The life of a student can be quite hectic if one is not in a position to manage his or her activities appropriately. Apart from the learning environment, a student is also exposed to a non-learning environment, which encompasses various activities. The majority of these activities are crucial to the student and he or she cannot afford to ignore them. Without proper planning, a student can end up forgoing some activities or even accomplishing some irrelevant tasks at the expense of the crucial ones. In my day-to-day schedule as a nursing student, I am supposed to undertake various tasks at the college. However, this element does not mean that I do not have other activities to do at home. Like any other member of my family, I am entitled to some chores at home after my classes. With limited time, I have to organize myself in a way that I can handle most of the tasks. The relationship between time and the number of activities pushed me towards the concept of time management as a student. This paper discusses my perception of time as a student coupled with how one (student) can develop a time management schedule to achieve his or her goals.
A student who fails to understand the value of time can hardly succeed in his or her studies, leave alone life after school. Such a student fails to create an identity of his own and thus gives in to peer pressure, which leads to time wastage. Researchers have defined time management as the effective allocation of time to the right activities by their importance. This aspect depicts the prioritization of activities based on their importance where the least important ones are considered last (Bjork et al., 2013). A student should consider allocating time effectively as it is a scarce resource, which is crucial among competing needs. For instance, as a student nurse, I have to visit the laboratory for my practical sessions coupled with attending theory classes, ward rounds, and theater operations among many other activities. These activities are crucial and have to be accomplished at the end of the day. Due to the inelasticity of time, I have to draw a budget of my time, where I ensure that each activity has enough time allocated to it and still get time to relax. Every student has individual goals that he or she intends to achieve at the end of a certain duration. There exist key driving factors towards success, mostly in academics, which call for the development of tools and processes to increase efficiency and productivity.
Since most students may have a perception that time to rest is time wasted, I tend to differ. Moreover, fatigue can hinder a student from performing his or her tasks well, hence leading to wastage of time on a single activity. A student can engage in various leisure activities or hobbies during his or her free time. These activities are meant to relax both the body and brain, thus doing away with fatigue. The student should waste less time on insignificant activities so that he or she can have enough time to concentrate on tangible and significant activities. Proper utilization of time calls for discipline and dedication from a student. In a bid to make it easier for a student, various steps have to be initiated. Effective planning is crucial to a student where he or she does it in advance. This move includes having a timetable of lessons and activities to be done the following day in advance, which is also applicable for tasks to be performed outside the classroom or school environment. Each activity to be undertaken should be put down in writing on a diary and time allocated against it. It is advisable to complete all pending tasks before starting another fresh task or activity. Mostly, we students are forgetful and out of ignorance, we procrastinate pending tasks and move on to fresh ones (Griffin et al., 2013). This aspect leads to incompletion of work, hence more time being allocated for those tasks. Students studying in the absence of set goals and objectives are bound to fail. However, the set goals should be realistic and achievable. In addition, students should set their goals based on their abilities (Griffin et al., 2013). I have observed some of my classmates with a lot of concern. They set unrealistic goals limited by their abilities, which leads to disappointment and stress when one cannot achieve the goal at the end of the day.
Deadlines and delegation of work are crucial for a student leader or even when studying as a group. Since time is limited, the leader of the group can delegate some of his duties to the members to ensure that all tasks are completed on a timely basis (Anderson et al., 2011). Since students are of different personalities, there exist lazy ones, who do not complete tasks assigned to them on time. Therefore, to curb such vices, deadlines should be set as they serve as a motivating factor to the completion of tasks. Sometimes, I am not in a position to complete all my tasks on time. Other times, I get a lot of pressure trying to complete tasks with short deadlines, thus leading to stress. Prioritization of tasks can help to eliminate this problem where tasks are performed by their urgency and importance. Most crucial tasks should always be done earlier whereas urgent tasks should be first accomplished.
