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  1. Write lists: Have you ever had so much going on at once that you forgot to do certain things? Most of us have been guilty of this, at one time or another. Keeping track of everything you need to accomplish ensures that tasks don’t slip your mind. There are countless ways to keep lists. Maybe you need a daily, weekly, or monthly list, or all three. Some people like to make their lists in the morning, but you might find that making them the night before works for you.
  2. Keep a calendar: It can be incredibly helpful to look at the broad picture of your tasks. If you’re working on an assignment that’s due on Friday, but you don’t look at your upcoming deadlines, you could end up not leaving yourself enough time to complete the following weeks deadlines. Allowing yourself to view due dates for presentations, meetings, and phone calls in advance can minimize stress because you know what you’ll be working with and nothing will sneak up on you and cause last-minute headaches.
  3. Set goals: It’s necessary to know what you’re working towards. Setting goals is closely related with time management, because you’re going to need to know by when you want to reach your goals. Not all of your work-related goals have to be deadlines that are already set for you; these goals could be your own methods of breaking down a workday. For example, maybe you want to complete your first draft of a project a week before it’s due so you can edit your work before you turn it in. Another goal could be tackling some things you’ve been meaning to do for a while, or it could be cleaning up your desk for some mental clarity!
  4. Make rewards: There are little things you can do for yourself by completing particularly daunting tasks, but since you are completing tasks that are related to your job, you can’t get too carried away with the rewards! Buying coffee for yourself if you usually make it from home, spending your lunch break relaxing or exercising if you typically work through lunch, or buying a cookie are some examples of small things you can do to thank yourself.
  5. Manage time: You could manage your time in specific time blocks, designating when you’ll eat lunch, take a 15 minute break, and stop working on certain tasks, or you could give yourself more general guidelines. Not everyone wants to plan out their day by the hour, but this can be helpful for some. If you’re not a detailed planner, it’s still probably a good idea to have looser guidelines for yourself such as “finish draft by Monday 5pm.”
  6. Check in (with bosses, coworkers): The way to truly find out if you’re doing what you need to be doing is to check in with those with whom you! If you’re confused or unsure about a project you’re working on, ask the director of a project or someone working with you for help. Sometimes checking in can let you know if you’re on track and making the right progress.
  7. Complete tasks in an order that works for you: Some people like to start with the most difficult or time-consuming item on their to-do list so it’s over and done with and they don’t have to worry about it any longer. Others like to start with something simpler to help them get the ball rolling, so they gain the momentum to complete the rest of their tasks. Figuring out what method you like best can be a huge help in getting things done.

 

Photo Credits: Group Photo: “TijanaM / Shutterstock” – Clock: “Nadezda / Shutterstock”