In the course of their studies, nursing students must learn many skills and acquire the knowledge required for their future profession. This study investigates how Iranian nursing students manage their time according to the circumstances and obstacles of their academic field. Research was conducted using the grounded theory method. Twenty-one nursing students were purposefully chosen as participants. Data was collected through semi-structured interviews and analyzed using the method suggested by Corbin and Strauss. One of the three processes that the nursing students used was “unidirectional time management.” This pattern consists of accepting the nursing field, overcoming uncertainty, assessing conditions, feeling stress, and trying to reduce stress and create satisfaction. It was found that students allotted most of their time to academic tasks in an attempt to overcome their stress. The findings of this study indicate the need for these students to have time for the extra-curricular activities and responsibilities that are appropriate to their age.