Life gets crazy pretty fast. Parents make us nuts and test days seem to suddenly be here without a chance to study. The more you try to get things done the more things seem to need doing. When an organized life seems to be slipping away, donít freak out Ė that will only make it worse. Instead, you just need to get a grip!
Make a List
Your first step to getting back into control is to make a list. If youíre really bogged down, multiple lists are the way to go. Make a list of everything you need to do in each of your classes to get caught up or ahead with homework, tests and projects. Then make a list of the things youíre trying to finish at home such as updating profiles, cleaning your room and finishing a friendship bracelet.
If other things are bogging down your mind such as who to date or what to do this weekend, go ahead and make a list for that, too. Your brain likes to organize information into compartments, so if you make a list for you and your brain items will be easier to remember. Youíll also feel a great relief at seeing everything there in a simple format knowing you havenít forgotten anything.
The hardest thing after creating a list is starting to cross things off of it. Itís much easier to list everything that needs doing than to actually start doing them. Take a look at your list and arrange the included items into the time you have. Some things, like studying for a test will take many days, while others, such as laundry, take a few minutes to get started.
Use a calendar if you need to, or rearrange your lists into new lists under the next few days to get yourself even more organized. Then start moving forward with the first item. Start with something small, rather than a huge on-going task. Then cross that item off the list and youíll be on your way.
After the first few items are completed, you might be tempted to take a break and reward yourself for your hard work thus far. Take a break if you need to, but donít reward yourself yet. Stopping before youíre done, even for a few minutes, will break your momentum and make it harder to start again.
Instead of pulling up email as your break, stop and get a healthy snack between study subjects. That will give your brain a break without getting sidetracked by fun stuff. Keep up your intensity throughout the evening, taking short breaks to get water and go to the restroom.
These breaks also give your mind time to clear. But stay at it, youíll be done sooner than you think.
Reward Good Work
At the end of the day, take a look at that list. Have you completed everything on it? Wrap up any loose items or worksheets you might have forgotten and cross them off. Hopefully you allotted a manageable amount of work for the day so that now that the work is finished, its time to play. Relax, kick your feet up and socialize Ė youíve got life back under control (for the moment.)