As with most things in life, organizing your time effectively comes down to being disciplined.
Adults have many responsibilities: managing our homes, family, social lives, work and you throw in school on top of all that and it’s enough to make you want to pull out your hair. But the key to maintaining a full head of hair is learning to use your time effectively and this means you have to be disciplined.
There are many distractions that can cause you to use your time in ways that are not the best. Your friends invite you to go to a movie and you go instead of studying for your test. You go out for coffee because it will only take an hour and you’re going to study when you get back. You sit down to study, turn on the TV, for background noise of course, and end up getting sucked in to some reality TV program. It takes discipline to not get sucked in to these distractions.
If you’re an adult student it usually means you’re paying for your education. You’re paying to take the class and you’re wasting your money when you’re not being serious about it. To succeed as an adult student you have to give time to your studies which means you will have to give up, on occasion, going out with friends or doing something “fun.” It takes discipline to stay at home and work on a project when your friends are out having dinner. But it’s necessary.
To help manage your time effectively buy a planner. Schedule out in your planner the time you need to study, mark down when papers/projects are due. If you’ve got time blocked out in your planner it’s a visual reminder of what you need to be doing. Before you agree to anything check your planner to see whether it falls on a night you’re supposed to be studying for a test the next day. Stick to doing what you’ve written down in your planner. If you’ve blocked out two hours for studying do it. Don’t allow yourself to sit down in front of a TV.
Find a place to do work that is free from most distractions. It’s often helpful to get away from the TV. Turn off your phone or decide to only pick up phone calls from your family in case it’s an emergency. The phone can be a great distraction. You pick it up thinking you’ll only talk for five minutes and before you know it and hour has gone by.
If you stick to a schedule of studying and don’t allow distractions to get in the way you’ll find you have time for everything else. It just takes discipline to manage your time efficiently.