Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Time management jargon buster

Time management jargon busterLearn all the lingo  you need for a time management makeover.

Time management

No, this isn’t a new kind of job. However, being a good time manager will definitely make you more employable. Roughly, it means how you organise your time around all the things that you do, like homework and going out.


What’s the most urgent thing you need to do tonight? If it’s a choice between doing your homework, which is due tomorrow, playing computer games or writing a thank you letter to your Gran, you probably know which thing is most important. Prioritising is when you put things in order of importance and work on them in that order.


Prioritising is all well and good but what if you have two things that you think are equally important for different reasons? Do the urgent ones first!
The urgent things are the ones which need to be done the soonest and are most important to you. For example, your  homework, which may be due the following day. If you don’t do it, you’ll get a detention and a bad mark.

Time planner/timetable/diary

This will save your life! Drawing up a time planner each week, listing what you need to do and when and then sticking to it, will save you a world of stress. Remember to be realistic and sensible. Break the work down into blocks and spread it out over your week.
You can’t expect to study for 12 hours nonstop!


It’s unlikely that you feel as fresh as a daisy at the end of the day. As a result the work you do in the evening may not be as good or efficient as the work you did in the morning. Being efficient is about working smarter, being able to concentrate and produce the best work you can. A good way to be more efficient is to build quality time into your planner.

Quality time

Being a good time manager doesn’t necessarily mean that you give up the things you enjoy doing like hanging out with friends, doing sport or simply doing nothing at all. This quality time helps you to unwind and relax leaving you refreshed and ready to tackle a new day at school or college. It also ensures you get the right balance in your life.


Imagine a set of scales. You could place all your homework on one side. On the other, you put your quality time and time for sleeping and eating. If one side is too heavy, the scales will be off-balance, which is not healthy because it either means you’re not doing enough homework or that you’re working too hard.
This is the same in your life. To be a good time manager, you need to get the right balance.


This is the date or time when something like homework is due. Teachers will normally set homework and coursework deadlines. However, you may like to set your own mini-deadlines for projects. For example, your coursework may not be due for six weeks. However, there maybe several stages involved, such as brainstorming, researching, drafting and then doing the work. To produce a good piece of work, you could set yourself a deadline each week for completing a different stage.


Multi-tasking is when you have more than one thing or deadline in your time planner at any one time. Because you can’t do all the tasks at once, you juggle them, fitting them in when you have time.

Burn out!

If you’ve got too much work and not enough time then watch out for burn out! It may be that you are getting behind with your work or that you’ve taken on more than you can handle. Either way, there’s no point suffering in silence. As soon as you realise you can’t meet the deadline, speak to your tutor or teacher and explain what’s happened. The chances are they will be more understanding and extend it.

Related links