Today we want to share 3 time management techniques to submit your essay on time. Deadlines are tough sometimes. You come up with what looks like the perfect plan of attack for those essays and lab reports. Then it gets to the week before and somehow nothing is done. The reading list looks longer than your comfort-eating grocery store receipt, and by hook or crook, you’re going to have to get the whole show over the line and handed in.
If the self-loathing, self-doubt, and struggle to finish hasn’t pushed you to an essay writing service by this point, take a breath and then use our advice on how to boss time-management into being your strongest suit and hand in your essay on time.
Plan Your Day, Week, and Month
Ok, it may be late in the day for planning the month ahead. What are you going to do in the month after you missed all your deadlines? Probably everything you can to forget about them. But don’t! Stop, and take stock of what you need to do. It may not be an essay deadline, but an internship or graduate scheme hand-in date on the horizon.
You know how many days are in a month, and you should (hopefully) see the component parts of the task in front of you. If you don’t, then you have the first thing to enter into your plan. Figure it out. Dedicate a week, a few days, however long it’ll take for you to get onto the task’s ins and outs before getting into the meat of the matter.
Planning a good day is different from planning a week or a month. The shorter time frame keeps us bound to a few patterns that are bookended by sleep. Look, you don’t need telling to get to bed at a decent time and cut out the caffeine after 1 pm. But we’ll tell you anyway: look after yourself. A day can and will fly by, so don’t feel down if you don’t achieve everything in one day.
At least establish some routine. Self-care, whatever that looks like for you, is a must, as is taking a break from work (which gets its special heading below). You certainly could fill your day with 12 hours of studying, though experts think that isn’t the best option. So carve out slots for work, for play, sport and the essential ablutions. Time is precious.
Track your efforts
Keep a note of everything you’ve done in the day. We’d recommend buying a notebook or diary specifically for this purpose to keep it sharp and continuous – not interrupted by shopping lists or random thoughts.
This circular process of keeping track of your days and what you’ve accomplished sets whirring the parts of your brain which are crucial to organization and perspective. After a few weeks of tracking, you’ll understand what is and isn’t possible. You’ll have a greater sense of who you are, and you’ll be able to look back with some satisfaction by knowing three and a half weeks ago you read that article by that author, and it sucked!
Learn to take proper breaks
Some students have it backward. In answer to the question, ‘how long should an essay be?’, they’ll answer, either directly or with their shoddy work, “As long as you can sit in the chair and remain typing.”
That’s the wrong answer, obviously. Overworking and doing too much in one sitting is a recipe for making lots of corrections later on. Save yourself some time and go outside for fifteen minutes for every block of study. Nature is a wonderful healer, so if you don’t have a suitable outdoor space for a little break, it might help to listen to some natural sounds and do a guided meditation.
What we’re emphasizing here is that a break does not mean moving from consuming one bit of information – the textbook or journal article – to consuming another from your smartphone or laptop. Shift your brain’s focus, and you’ll actually feel a difference.
It is essential to state the following for those raising eyebrows about those ideas: you have to do it more than once. Relaxation is the outcome of a pattern of behavior. It is highly unlikely you’ll feel much better doing it once, but over time the positive effects will grow exponentially. Plus, who knows who you’ll meet if you head outside the library and stay on the bench a little while. Hmm?
Hopefully, these tips will settle into your mind, and you’ll put them into practice tomorrow, or maybe today, if it isn’t too late. The problem of ‘how to start off an essay’ is usually more the problem of ‘how will I ever sit down and write this essay.’
You know more than you think you do about your subject; if you have difficulty handing in your essay due to something beyond time management, make sure you’re not isolating yourself. Speak to your tutor. That’s what they’re there for – your engagement. These time management techniques won’t go anywhere while you do.
Amanda Dudley is a writer and academic with a Ph.D. in History from Stanford University. Since receiving her doctoral degree, Amanda has pursued her career further in education. She is helping to develop teaching methods for children with learning disabilities and aiding students with academic works in EssayUSA where she writes part-time.