When I was in university, I took a full course load, worked full-time, and had a part-time gig on the side. For some reason, being that busy made me commit to my studies; I knew if I messed up, I would be forced to either restart or honestly, quit altogether.
The other day, someone asked me if I ever “do too much,” and I’ve never really thought about my side projects as “too much.” While they always kept me busy after work, I never saw them anything more than a fun project.
Time management was foreign to me in high school, but it quickly became necessary when I entered the workforce and university. I struggled with doing tasks separately, so when I sought help, my academic advisor told me about time management.
The easiest way to explain my process is that I make “appointments” for myself. During the week, I set aside specific times that cannot be rescheduled, and I sit down with myself and do the work required. These appointments are probably something everyone has done, but I have to remind myself that I made a commitment with myself and book a time slot for my own time.
I prioritize my tasks by due dates and size (project size). The best way I stayed organized was by listing every single task in my handy dandy calendar. (I’m not a bullet journal person, I’m not skilled.) So, everything would be listed, and then I would begin to sort out time slots to meet with myself. When I say everything was listed, I mean everything. From class schedules to work shifts to even hanging out with friends. I’ll admit, there were times when I didn’t have time to work on something because I was either not in the right head space or didn’t have enough time to set aside. Those tasks were usually done in the wee hours of the night or hours before it was due.
It took some trial and error, but once I developed my own time management system, I was able to use it well during the remainder of my university years, and it helps me maintain a good balance now.
I’m not likely to give up on any of my gazillion side hustles, mostly because they don’t feel like work, but I do have to be careful about how I split my time amongst them. Time management makes it possible for me to do everything I love and still do it well. Actually, looking at my calendar, I could probably squeeze in one more side hustle…just kidding… (I’m not. Check out Gin with a Book on Insta).