As a student, I realized that I have various weaknesses that hinder me from performing tasks and completing them on time. According to an assessment carried out, the following were my ratings on a scale of 10. Emotional self-awareness is 3, Accurate self-assessment: knowing one’s strengths and limits is 2, self-confidence is 4, Emotional self -control is 3, Adaptability is 5, Achievement orientation 4, the initiative is 4, organization awareness is 3, teamwork and collaboration is 6, optimism is 2, conflict is 2. From this self-assessment, it is clear that I have scored poorly in personal strengths and limits, self-confidence, and organization awareness, which means that I am easily manipulated and have no confidence in making my own decisions. One of the factors that lead to improper utilization of time is peer pressure. Lack of confidence means that I can easily engage in time-wasting activities simply because my friends are doing the same. These activities include gossiping and loitering around the college. Disorganization causes wastage of time while searching for misplaced books, files, or any other document. Therefore, to improve time management skills, every student should be organized by keeping important documents safely in labeled folders. All should be focused and this can be achieved by having tabletop calendars that serve as reminders. Reminders can also be set on laptops and mobile phones (Griffin et al., 2013). I shall also overcome wastage of time by concentrating on work. I should realize that school fees were not paid so that I can loiter and gossip around, rather, it was meant to facilitate my studies.
Time is a significant factor in my life as a student. Time management is not only crucial to a student but also to organizations as well. Any professional course would thus inculcate the discipline of time management into students to ensure success in their careers. Conventionally, being a student of nursing translates to a career in nursing. The first step towards achieving goals for a student is setting up the actual goals personally. Although parents and tutors can help a student to set his or her goals, they should not dictate what the student should do ultimately. This aspect is a common mistake made when parents are domineering in making this decision, rather than playing the role of a guide. Goals set by a student serve as a sense of direction. It is also the role of the student to ensure that the study space is well organized and arranged neatly. This move economizes the time needed when searching for books and other documents. Planning for studies helps a student to weigh the importance of all subjects and rank them appropriately. The most important subjects should be done first. Thorough scrutiny of the syllabus helps in the identification of the complexity of various subjects; hence, assisting one to prepare task plans accordingly (Bjork et al., 2013). Every subject should be jotted down against a specific period. Difficult topics are usually the most important ones, hence should be the first to be covered then the easier ones later. Self-motivation is vital while studying (Anderson et al., 2011). Lack of motivation molds students who are not achievement-oriented, which is one of the reasons for my poor score of 4 for my achievement orientation. Lack of motivation leads to boredom; therefore, a student shifts attention to other irrelevant activities that are interesting to him or her.
Dietary measures should be observed while studying. While food is essential for energizing the body and brain, not all foods are healthy for a student. For instance, a student should take a lot of fruits and salads as they provide a lot of energy to be utilized by the brain (Bjork et al., 2013). However, fatty foods are not recommended, as they are high in calories. They are heavy and make a person sleepy in addition to increasing weight. The self-evaluation assessment was more of my SWOT analysis. It allowed me to identify my areas of weakness in terms of my character; therefore, I should focus on them to ensure positive change leading to improvement. A SWOT analysis can also help an individual student to know the areas of weakness in terms of subjects taken (Anderson et al., 2011). Difficult subjects should not be ignored; rather they should be allocated more time than the simple ones. A student should be logical to assign extra time to critical subjects. Other measures that a student should implement include setting up a time for revisions and studying in well-ventilated and lit areas. Dark study rooms induce sleep, hence wasting time meant for studies.
Anderson, L., Healy, F., Kole, J., & Bourne, E. (2011). Conserving time in the classroom: The clicker technique. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 64(8), 1457-1462.
Bjork, R., Dunlosky, J., & Kornell, N. (2013). Self-Regulated Learning: Beliefs, Techniques, and illusions. Annual Review of Psychology, 64(1), 417-444.
Griffin, R., MacKwen, A., Moser, E., & Van Vuren, K. (2013). Learning skills and motivation: Correlates to superior academic performance. Business Education & Accreditation, 5(1), 53-65.