Project 365 is a year-long blog series about being a senior at Carolina, going through the senior bucket list, job search, applying to graduate school and just life in general, told in countdown form.

Hello Seniors… I’d like to talk to you about Time Management.

My English teacher in high school was famous for a lot of things… most notably his little axioms that he would pull out of his sleeve. I doubt there’s a Watauga High School graduate who had this man who doesn’t still cringe at the phrase “In your copious spare time…” or “Procrastination – the most populated nation in the world.” But perhaps “Wild Bill” Waterson wasn’t just trying to taunt us as he assigned an endless string of books that we as, sixteen-year-olds, would rather not read.

We often talk about how busy we are.  I know I think I am a very busy person and if you look at my planner, you will indeed see that I have every hour filled with something, be it work or school or some other activity.  I don’t seem to have any copious spare time.  But in reality, if you looked at how much time I waste each day doing things that are not necessary. I check my e-mail obsessively.  I look at Facebook for a while.  I laugh at some of the texts from last night… I will even struggle for an hour to accomplish one of the DTH’s crossword puzzles even though I know I don’t know the name of the Lone Ranger’s Nephew’s Horse (okay actually, I do… it’s Victor). I seem to have time for all of these things, and yet that Emily Bronte book has been sitting on my shelf unread for a week now, despite the fact that I have an exam coming up on it soon.

Now, before we get too far into my own personal failings as a student, let’s remember that we’re seniors… shouldn’t we be good at this whole time management thing already?  These seem like problems that (no offense) freshmen and sophomores should have to deal with, but they aren’t.  And I’m not the only one who procrastinates.  You do it too.  We all do.  We don’t all procrastinate the same way, but we all do it.  So I propose a challenge.

Let’s pick one day in the next week where we embrace our copious spare time and use it for productivity. Turn off the playstation. Sign out of Facebook.  Check your e-mail in moderation. Instead?  Study! Read!  Do something productive! It can be as simple as doing your laundry or cleaning out your desk, organizing your midterm study schedule or finishing that short story you’ve been tossing about in your head. I promise if you take ONE day out of the next week and dedicate it to productivity, you will be extremely happy with yourself.  As for me, I’m choosing Tuesday for my Productivity Day, and in my copious spare time, I will be catching up on my ENGL 338 readings.

Until next time, happy studying, seniors!

206 days to graduation!

– Samantha Ryan

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Check out these helpful links for time management:

Essential for Success

Basics of Time and Stress Management

Time Management Resources

The Med School Time Management point of view