Managing Your Time Effectively/How to discipline myself??!


QUESTION: Hello Jan,
I am currently in yr 12, my final and most important year of schooling and I have really hard time to keep myself focused. Whenever, I get to studying or working or anything academic I end up doing something else or sometime I just end up messing around. I get diverted quickly and can't resist myself  from doing other things. So my percentage of time I do actual study is very low. I have tried to follow a timetable but it didn't work out for me. PLEASE help me! so I can better use my study time.

ANSWER: Dear Rjdeep:
First of all, I need to know what classes that you have and what ones you are having a problem with.
Then, I need to know if you keep notes from other tests that you take or the test paper.
Third, Do you have quarterly tests and when are your finals.

These will al help me to give you some guidelines.
Right now, you are basically looking forward to the end of the year and can't concentrate on how to get there and still have good grades. What are your grades now? How much do you study?

Answer these questions and I will give you some ideas of what you can do.
Jan Hayner

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

QUESTION: what classes that I have and the ones I have a problem with?
I do English, Maths, Physics, Aerospace, Business and Engineering.
Physics- Not my best subject and I struggle from time to time and in my last exam, I messed it up, due to lack of practise.
Maths- My teacher has an awkward teaching pattern. She teaches bit and pieces from a particular part of a chapter and doesn't see through it entirely and gives us a lot of practise which I take more than the allocated to complete because of other school work, music or even if I just mess around.
English- Is fine I just need time to organize my time to study better. Also, I love reading books but can;t find any time to do so.
Aerospace- I need to organize myself so I am time for study from time to time.
Business is alright and the least stressful, most of the time.
Engineering- With the maths here requires quite a load of concentration and I tend to make silly mistakes and so with these mistake it takes me more time to do these questions, which frustrates me and pushes me away from engineering.
Overall, I feel burdened by school and my family's expectations

if I keep notes from other tests that I take or the test paper?

Do you have quarterly tests and when are your finals.
I'll have my terms exams, presentation and even assignment.
My final exams are at the end of the year

Hi again Rajdeep:

Thank you for all of the information. Some of your problems is that you don't like what you are learning and you really don't like the teaches either and that can make learning harder. It isn't a matter of 'time' as much as you are losing interest in what you are doing and don't have the self confidence that you need to force yourself to learn. I get the feeling that you are overwhelmed and that you are unsure of yourself. BUT, as with all things in life, we can make it easier, so you become more productive.

Start to keep test papers: WHY?--because you will find that questions repeat themslves on almost every test and it will tell you some of the questions that will be on your finals. It will also tell you the areas that you want to go back to and learn again beause you didn't have the correct answer. Make sure that you write the correct ansers in so you can study faster.

Start files on your computer in Microsoft Word for each class.
Such as: English--then a sub page labeled 'NOUNS' get the idea? This way you can go to that page that is giving you a hard time without having to look through tons of notes and you can write hints in your own words that will make learning easier.

Then get yourself a tape recorder and a blank tape for each class and from time to time tape these notes into the recorder. WHY?--so that you can play it back to yourself with all of the information you need to learn for that particular subject. Play it while you are walking, cleaning, outside, excercising etc. You will find out that the more that your brain hears the information the faster it will be stored and the easier you will learn it. It actually works great, it is like a TV commercial--you don't really concentrate on it, you just hear it over and over and before you know it, you know the whole thing by heart and can't figure out how it happened.

Make sure that when you are studying, you start by studying for 30 minutes--set a timer--then get up, take a 5 minute break and walk away. This gives your brain time to process the information. Then go back and do another 30 minutes. Don't forget to add your information to your tape.

In your schedule, you can schedule time in for going on the computer, excercising, time for friends etc. because this is important too. Your brain needs to relax and be able to process the information you gave it. It can go on overload and then everything becomes mixed up and you become frustrated.

Don't forget to ask friends or look it up on the computer if there are things you don't understand, sometimes it gives you a new way of looking at things and is easier to understand. There are also 'help' sites on the computer where you can get help from teachers through a 'chat' and this is really handy because they make things sound so simple you don't know why you didn't get it in the first place---a lot of kids use these......

As for time: Use Monday - Friday for studies, give yourself Saturday and Sunday off and on Sunday night, refresh your mind by reading your notes so you are ready for Monday.

Good Luck and let me know if you have more questions,
Jan Hayner

Managing Your Time Effectively

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Jan Hayner


I can give you tips and hints on how to use your time efficiently, shortcuts to make this possible and the importance that great time management can have on every aspect of your life, home, job and family relationships.


I am a Professional Organizer and one of my specialties is 'time managment'. I am an advocate of the saying "Work Smarter-Not Harder' and I show you ways to accomplish this through smart and efficient time management.

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