How to Get Anything and Everything DONE!

One common issue that teens and adults always seem to struggle with is time management and procrastination. Below is a list of tips for helping your teen get anything and everything done!

Any large assignment or test to study for, break it down into smaller, manageable pieces/parts. If your teen has many days until a test day or due date, give each day a small part.

For example:

  • Completing a certain number of problems/pages on a study guide a day.
  • Writing an essay outline one night, then doing on page/paragraph a night.
  • Focusing on 2 lessons of study a night for a test.

Also have your teen rank their tasks from most urgent, important or dreadful and tend to those things first. If your teen doesn’t have much time, you may break down tasks into smaller time frames like 4 PM – 6 PM, 7 PM – 8 PM, etc. Which brings us to our next tip…

Using something to plan out your teens week or how they will tackle their tasks that week will make all the difference. Start with giving each day certain tasks and assignments, and then move to hour by hour management if need be. Assign deadlines for certain parts of assignments with your teen, even though a teacher may not have done so.

Going along with the previous point, writing things down or getting it into a phone calendar is a great way to motivate teens to get things done and stay on task. Planners, notebooks, and Google Calendar (along with a plethora of other calendar apps for smart phones) are all great options. Google has many printable weekly & monthly calendars that your teen can print out week to week and write their plans down with. Even making a daily to-do list is an amazing motivator to get done school work tasks and home tasks like chores. I encourage my clients to cross things off in their planners or lists to make themselves feel accomplished. Speaking of feeling accomplished…

Teens need something to look forward to when they’ve accomplished a large task or number of tasks, especially for school, when the assignments they are completing and the topics they are studying are not always where their interest lies. Encourage your teen to attach an incentive to their work. It will give them something to look forward to other than “feeling good about it.” Not all teens feel warm and fuzzy inside when they’ve finished reading their 4 chapters of The Scarlett Letter for the week or studying the structure of DNA all week.

Teens also deserve to take a break! The incentive for finishing a task could be taking a walk with the dog or vegging out to a funny TV show at the end of a productive day. Their brain needs time to breathe so that they can continue to feel their best and do their best.

Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day! Start with one of these habits with your teen, see what works well for them, and capitalize on their successes.