Being more productive with your time while at university isn’t every students’ strong suit. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed with so many classes to cover and coursework projects to complete.
Accordingly, here are some suggestions for you to manage a little better.
Fix Your Procrastination
Procrastination is a killer of goals and dreams. Left unmanaged, procrastinators see their university grades decline and college work submitted at the last minute. The sheer number of distractions has been growing for students in recent years as smartphones and internet use become ubiquitous. For male students, gaming on their console, smartphone or PC eats up untold extra hours too.
Work to allocate your time more precisely to make better use of it. Have dedicated times for classes, homework, and projects, play time and chores. Use Google Calendar to set reminders about classes and study times. It’s equally important to set stop times as it is start times. It prevents open-ended sessions without a sense of urgency that simply fills the available time.
Take Regular Breaks
Without taking regular breaks, concentrating for long periods becomes increasingly difficult. While deadlines for the submission of a college paper help to push you along (as do cans of Red Bull or coffee infusions), eventually you’ll run out of steam.
It’s necessary to take periodic breaks. You can use the Pomodoro system where you work for a period of 25 minutes and then break for a few minutes or devise something else. Some students prefer longer 90-minute sprints of focused intensity when getting into complex subject matter, where it takes time to get their head back into the topic after a break.
Find a system that works for you. That might mean trying a few out. Using study periods and breaks strategically, it helps to eliminate procrastination too. You’ll then be busy enough that you don’t have a chance to procrastinate.
Include Fun Things to Do Outside of Studies
It’s always good to have something to look forward to. It doesn’t have to be an expensive trip either. Perhaps it’s an hour of gaming or watching Netflix or hanging out with your buddies after your classes and coursework are complete for the day. It could be getting into the latest Michael Connolly thriller on your Kindle e-reader. Whatever it is, having something to look forward to later once your studies are finished makes for an excellent driving force.
Stay Healthy Through Good Nutrition and Effective Hydration
It’s easy to be so busy at university that you forget to eat sensibly and stay hydrated. When you don’t give your body the fuel that it requires, it impairs your functioning. This can be mental, with an inability to learn new information quickly and recall it when needed. It can also be physical with a lack of endurance to get through long lectures, get coursework completed, and still get enough rest.
Eat balanced meals. Plan for snacks if you need one between study breaks to keep you going. Also, look for drink dispensing machines on campus for healthy water beverages. If your university doesn’t yet have one, put in the suggestion and lobby for it.
Be Smart About Waste
This blog post from Bevi discusses the issue of campus sustainability, which might be of interest if you regularly drink soda in plastic cups. Bevi provides healthy drink choices that skip the high-sugar, less healthy hydration options. Follow the example of all the zero waste university campuses that play a key role in avoiding creating more junk to put into landfills. Adopt a zero waste policy in your student life. Don’t purchase what you do not need. Use a refillable water bottle rather than paper cups and canned drinks.
Also, consider the waste from product packaging when buying new items at college. Where will it go? Can it be packed down and put into a recycling bin on campus? If there isn’t a recycling option, go online to check local resources to dispose of the packaging in an environmentally friendly manner.
Freecycle, swap or donate useful goods that you’ve out-lived. Don’t just throw them out. Someone will find those items useful even if just for spare parts. That includes an old laptop that no longer starts up and has been since replaced.
Don’t Overschedule Yourself
While it’s certainly good to take on extra projects while at university to pad out your resume, you don’t want to overdo it. The same goes for trying to work all your spare hours too. It’s important to find a balance otherwise you’ll be burning the candle at both ends with your grades and body suffering as a result. If you think that you’re overdoing it now, find places to reduce your commitments.
Using the above tips, you’ll be a better student. Hopefully, you can graduate with better grades giving you increasing employability when going into the full-time job market. Many of these ideas work equally well in the world of work too, so they’re quite transferrable.