Boosting productivity can help you to save time, improve grades and reduce the risk of stress. It’s not always easy to balance work and life when you’re a student, but there are ways to achieve more without sacrificing hobbies, socializing and downtime. In this guide, we’ll share some top productivity hacks to try today.
Establish a routine that plays to your strengths
One of the simplest and most effective ways to supercharge productivity is to establish a routine that plays to your strengths. Having a regimen can help you to plan, get organized and stay on top of your to-do list. It can also provide clarity if you have a busy schedule and help you keep stress at bay. When drawing up your daily or weekly routine, consider the way you work and the type of personality you have. Are you a morning person who leaps out of bed at dawn and is ready and raring to go? Do you work best during the afternoons? Are you more efficient later in the day? Try to plan core study hours around the period that suits you best. If you can concentrate and learn in the morning, try to get most tasks done at this time of day. If you don’t usually feel fully alert and awake until mid-morning or early afternoon, use your mornings to exercise, socialize, run errands, read or indulge your hobbies and interests.
Find a quiet place to study and customize your work area
It can be difficult to focus and concentrate when there’s background noise, people are talking or there’s a constant buzz of traffic to contend with. When you have assessments or assignments to do, try to find a quiet place that enables you to study in peace. Avoid crowds and let your friends know that you’re working on something important and you need space and silence. Design a work area that makes you feel comfortable and relaxed and add touches to customize the space. You want to be inspired and motivated when you study. Scatter plants around your room or buy colored keycaps to inject a bit of fun. Hang pictures on the wall or invest in a statement-making desk chair that looks great and offers comfort and support. When you’re at your desk, limit distractions. Use noise-canceling headphones to create a more peaceful working environment and turn off notifications on your phone.
Make use of tech
Technology offers a raft of benefits for students and people who work from home. With innovative tools, equipment, programs and devices, you can cut out time-consuming, repetitive tasks, access online resources and learning tools, take part in virtual classes and catch-ups with tutors and peers and save time on researching, putting essay plans together and writing. If you usually study at home, rather than at the library, it’s worth looking into programs and apps you can use on your laptop, desktop or tablet.
Take regular breaks
It’s understandable to assume that the longer you work, the more you accomplish. In reality, research shows that taking breaks boosts productivity. Taking regular breaks during the working day and periods of study and learning refreshes the brain, aids information retention and reduces stress. Taking time out can also help to increase energy levels, encourage creativity and make people more decisive. If you’re studying, schedule periods to stretch your legs, get fresh air, eat and drink. Going outside is particularly beneficial if you’re struggling to concentrate, you’re stuck on a problem or question, or you’ve got writer’s block. Go for a walk in nature, move your body and take a few minutes to clear your mind. You should find that you return to your desk feeling energized and inspired.
Take time to rest and recover
A lack of sleep can contribute to fatigue, loss of motivation, poor cognitive performance and difficulty concentrating. Sleep troubles can also elevate the risk of stress, depression and anxiety and reduce immunity. It’s beneficial to make sure that your daily routine allows you sufficient time to study, relax and sleep. Health experts recommend 7-8 hours of sleep per night for adults. If you’re going to bed in the early hours of the morning, you feel tired in classes, or you struggle to get to sleep, try adjusting your sleep routine. Set a bedtime and stick to it so that your body clock adapts. If you’re going to sleep at 10 pm one day and 1 am the next, this will make it hard to sleep. If you start going to bed at midnight and getting up at 7 am or 8 am, you will start to feel tired as your bedtime approaches, and you’ll wake up feeling refreshed and ready to attack the day. Before you go to sleep, wind down. Read, listen to music, watch TV or chat with friends. Avoid checking emails, scrolling through social media and doing anything that stimulates or stresses you out.
Make a plan for the week ahead
Making plans is an excellent way to stay on top of your work and get everything done. Start the week with a list of tasks and work your way through it, tackling the most important jobs or assignments at the beginning. Keep your plans updated and use your time wisely. Schedule study sessions, breaks and time to enjoy yourself. Try to prepare in advance. If you have an assessment, and you need books or access to online resources, ensure you have everything you need before you sit at your desk and start working. Research extensively, read the question carefully, collect data, create a detailed plan to organize your thoughts and points, structure your assignment and save sources and references. This will make writing your assignment easier and faster.
Boosting productivity can help you to achieve more without making sacrifices. College life should be centered on learning and developing your skill set, but it’s also important to strike a healthy balance. You should have time to socialize, explore your interests and rest. To increase productivity, take these ideas on board. Establish a routine, play to your strengths and find a quiet place to work. Customize your study space, make use of technology and take regular breaks. Make a plan for the week ahead, ensure that you get enough rest, exercise and spend time outside.