College is the greatest time of your life. The parties, the booze, and the limitless freedom is truly what dreams are made of. Wait, are we forgetting something? Oh, that’s right, I guess there’s actually school and class involved in college too. In case some of you forgot, the biggest buzzkill to your Sunday Funday beer drunk is the thought of your Monday morning finance class. School, homework assignments, and projects are a buzzkill on any day of the week, but they’re inevitable. One of the biggest issues college students have at the end of the day is balancing school, partying, and having some time to do things for yourself, like a workout. Thankfully, we have a pretty awesome solution to helping you get more out of yourself when you’ve got to hit the books. Today, we’re talking about productivity. It’s something everyone can learn to utilize; they just need some tips to get started. Becoming more productive with your school workload and other life tasks will allow you to have more time to do what you really want to do in college: have fun.
1. Get a good night’s sleep, and don’t hit the snooze button.
This is the oldest trick in the book, but there’s a reason your mom always nags you to get more sleep. Having a solid, restful night’s sleep gives your brain the time it needs to recuperate and get ready for the day that lies ahead. Try and get yourself to get a solid 7 hours a night to start, even better, 8 or 9. Getting this necessary sleep is proven to make you more productive the next day. Also, try and keep your technology devices off or out of your room when you’re hunkering down to go to sleep. It’s tempting to lay in bed with the lights off and scroll through all of your feeds before you try and fall asleep, but research has proven that it’s really bad for you. The artificial light from your phone, laptop, or computer keeps your brain stimulated and has proven to get you a worse night’s sleep. Lastly, don’t hit the snooze button when you wake up in the morning no matter how much you want to. When your alarm wakes you up, it has interrupted you from your sleep cycle. If you hit snooze, and fall back asleep, your body is starting it’s sleep cycle all over again. Basically that means that once you finally wake up for good, you’ll feel more groggy all day than you would’ve if you simply got up when you first awoke.
2. Use a daily planner, and check it multiple times a day.
One of the worst feelings is when your suddenly realize you forgot to turn in a homework assignment, take an online quiz, or missed an appointment. A simple way to stay more organized and keep track of what you need to do on a daily basis is a planner. They’re relatively inexpensive and are the size of a notebook so you can keep it in your backpack at all time, allowing you to check it whenever you need. A planner has been a huge productivity lifesaver for me because I’m able to map out my week on Monday and figure out what I need to get done and by when. Trying to remember all of the different due dates and assignment descriptions is a set up for failure. I’d even suggest writing out your assignments in your planner weeks in advance, so you’re not completely blindsided by an exam or a big project as it approaches. Also, if you’re one of those people who are extremely forgetful, set reminders in your phone. The reminders will pop up a day, hour, or minutes early to remind you of the task you need to complete.
3. Log out of your social media accounts, or play a brain game to stay off of them.
Social media and texting is one of the biggest distractions for college students that are trying to get their work done. It’s especially tempting if you’re doing work on your computer because in the click of a button you’re on Facebook or Twitter. These quick views at a feed can turn into twenty minutes to even more of just aimlessly scrolling, procrastinating yourself from what you really need to do. Unfortunately, it turns into you wasting way too much of your time that you could spend knocking out your to-do list. There are a couple ways to combat this from happening. You can try signing out of all of your accounts. Obviously you could just sign back in, but it’s a little more of a process and will hopefully prevent you from going on. Also, turn your phone off, or put it on the “do not disturb” mode. If you don’t have the will to do this, start playing a mind game with yourself. What I like to do, is tell myself “Okay, after I write a page and a half for this essay, I can check my phone for 10 minutes.” It might sound silly, but creating these incentives for yourself will help you stay focused on the task at hand and then give yourself that little break that you need.
4. Start prepping more at night before you head to bed.
Preparation is essential for productivity. As I mentioned earlier, sometimes it can be really hard to wake up and get yourself out of bed in the morning. Who are we kidding, it’s almost always hard. But there’s a way to make your life easier for when you wake up in the morning, and it’s called preparation. Before you go to sleep at night, figure out what it is you need to do the next day and create a to-do list. Then, prepare accordingly. If you decide you’re going to go to the gym first thing in the morning, have all of your workout gear set out before you hit the hay so that you’re not wasting time in the morning to put it together. Have all of your school supplies packed up in your bag and waiting in a convenient spot for you. You can even prep your breakfast. Have your coffee or tea set up and ready to go, and if you really want, set up the ingredients for your breakfast in a Tupperware ready to make.
5. Yes, it’s the most cliche trick in the book, but stop procrastinating.
You’ve heard this one a million times, but you still can’t bring yourself to quit waiting until the last minute to get everything done. Trust me, I am totally guilty of chronic procrastination, but there is a way to stop it in small, easy steps. Create “checkpoints” for your big essays, projects, and assignments that aren’t due for a while. Have a weekly goal to complete some small portion of it. Before you know it, you’ll have most of it done with a few weeks to spare. If you’re someone who really responds to a reward system, have your incentive for finishing the weekly checkpoint be a drink, a meal out, or something like that. Having excuses to treat yourself is never a bad thing, especially if it means getting your homework done in the process.
6. Use a professional task management software like KissIQ
Sometimes good planning, organization, and focus can only get you so far. Human’s minds tend for forget things, and often times, a simple todo list overlooks some of the finer things of time management, productivity, and getting things done. When tasks start to fall through the cracks, you need a specially designed system to track your tasks, time, and expenses in an effective way. To learn more check out KissIQ.com and check out the video below to learn more about how to increase your productivity.