Getting Those Deadlines Done

Time managing at University is one of those things that you hear from your lecturers and personal tutors that is taken for granted all the way up until your final year (I speak from personal experience), but I found that strict time management of what I was doing gave myself ample time to take it easy.

One of the primary things I did whilst studying, was treat it like a job. I found setting myself daily deadlines as to when I wanted to finish got me through the days pretty quickly. I set myself (more a less) a 9-5 time-frame, that way I was able to do my time in the library.. Get through a good chunk of work, and most importantly allow time for myself to wind down. Of course, its not always possible to give yourself those hours, but setting yourself guidelines and being strict with them is hugely beneficial in hitting your targets.

Now I’ve always been an early riser, and I found that in getting myself up early I was able to get going with my work, before the library started looking like Piccadilly Circus. Others I know, prefer burning the midnight oil and putting the night shift in… whatever your preference, stick to it. I always leaned towards the idea that routine was my friend and in sticking to it, I could always appreciate the time off more.

Everyone has those days where you just can’t get anything done. Its a nightmare… but its not the end of the world. Putting more pressure on yourself to try and cram more in that day, making your working hours longer is only going to make the next day even more painful. The resolution I always found best was being honest with yourself… admit defeat. You can’t always be successful. If you do have a bad day, accept it and focus your efforts on getting enough done the next day. Never have I heard of a student who managed to bust out their 10,000 word dissertation in back to back days, it’s just not realistic.

Now of course, everyones different and everyone has their own techniques on how to go about getting their work done. I’ve merely brushed passed a few ideas but I think what I’m trying to get at here is finding your rhythm. Start early, and just get it going… you’ll learn soon enough what works best for you and what clicks, and from there you’ve got a good base to get it finished in ample time.

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Matt Rhodes

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