Friday, September 28, 2012

If You Fail to Plan, You Plan to Fail

     If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. That was a quote one of my mentors constantly repeated to me and her voice in my head has never left me!

     Luckily my school began to instill organizational habits within me back when I was in grade 5 by giving all students agendas. In fact, up until grade 7, we were required to get our agendas signed by our parents to acknowledge to our teachers that our parents were aware of our homework, and to our teachers that we were bringing it home. Though it was tedious and annoying for my mom, it no doubt imprinted a great habit with me.

This is a great habit to get into. If you're a student, whenever you receive a course syllabus/outline - put those dates and weights in right away! 

     One of the feelings I'm trying to avoid as much as possible, while still enjoying myself and working hard, is that of too much stress. Apparently in professional school, that's equated with wanting to have your cake and eat it too. But still, I'll only have this entire experience one time!

    Something I've realized is that one of my stress triggers is that of not knowing what's going on. I worry that I'll forget to submit something on its due date, or that there will be so many things going on at once that I won't have enough time to get everything done, leading to me losing sleep, which will lead me to my fear of setting myself up for those dreaded migraines.

     So, doesn't it make sense to plan ahead? Rather than becoming distracted in class, or driven into insomnia wasting time thinking about when exams are, when assignments are due, and how their timings factor in with all of your other classes and other things going on in your life, it makes more sense to have it in an organized form, laid out, containing dates, weightages, and any caveats that may be important to remember. So, I took 10 minutes and laid out what I'm expected to complete during the year.

     One of my classmates also stepped it up a notch to make it even more intuitive by creating a chart which organized assignment and exam dates from earliest to latest, as opposed to organizing it primarily based on the classes.

     The point I want to emphasize here is that by taking a moment to organize yourself, you have everything integrated for you. This will allow you to create a buffer for yourself if you know that you have busy times of the year, or days when you just won't be productive - hopefully this will be the extra motivation to get you working when you'd rather procrastinate.

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