Managing your time as a pre-medical student is difficult. You’re expected to juggle school work, extracurriculars, and a social life. These tips can help you stay organized and successful while keeping work-life balance in mind.
Be Consistent in Your Studying
Developing a consistent study schedule can help you stay on track. Your schedule can even be as detailed as studying each subject within the same 2-hour time slot every week. The consistency will help you get into a routine of studying.
Keep a Calendar
This is my biggest time management tip. Whether it is a physical calendar or a digital one, keeping a calendar will help you visualize how you are spending your time. If your calendar is full of social events one week, fill it with more study sessions in the next week. Calendars always help me hold myself accountable. Schedule bigger things in advance like doing an MCAT practice test, so you can make sure you are prepared when the time comes.
It’s Okay to Say “No”
This is something I really struggle with. When your friends ask you to hang out during the time you have set aside to study, it’s okay to say no and reschedule. Schedule time to hang out with your friends into your calendar, so you can plan ahead and work extra hard in the days or hours leading up to it.
Surround Yourself with People who Support Your Goals
Your friends don’t have to be pre-med students, but they should respect that you are. You want friends that will respect your scheduled study time, and if you choose to study with them, they’ll respect your study habits and allow you to actually get work done. If your friends aren’t naturally like this, you can ask them to hold you accountable for your studying.
Remove Distractions from Your Study Sessions
We’ve all done it, “studied” for hours at a time because we were distracted by our phones for most of the study session. If you can’t give up your phone for too long, set a timer for an hour, start studying, and then check your phone for 15 minutes as a reward when the timer goes off.
Managing your time is a huge part of staying successful in a pre-med program. Stay organized and motivated, and I’m sure you’ll be on a path to success.