Photo by Tima Miroshnichenko from Pexels

5 ways to properly manage your time in college

It’s no debate that time is possibly the most important resource of our everyday lives as humans, even more so as students, but how easily we ignore this glaring fact effortlessly.

With the modelled structure of tertiary education in Nigeria, and possibly around the globe, time is a focal factor. With classes placed strategically, and most institutions have laid out their calendars for tests and exams per semester, it is only smart that students get in sync with this model.

Single-handedly it isn’t an easy task — managing time, and even more so, managing time in college, but over time, and without a handful of “wasted time” I have been able to implement the following tips that have allowed me to be better organized and easily manage my time and interests in college.

Below are 5 of many:

1. Spell out your priorities

Nothing begins until you come to a conscious understanding of this. Before you can manage your time to any degree of sensibility, you must understand what’s important for you and what’s not.
Starting out in college I had no spelt out priorities, and even now my priorities tend to shift but I didn’t attain any sensible form of organisation until I let myself consciously write out what was important to me while I’m in college.

For me, the following areas are my priorities {spirituality, health, academics and relationships}. Identifying them helped me act accordingly as I’d rarely be involved in activities that didn’t actively contribute to the growth of these priorities.

2. Make a written plan

Even with my priorities noted, I found it hard to properly proportion my time accordingly. Yes, I’d attend classes in the day, and kick it with some friends till late in the night and sometimes try to get a few hours of study before walking down to class, and although they are all within my priorities, they were random.

It wasn’t until I put pen to paper on how I wanted to spend my time on a specific day before I could get around with my timing decently.

Although I’ll note, I still slip from the written time plan, and sometimes I forget to do some things, and other times I get to classes late but overall, I’m in sync with my time and that keeps me on track 8 out of 10.

3. Set a benchmark.

One susceptible mistake you would make, or at least that I made, was trying to do a lot of good things all at once.
Like on my daily plan (which is mostly written on a piece of paper, loose in my pocket) I’ll add too many activities that give me a sense of pride that I’m about to have a productive day when in truth, I sensibly can’t get around to all of them. This led to frustrations early on, as I’ll come up short many days in a row, and on days I didn’t, I had fewer but deliberate objectives to get to.

Noting this, I made a point to set a daily and weekly benchmark for myself and this possibly took my time utilization to a different level than when I first arrived in college.

4. Introduce the idea to your friend(s)

This once had and still has a twist to it. Because I was most likely spending time on things that interested me, which would many times mean not hanging out with my friends in college, slowly introducing them to the concept in different ways allowed for a more dynamic blend of our time together.

Some days I’ll like to edit a file, but still want to hang around friends, but it’s always easier when they have some productive objective scheduled as well, so it’s easier to hang out while utilizing our time properly.

Truth is, you possibly won’t get all your friends on board, at least not the first time around, but there’s a level of commitment to your own time that just makes it attractive to them, and they’ll possibly join in once they notice the positive changes reflecting on you.

5. Take breaks

Believe me, this is very important! And what does it really mean to take breaks? It simply means; allow yourself to be spontaneous!

You don’t want to go around like a workaholic or manic who is obsessed with managing time properly. Truth is, you really can’t be that grounded especially if you’re anything like me who can find consistency hard — except you truly are a workaholic and a maniac.

The real reason behind being spontaneous is simply letting yourself avoid burnouts, which can easily occur due to college activities but most importantly allowing yourself to enjoy the moments as they present themselves.

Time is a wonderful resource, and properly utilizing it is possibly the best thing you could do, but you don’t want to get stuck up without letting yourself properly enjoy your own time.
So be okay with spending late nights with friends laughing about nothing and everything. Allow yourself to sleep a little longer in bed (I’ll recommend the weekends. Haha). Go out, but don’t stay out late. Just loosen up a little.

Time is a limited resource. Enjoy it. — ILEMRE


Properly managed time and poorly managed time can spell the difference between a high-achiever and a mediocre one.

Priorities are everything and remember — time is a limited resource, enjoy it!


Listen to the #MCE podcast here and join in on the story!




My College Experience #mce originates from The Confluence University of Science and Technology, Osara. Nigeria and focuses on sharing thoughts about life in college, and practical guides about how to maximize your college experience; ALL BASED ON PERSONAL EXPERIENCES!

Recommended from Medium

How to be productive!!!

Train your brain to stay focused

“To-Do List” — Value Add or Valueless to your daily operations?

How to Set Goals on Medium

Max Ignatius Atlas Year Of Change Day 104

How to take a refreshing break

Best GTD advice—stop being smart

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store


I write about Tech, money and my experience as a college undergrad

More from Medium

5 Simple Habits You Can Adopt to be More Productive.

An illustration of a rocket taking off.

Why I failed at 3 businesses? And what you can learn to not fail

How to choose the best goal setting app

Imagine having the ability to learn anything (And why learning is so important)