Julia felt terrible. She was so far behind in her homework that she was afraid she'd flunk chemistry. Also, no matter how hard she tried, she couldn't keep her room clean. Julia felt out of control, and like a major loser. Sound like the life of a normal teenager? Do you feel like a hamster on a wheel going round and round and getting no where? Well don't worry, you just have to get organized. Here's how. May I Have the List Please? If you have tons to do, take ten minutes and write everything down. It's a relief to get it out of your head and on paper. Number everything in order of importance. For example, if you have lab work that is due, like, yesterday, do that first. When you finish one thing, cross it off —it feels great to see that black line through an activity that is DONE. Then go to the next. Slowly, you will get the hang of organizing the life of a teenager. Date Books Are Your Friends Get a date book —some are really cool. Write in your weekly and monthly deadlines, not just what needs to be done, but when you can do it. For example, Julia wanted her room clean. Unfortunately, she hadn't worked on it for about a month. In her book, she gave herself a half-hour a day for a whole week to get it done...and she did! Don't Procrastinate! When you're disorganized, you feel overwhelmed by all the STUFF! Once you feel that way, it's easy to think, "Why bother? I'll never get it done," and just watch TV. But this won't solve your problems. The solution? Get going. Promise yourself that you'll spend two hours cleaning your room, and 1/2 hour zoning out in front of the tube as a reward. Tell Everyone About Your Plans Tell everybody how much you need to get done and by what time. Let them help you stay focused. For example, tell a friend you need to finish your English homework before you hang with her at the mall, and make her promise not to let you go until you did your work. A lot of people have trouble getting organized. Come up with a system that works for you. It's a tool you'll have in your bag of tricks that will help you the rest of your life.
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