College can be stressful and if you have a lot going on it can add to that so it is important to stay organized. It is so easy these days to procrastinate and lose focus of the things you should be doing. With the internet we literally have the world at our fingertips. It’s so easy to get sucked down a rabbit hole of Buzzfeed quizzes and TikTok videos. Yes, college is about receiving an education but having a social life and meeting new people is also a big part of it. Hopefully these tips will help you stay on top of your work and still be able to have a social life during the semester.
Use a Planner
While this tip may seem obvious a planner can be extremely helpful if you use it to your advantage. A planner can be helpful for planning out your month but it’s also nice for writing out your schedule for the day. Giving yourself small goals to achieve during the day is a good way to stay productive. Being able to check a box when you finish a task is very rewarding and encouraging.
It’s important to be able to recognize what is a distraction for you. Are you getting stuck scrolling on social media? Or maybe you just can’t resist answering that one text. If these problems sound all too familiar to you here’s a few things you can do:
- Turn off your phone. It’s as easy as that. Yes, cutting off connection with the internet may be scary for you, even just for a short time period. However, it will help you focus so much more.
- Leave your room. If you are doing your homework in bed it might be easier to get distracted than if you are sitting in a quiet library or outside at a table.
- Keep your work space clean. Try your best to keep your desk, table, or wherever you do your work clean. If you are surrounded in clutter it will only distract you more. The saying “A cluttered desk is a cluttered mind”, while it does sound cliche, is actually very true. Keeping an organized work space will only make you more productive.
Research shows that a good way to motivate yourself is to use the things that distract you and use them as rewards. Say to yourself “After thirty minutes of homework I will let myself check my phone”.
Develop a Routine
Take notice of the days and times that you are most productive. Develop a routine and stick with it. Everyone is productive at different times of the day. You may be an early riser, or a night owl. While some online articles suggest that the best time to study is in the afternoon, because it’s the time of day that students’ brains are most active, it is important to do what works best for you.
Normally multitasking is seen as a superpower but when it comes to someone who is easily distracted it is something they should avoid. It will be too easy to get distracted and switch tasks in the middle of a project. The best thing to do is complete one assignment at a time, starting with the ones that you think will be the most time consuming. This is so you can get it out of the way and make the rest of your work feel even easier. Some research says that multitasking is equivalent to distraction. It is nearly impossible to give your full attention to multiple tasks.
“The fundamental level of success is doing the hard things first – If you go for the feared thing first, then the rest of the day is easy.”Robert G. Allen
Don’t Forget About Yourself
The final tip is to remember that you need breaks. If you find yourself beginning to fade or get distracted then take a breather. It is important to give yourself a rest. If you have work piling up to your neck, being exhausted, overwhelmed, or burnt out will only lead you be being unproductive and ultimately will not help you get your work done. Go to the gym, hang out with friends, have a self care night, meditate. Whatever it is that you need to do to feel your best. Don’t overwork yourself. There’s no way you will have the energy to finish that paper, or read that chapter, or complete that assignment if you can’t even get out of bed.