, but they can also offer support with mental and physical health. Find them here at csumb.edu/pgcc/youcsumb

And last but not least, for those students who want to tackle making changes on their own, there is a great book called “Atomic Habits” by James Clear, which emphasizes making small improvements add up over time, and focuses on what one wants to become, not what they have to achieve. 

“Changes that seem small and unimportant at first will compound into remarkable results, if you’re willing to stick with them for years,” Karki said. 

A sign on CSUMB’s campus reads “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” Even though students want to get organized and feel less stressed about classwork and life, it’s easy to stay in the comfort of one’s chaos and just get by. 

But that won’t bring students the peace that comes with good time management and organization. 

Karki stated towards the end of the meeting, “One step at a time. Changes happen over time, don’t expect overnight results! Choose progress over perfection.”

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