Let’s Talk Time Management while studying for the GMAT
March 26, 2012
Time management is a very important element of the GMAT. Those of us who have chosen this path are juggling all sorts of deadlines and time constraints. Effective time management is critical to ensuring your success. Here are my top 3 strategies for time management while preparing Test Day!
1. Be specific
Early in my career, I was introduced to the idea of a model calendar and I still utilize it to this day. When creating my model calendar, I’m specific. I don’t just list Monday – ‘GMAT PREP’. I list the aspect of the test that I plan to review. On Monday I concentrate on Data Sufficiency questions, Tuesday is dedicated to Sentence Structure, etc. This strategy helps me feel confident that I have covered the five question types and one CAT weekly in order to stay on track with my Kaplan 100 hour study plan leading up to my test date.
2. Stay focused
I know that it is easier said than done. Creating a model calendar is just a start, but sticking to the plan you have designed and following through to the end is what’s most important. Avoiding distractions is crucial. When I sit down to study, I log out of all my social networks, turn my phone off and unplug my house phone. In the beginning it was difficult, but I found that these were my top 3 sources of distraction. Develop systems to remove distractions so your designated study sessions are focused and productive.
3. Revisit & Adjust Periodically
At the end of the month, I revisit my original calendar and make any needed adjustments. For example, my class has recently ended and I realized I would have my Tuesday evening back! This meant that I could go back to attending the NYULYP General Body Meetings held on the 2nd Tuesday of each month. It was important for me to revise my model calendar to make sure my GMAT study schedule remained consistent leading up to my test date while allowing time for me to attend this monthly meeting.
Don’t forget, everyone needs a little rest and relaxation so build it into your model calendar. Making sure that you allow yourself time for fun with friends & family or that special someone in your life will help you de-stress, remain relaxed and refocused so that you are ready to study with a clear mind.