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Develop Self-Management Skills

How To Help Students Develop Self-Management Skills

Written by Russ Gadzhiev, PhD

26 June 2022

One of the most important self-management skills for students is time management. Time management means organizing and planning your activities effectively so that you manage to complete all of them. Teaching time management is an excellent way of teaching self-management skills to students.

Time management skills include being able to prioritize things correctly, deal with interruptions, balancing your assignments and obligations with your personal time. If we don’t teach our children to manage their time effectively, they may have problems with procrastination in the future.

There are many benefits to being able to manage time effectively. Those students who can manage their time effectively tend to be more responsible. They are less stressed because they can complete their assignments and get them done before the deadline.

Finally, students who manage their time effectively have more opportunities in life as their time management skills will impress people around them. Clearly, time management is an important self-management skill for students. It goes without saying that people respect and appreciate those people who know how to manage their time and appreciate the time of others.

Those who do not have good time management skills will likely struggle in their personal and professional lives. They may struggle with their responsibilities, which will only be piling up and making them feel stressed. People with poor time management skills will be likely to miss important deadlines, let people down and upset their colleagues. They may earn a bad reputation as irresponsible individuals, which may negatively affect their future careers. Lastly, they may suffer as they will lack self-management skills or the ability to regulate themselves.


Time Management Tips for Students

There are many practical tips that we can give to our children and students to help them manage their time effectively. So, if you are struggling with deadlines here are some time management tips for students:

Get distractions out of your way

There is extensive research that demonstrates these days teenagers spend around 9 hours both on social media and entertainment. This explains why many of them struggle to complete their homework and fulfil other responsibilities. Limiting your time on social media great time management for students. If it’s too difficult for you to control your screen time, there are apps that can help you limit screen time. Being able to limit distractions is also an effective self-management skill for students.

Refrain from multitasking

The effectiveness of doing multiple tasks at the same time is a myth. Existing research shows that doing several things at a time slows down your brain and hampers your productivity. Researchers from Stanford University found out that people who constantly multitask are doing much worse that their peers who don’t.

Self-Management Skills

Those who multitask are often not able to organize their thoughts correctly or identify irrelevant information. Researchers from Stanford University have also found out that multitasking does other bad things to your brain. For instance, it can lower your IQ and negatively affect your other cognitive skills. So, the conclusion is obvious – stop multitasking and concentrate on one task at a time. Avoiding the urge to multi-task is another time management tip for students.

Don’t be afraid to miss out and learn to say no

Many teenagers struggle to decline invitations to parties or refrain from spending time on social media with their friends. They do so because they are afraid to miss out on something potentially interesting. But this fear of “missing out” is just an illusion. When teenagers are unable to say no to their peers, they lose control of their time. So, it is very important for teenagers learn to say no. Being able to resist these urges is another time management tips for students.

Of course, it is difficult to say “no” sometimes. We have always been taught that saying “yes” is a characteristic of nice people and we all want to be nice. But the truth is that saying “no” is not a bad thing. Learning to say no will help you in your future life as it will help you avoid commitments that will make you waste your time. The ability to say “no” establishes the boundaries that enables one to focus their time on their tasks and goals in life skills and is an effective self-management skill for students.

Self-Management Skills

Get enough sleep

This is perhaps the most important piece of advice and time management tip for students. Good sleep is essential for adolescents not only for their successful academic performance but also for their overall healthy development. Research shows that on average adolescents require 9 hours of sleep to restore their energy. However, at the same time researchers have noted a worrying trend: many adolescents these days get only seven hours of sleep, which is of course not enough. Being able to get enough sleep is another self-management skill for students.

Start doing your tasks early

The ability to follow this tip will depend on whether he or she can follow the previous piece of advice. If you start working on your tasks and assignments early in the morning or right after school, you are very likely to complete them successfully as you will be more energized and concentrated. Effectively utilizing time during the day is a time management tip for students. On the contrary, if you start working on your tasks later in the evening, you are very likely to have less energy, leave your task unfinished and even delay your bedtime.

It is interesting that many successful people, known for their outstanding achievements and excellent time management skills with our bootcamp, had one thing in common. They all started their day early and managed to work and successfully complete their creative endeavors. Effectively using the time during the day is clearly a self-management skill for students.

Make sure your work coincides with your internal “prime time”

Your “internal prime time” is the time of the day when you tend to be the most productive and creative. We are all different so, of course, we will have different internal prime times. But most people feel productive and creative early in the morning. Some, however, will say that they are more productive in the evening. So, listen to what your body tells you and identify your own prime time. Once you have done that, you can start scheduling your projects in accordance with this time. A student’s ability to identify their most productive and creative times for tasks is not only another time management tip for students but also an effective self-management skill for students.

Identify time wasters and eliminate them

All human being is guilty of wasting time no matter if they are teenagers or an adult. We all have had those days when planned to do something and then by the way of the day, we realized that we had accomplished nothing. This is all because of time wasters.

Self-Management Skills

Time wasters are things that waste our time. You probably have never realized that they existed. But they exist, and you need to know how to identify them. Are you spending too much time on social media? Are you constantly distracted by your social media notifications? Are you guilty of texting and answering phone calls while studying? Do you tend to surf the net for no reason?

All these things are wasting your time and you need to eliminate them from your life or at least work towards eliminating them. Being able to recognize tasks that are time wasters is a time management tip for students. Make a conscious effort not to engage in these behaviors during your study time. Of course, it will be difficult at first, but with more practice and perseverance you will be able to do that. Eliminating time waters is an excellent self-management skills for students.

Tackle small tasks first and then proceed to the big ones

It is very easy to let your homework or some important school projects overwhelm you. Once you are overwhelmed, you are more prone to procrastination. You get more anxious about completing the task and keep putting it off.

But there is a way to fight this vicious circle. All you need to do is to start with small tasks. Once you start tackling small tasks you will find yourself swept away by your enthusiasm. You will feel good and content about completing smaller tasks and you will want to move to the bigger ones.  Using these strategies is another time management tip for students. Utilizing strategies to maintain one’s motivation is a great self-management skill for students.

Take some time off

Remember that taking care of your mental health is as important as succeeding in your academic life. Making effort to rest when needed is a time management tip for students. If you engage in long study sessions, you need good rest from your computer screen and textbooks. Remember, giving your mind rest is essential.

Self-Management Skills

One of the best ways to relax is doing physical exercise. Exercising has tremendous benefits for our physical and mental health. Not only does it help us to relax our minds, but it also gives us new strength to work on our future tasks.  Regularly exercising to help us relax and improve our health is a great self-management skill for students.

All in all, self-management skills are extremely important for anyone. When we talk about self-management skills, we usually talk about time management. Time management skills should be taught at schools as they set our children up for future success. If we teach our children how to manage their time, they will be more productive and less stressed. They will have a good reputation as professionals and better chances of promotion at work.


Russ Gadzhiev obtained his PhD in history and politics from the University of Melbourne. He also holds a master’s degree in International Relations from Moscow State University of International Relations, a top-ranking diplomatic school. Russ is a strong education professional with a history of working in the higher education sector of Australia who effectively communicates with learners from diverse cultural backgrounds. His background includes teaching, mentoring, writing, curriculum development, research, information management and public speaking. He is fluent in Russian, English, Spanish and Portuguese.

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Chris is from Devon, in the south of England. He has been teaching English as a foreign language for over six years and has taught in China, the UK, Hungary and Spain. He has a background in Music and studied Composition at the RSAMD in Glasgow, Trinity Laban in London and at the University of York. After finishing his master’s at York, he travelled to China to teach and fell in love with it. He has been teaching ever since.

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