By Deborah Robinson
Towards the end of my Junior year, I was facing finals and regents and so many other pointless things that teachers give at the end of the year that I didn’t have time to do SAT prep and write my college essay.
I made a vow to myself that during the summer I would devote so much time to preparing for the SAT and to writing my personal statement that I would make it perfect. To make a long story short, I didn’t do either. Well, I did do SAT prep but I didn’t do it as much as I would’ve liked.
I was supposed to practice writing the SAT essay and the writing/reading sections because those are the sections that I have the most trouble with. But, like I always do, I started with the math section because it’s easy and the most fun. As the summer can to an end I realized that I had to do something to prepare for this test and that I also had to write the SAT essay. So because I didn’t have time to do all the tests in the SAT workbook, I decided to write down all the words and definitions that I didn’t know so that I could study from that.
I couldn’t study after the summer was over because I’d borrowed the workbook from a teacher and I had to give it back to him because he uses it to tutor his students.
The main reason why I didn’t have time to accomplish all the things I wanted to do is because I had an internship and summer homework. You may think: “Really? Having a job is your excuse for not accomplishing your goals?” And yes, I couldn’t do what I needed/wanted to do because I had a job. But not just any job. This particular job was part of this program that I’d been a part of since the winter of my Junior year. If I’d only had a job, then I would have had time to do other things, but it wasn’t only a job. For this internship program, I, and everyone in it, had to write journals and an essay and create a final presentation for the ending ceremony. This did take up a lot of my time and by the time I would get home from work, I would be too drained to do anything else.
This is where the summer homework comes in. This summer homework is something that would actually get graded and if I didn’t do it, my first grade for three classes would be a 0. I was so tempted to not do it. I really was. But my mom said I had to do it, so I had to do it.
Looking back I realized that maybe I should have managed my time a little better. I feel that if I had finished all the homework — all that long extensive boring homework — before I got the job, I would have had more time to do the college and SAT stuff. School ended June 29th and I started work on July 5th. I had a good 6 days to get my homework done. But I didn’t because I underestimated how much time I would need for each thing I had to work on. Even if i didn’t do my homework the first few days of vacation, I could have actually done it, instead of “waiting ’till the last minute.”
I didn’t actually wait until the last minute because technically, the last minute is right before the teacher collects the homework. But, i did wait a long time to actually work on it. While I was at work, or anywhere outside of my house, I would tell myself, “When I get home, I’m going to get so much stuff done.” As soon as I got home, I lay down in my bed, pulled out my phone, and went on YouTube!
This past summer made me realize the importance of time management. Time is too precious to waste on doing nothing when I could be doing something productive. One of my mentors at my internship program gave me this idea of writing down everything I need to get done, and categorizing these tasks based on importance. She told me that goals that are urgent should get done first, and goals that I could put off for a while don’t need to get done as soon.
Though I haven’t actually tried doing this, I feel that this method of managing goals is very organized and will ensure that I accomplish my goals. I may use this method when I start college or even while I’m trying to finish high school.