Hey, I'm Siddhi! I'm a full-time engineering student, currently doing a part-time internship and also learning along the way by building small projects. But for the past couple of months, I was having a hard time managing all of these things which in turn was affecting my mental and physical health. So, this month I decided to take a break, introspect and find a solution to this problem and I did find a solution!
I have a simple notion:
Plan the work, then work the plan!
Following is how I executed this notion and tried to manage college, work, and other activities.
Plan the work
- Wake up with a clear plan 🌞
- Assign time slots to the tasks ⌛
- Prioritize the tasks 📝
- Make achievable tasks ✔
Work the plan
- Pomodoro and focused sessions ⏰
- Take enough rest and breaks😴
- Don't work in between lectures (during break) 👩💻❌
- Believe in yourself 😎
- Spend a lot of time with friends and family 👨👩👧👦
Plan the work 🗓
1. Wake up with a clear plan 🌞
Earlier, when I woke up I had no clear idea of what I should do for the day. My mind was a mess and it kind of caused a negative start to the day. Having a clear plan in mind while waking up, made me feel sorted and in control of my day. For that, before going to sleep I planned the day.
2. Assign time slots to the tasks ⌛
For planning the day, earlier, I did whatever task at whatever time of the day depending on my mood. My day didn't have any structure. This made my day messy and I didn't feel like I was in control. Later, I discovered time-boxing. Then, I assigned time slots to different tasks. For the first few days, I tried different combinations to find out which best suited me, and then, I stuck to the one!
3. Prioritize the tasks 📝
Even though, I started time-boxing. It was not possible to give an equal amount of time to all of these things. Somedays, academic stuff was urgent and important and somedays, work stuff. Then, I decided to prioritize the tasks and then decide how much time to give to each of them. Due to this, I was able to complete every assignment or work on time.
4. Make achievable tasks ✔
Forming the tasks was itself a tough task too! For a long time, I tried to do everything at once and I expected a lot from myself. It took me a long time to realize that some tasks take time to do and it's fine! What's not fine is to burden yourself and create unnecessary pressure. Before doing the unachievable tasks, I felt the pressure that how will I do those tasks, and eventually, I was unable to complete those tasks which made me feel miserable. Things can be done in a positive mindset and without pressure. For that, forming achievable goals for the day was the most important task. By practicing this, I was able to achieve a lot than in my previous state as I spent more time doing than worrying.
Work the plan 👩💻
1. Pomodoro and focused sessions ⏰
But, assigning the time slots, is not it! I wanted to achieve the maximum from that time. For that, I used the traditional Pomodoro method, kept the phone away from me, and just gave 100% on the task at hand without any distraction and with maximum focus. This made me complete all the tasks with the best results. Got very good feedback from professors and seniors as well!
2. Take enough rest and breaks😴
While doing all of these things, it's important to be energetic. Many-a-times, I felt tired and didn't feel like doing anything. Taking enough breaks and rest in between was the solution for this. Sometimes, I felt guilty for taking breaks. I used to think that I am not utilizing my time efficiently and instead of taking breaks I could have studied or worked. But, this mindset took a toll on my health and my performance. I then started to take enough breaks in between and did entirely different things than my current work during the break or just did nothing. Out of all my break activities, talking with my mom or friends made me feel the most relaxed and happy😇
3. Don't work in between lectures 👩💻❌
I had this bad habit of working in between lectures. I thought that I was being productive and utilizing my time efficiently. But this was not the case. It was quite the opposite. I was not able to focus and achieve maximum output while working in those breaks. Also, attending the next lectures with full attention got difficult. Break time should be utilized for breaks and taking rest. I learned it the hard way. I then, utilized my breaks just to take a rest and refresh my mind to attend the next lecture with full enthusiasm.
4. Believe in yourself 😎
Believe in yourself that you can achieve the tasks and you are halfway there. Self-doubt, overthinking just costs us time. Even after doing all the above things, sometimes I lacked confidence and I didn't believe that I can complete any of those tasks. But soon I realized that this was just costing me time and affecting my mindset. The only solution to this is to believe in yourself and give your best. Spend time doing the things than worrying about them.
5. Spend a lot of time with friends and family 👨👩👧👦
The most important of all the things is this! Spending an ample amount of time with friends and family. Talking to them made me feel happy and relaxed.
That's all folks 👋
This is what I did to manage my college and work effectively. Thank you for reading this article!
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