Managing Your Time Effectively/trouble concentrating


so I've always had a little bit of trouble concentrating on homework, i'm fine in class but once I get home, just turn on the tv and I don't want to do any school work. I was able to get by fine in high school, but now I'm a sophomore in college and my grades are definitely taking a toll and i need some advice. tv is definitely an issue and i'm trying to cut it down but do you have any suggestions on how I could do that? also, the thing is, I'm not the kind of person who can study for 4 hours straight; I'll start yawning and lose focus, I'll be reading the words but they'll mean absolutely nothing to me. But after 30 minutes of studying, when I want a little break, I don't know what to do. reading a book is too interesting, I get caught up in that and forget to study. watching tv or youtube videos, which is what I've been doing so far, is also out of the question for the same reason, I get too caught up in that. So what can I do to rest my mind for a couple minutes without engaging it in a completely different activity??
Thanks for your help

ANSWER: Hi, Sheena, thanks for writing.  What works in a case like this depends on the individual, but here are a few suggestions: 1. as you said, do homework for the amount of time your attention is good, then take a break. 2. consider the break a reward for the time you studied. 3. get a watch or some device with a timer.  Time your break so it doesn't get out of hand, then return to the homework. 4. each day, write a list of the pages and goals you intend to accomplish in your college work.  Give yourself a special reward (free time, time with a favorite activity, food, etc.) when all the goals are complete. 5. avoid procrastination of longer term goals.  Start work toward a goal as soon as it is assigned by your instuctor.  Break big items into parts and tackle them individually so you are not overwhelmed. 6. although most school work would be an "A" (high priority), prioritize your TV or other leisure activities A (important), B (some importance), C (some value), and D (waste). Stick with the A's, procrastinate B's and C's (record the show for later watching), eliminate the D's.  Hope this helps some, write anytime.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thanks for the advice, I'll definitely try to do that stuff. I've actually prioritized in the past, the problem seems to be that I don't really stick to the list, i slack off and then scramble last minute, but I guess that's more of a self control thing that I'll have to work on myself. But what can I do as a reward? Tv's out of the question, I really need to stop watching so much of it, I'm trying to cut it down to only during meals, but I don't really know of any short like 5-10 minute activities that are fun enough to relax me but not too engaging so I get distracted.

Some rewards may be a walk when the weather is nice, time with a pet, a favorite snack (unless weight or nutrition is a problem), some form of entertainment, a game, singing, play a favorite song on the piano, shooting a few baskets-just anything you enjoy, doesn't take excessive time, and causes no problem with another goal (such as weight loss) or time management.  It might even contribute to another goal, such as stress management or fitness, but should be relatively free from pressure, as this is break time.  Write anytime!

Managing Your Time Effectively

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Kenneth Renshaw


Basic questions about time management, and the use of Day Timers paper and Sharp/Palm eletronic devices in time management.


Day Timers, Sharp OZ, and Palm (Handspring) organizational devices.

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