With the… never mind. We know what is going on. There’s only a couple more weeks of school left and it’s time to finish strong; here are some tips to help you out.
- Have a Schedule
One thing that is affecting students the most is not having a set schedule that pushes them out of bed in the morning. The best way to fight against this is by making your own schedule. You can take your agenda, or even a scrap piece of paper, and block out time to work, time to eat, and break time. For example, say you schedule your day from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., which is about a regular college day; schedule your mealtimes before nine in the morning, and your lunch break around noon. You can even prepare snacks to keep at your desk to avoid getting too distracted.
2. Make a List
Make a list early in the week with your assignments and their due dates. Keeping yourself organized will help you stay on task without worrying you have missed something. And making a list doesn’t have to stop at you’re your homework; I find that a key to mental clarity is to use lists even for the smallest of tasks to avoid being distracted by something I should have done. There’s no need to go out and buy a special pad of paper to do this, you can use a scrap piece of paper, notebook paper, a word document or even the ‘Notes’ app on your phone.
3. Use Work “Triggers”
No, no, no, I don’t mean that one annoying coworker or supervisor. I am talking about all the things we used to do before leaving to go to class. Whether that’s putting on make-up, brushing your hair, making a cup of coffee, or just picking the cleanest shirt from off of the floor that you can find, all of these habits were correlated to getting ready for school or work. Integrating any of these habits will get you into a scheduled mindset.
4. Create a Workspace
Some of you may have a desk, which is great! Turn your desk into your workspace, strictly just for schoolwork, which means refraining from watching ‘Tik Tok’ here. For those of you that do not have a desk, do not fret! Get creative! A bed stand, foldable table, patio table, or even a short shelf can be reinvented into your personal workspace. Make rules for yourself here though. Correlate this workspace to JUST work, and let’s say your bedroom, or maybe just your bed, for relaxing and for downtime. If you allow yourself to play games, text or scroll through articles about how to get work done from home in this space, you have now correlated it to a space where you do not get your tasks done.
5. Put It Out of Sight, Out of Mind
If you don’t need it, leave it! Leave your phone, tablet, or anything else you know you can easily get distracted with on the other side of the room, in a cabinet or a drawer. If you don’t have it in front of you, there is a less chance of you picking it up. I recommend putting your phone on airplane mode if you don’t need it and leaving it somewhere else. You can even apply some of this to your computer! If you are working on an essay and don’t need the internet, disconnect from the Wi-Fi. You won’t be as tempted to go online.
6. Schedule Sleep Time Too
Scrolling through your phone can wait, friends. Your sleep schedule is much more important than the never-ending, bottomless pit that is Tik Tok. Think of it this way: if you have time to be on your phone at 2 a.m., then you have time to read a book or do another homework assignment. All your social media will still be there after finishing your homework.
7. Break It Down
Most of us can agree everything is better when made into bite-sized bits; break your list down into chewable pieces. Instead of making a short general list made up of big tasks, break those tasks down into smaller pieces. As you finish the smaller tasks, it will give a sense of accomplishment to push you to do the next assignment.
8. Get It Done: ROWE mindset
The end of the semester is approaching, and that means a lot of us are going to try and raise our grades. Everything we use to detach ourselves from the present will still be there. Apply the ROWE mindset to your study schedule. ROWE stands for “results only work environment.” Focus on the results you want instead of the time you’re putting in. Focus on your goals, the grades you want, and don’t look at the amount of time or productivity you may be tempted to complain about putting in. Just get it done!
9. Treat Yourself
There is a time for everything, friends. Use your time wisely. Give yourself time to work and get tasks done, then reward yourself with down time. If working for 7 hours straight is too much, then work for an hour and reward yourself with a ten-minute break or a snack. Reward yourself for doing something good (e.g., your homework), and working throughout the day will become easier.
10. Take a Productive Break
Everyone is familiar with the late-afternoon slump. Your energy is built up by this point and you need a break. That’s understandable! Instead of channeling your energy into scrolling through your phone, channel your energy into something more productive and physical! Some examples include making your bed, folding some laundry or cleaning your room. Put music on if you need a distraction and more motivation. This gives you a greater sense of accomplishment, while still awarding your mind a few moments of rest.
These tips are merely suggestions, so pick and choose as you please, and get creative with them!