Preparing for the contractor licensing exam takes plenty of time. When you’re not paying attention, you may lose track of it. If you’re going to balance life, work, and your studies, time management is key. Here are five things you can do to get more done in less time.
Be Realistic About Motivation
When you start to outline the tasks that you need to do for the day or for the week, you’ll probably notice your gut feelings about each one. Some will feel like they are a snap and maybe even fun to work on. Others could feel like drudgery or something that will take forever. Find a way to classify these tasks, such as putting them into easy, medium, or hard categories. That way, you can stagger the harder tasks in between the ones that are easier. If you feel like you only have to spend some time on a hard task, it may make it simpler to push through, so that you can get to an easier one.
Break Up Your Time
One way to accomplish more in a shorter period of time is to break up the tasks into smaller pieces. You don’t want to spend all of your time planning out every five minutes of your schedule, simply because that can decrease your productivity. However, breaking up your work into increments of 15 or 30 minutes can make the work feel more achievable. On days that you’re feeling tired or stressed, opt for shorter increments. That way, you don’t get lost in a single task and give up for the day because you’re too tired to finish.
Set Timers to Stay on Schedule
If you have ever had to research something online, you know what it means to completely lose track of your time management plan. To avoid getting stuck in research rabbit holes or spending too much time on any particular task, set timers that go off at a specific interval. Choose something that you cannot snooze in an instant, or you may turn it off without realizing. If you are scheduling variable times based on the individual task, you may consider using an app that lets you customize the schedule. Time-management apps can be a great way to plan out your time and choose alerts that will be most effective.
To allow you to really dig into the subject you’re working on, make a point to reduce the distractions that you may encounter. If you need to switch books or notes, keep the next set close at hand but not immediately in your face. Otherwise, select a study area that allows you to minimize:
- Excessive clutter
- Harsh or insufficient lighting
- Alerts from other apps
- Disruptions from family members
If you find that distractions are constantly interrupting your tasks, you may need to choose a different schedule. For example, booking 30 minutes out of every hour as distraction-free might be easier to enforce than planning two solid hours of uninterrupted study time.
Plan for Breaks
If you don’t take enough breaks while you study, you may notice that you’re not retaining the information. Cramming can be a useful skill when you know you won’t need the information again, but it doesn’t apply very well to this process. Taking breaks is important for maintaining health and wellness, as well as lowering your overall stress level. It also helps you to process the information that you are studying, so that you are more likely to remember it. When you have a lot of difficult topics to get through, consider giving yourself a five-minute break for each 15-minute period of productivity. You’ll have an easier time keeping the momentum that way.
Time management is an important skill for preparing for the contractor licensing exam, but it’s also good for your future business. For the best tools in getting ready for the licensing exam, visit CSLS today!