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Time Management

How to manage your time as an activist
Last update: May 9, 2022
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How to organize passion projects and life obstacles

In this article, you will learn how to manage your time as an activist. The advice in this guide will help you prevent burning out. We will talk about how to create a schedule and tips for developing the proper mindset when it comes to managing what you do with your time.

Creating a Schedule

Think of schedules like the backbone to your activist project. A proper schedule is essential.

What does your schedule look like?

  • What your schedule looks like depends on you
    • Do you prefer to keep track of things in a Physical or Digital medium
      • Physical examples can be
        • Planners or Journals = Have month calender and wek agenda options. It’s th most traditional, because it’s easy and smart to use. There you can put deadlines for your upcoming projects. Physical planners are most helpful for people who are kinesthetic learners, and prefer the physical act of writing to typing or speaking into a phone.
        • Whiteboard
          • Visual learners benefit from this one as well
      • Digital
        • Google Calender
          • can set up deadlines
        • Notion
          • Can put in to-do lists
        • Notes
        • Evernote
  • Deadlines sometimes work better than to-do lists
    • With To-do lists, there’s a risk, because the items on the to-do list might just stay there forever
    • Deadlines work better, because deadlines give flexibility within a timeframe.

Time Management System

  • Time-blocking
  • To-do Lists
  • Productivity Apps
    • Flow (Pomodoro technique)
  • Morning/Evening Routine
    • Some people work better on their passion projects when they dedicate a specific time to it. Especially with family, work, or school problems, it can be hard to fully devote yourself to a certain thing.
    • Having a morning/evening routine helps because you work when the house is quiet.
  • Dedicate an amount of time per week
    • Provides flexibility with people who have unpredictable schedules.
    • If you can’t fully devote yourself to a specific time in the week to work on your project, then a good idea would be to dedicate how many hours a week you want to work on your project.
      • If you dedicate 2 hours, then whenever you have time during the week, put on a stopwatch and time how long you work. And by the end of the week, you’ll have found time to work on arranging your art exhibition that week!

Create Milestones

  • Milestones are ESSENTIAL not only to track your progress, but to motivate you!

Develop the Proper Mindset

Reasonable Expectations

  • It’s never a good idea to create unrealistic expectations for yourself
    • Stuff like I’ll gain 100 followers by the end of the week.
    • When your ginormous goals don’t happen, then
  • One might think 15 minutes is not enough time
    • Yeah sure, 15 minutes is not enough time to write a 30-page script. 15 minutes is not enough time to …
    • We all want to magically gain an extra hour or two in the day. We can’t wish extra hours into existence but what we can do is decide what to do with the time we have.
  • What you can do in 15 minutes:
    • Write an email to your team of volunteers
    • Schedule/Host a meeting with your group members
    • Network with a phone call
    • Make a rough outline of a speech
    • etc

Make Sacrifices

  • You need to carve out time to make time
  • Jar scenario
    • Imagine your life as an empty jar that you need to fill.
    • First you put the most important things, the essential parts of your life, the thing you cannot live without as the rocks: rocks
      • Family, Religious Worship,
    • You’d think the jar would be filled up with how many rocks you put in, but try putting in some pebblesSecond most important thing: pebbles
      • Work, school
    • Least important: sand
      • TV time, etc
    • You must assign which of the activities you do in your daily life are the rocks, pebbles, and sand
  • When it comes to managing the time between your busy life and passion projects, there are a few solutions. Sometimes, all you need to do is to construct a schedule. Other times, you need to choose to sacrifice what tasks are priority: whether that’s taking a pause on collecting your volunteers' work, so you can finish your literature project or deciding to complete your project website while forgoing your precalc work problems.

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