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Do More Every Day: How to be a More Productive Student

Written by Herminia Chow
Productive Student

Who doesn’t want to accomplish more every day? I know I do.

We all have it in us. But life happens. The Internet happens. Yik Yak happens.

Drain Your Phone (For Real)

Or don’t charge it when your battery is low. No, I’m not crazy. Your phone is a massive, if not, the biggest time waster. If you have an essay due tomorrow, you shouldn’t be Snapchatting your friends. It’s less tempting to use your cell when there’s five percent of its battery remaining. Better yet, if your phone is completely dead, that’s one less distraction to deal with.

Learn from Edison and King

As hard as it may be to stick to a routine, following a similar schedule every day has been proven to enhance productivity. Thomas Edison did it. Stephen King does it. You can do it.

The 3 C’s

Don’t jump around from one thing to another without ever finishing anything. Starting ten projects at once is not helping your productivity. Utilize the 3 C’s: Commit, complete and conquer. That’s how you get things done.

Virtual Organization 101

If your inbox is anything like mine, you may want to invest in a good filing system. The only cost? Your time. It may seem counter-productive to organize when you could be doing something else (ie. studying), but there are countless benefits to restoring some structure and order in your life. Create folders so you can file away any emails you’ve read and replied to. That way you won’t have 27 emails to go through all at once. Same goes for files on your computer. Make folders to store your pictures, songs, and documents. Knowing where everything is saves valuable time when you actually need to find a specific email or file.

Multi-task the Right Way

There’s such a thing as bad multi-tasking. So be that student who can perform two tasks simultaneously without sacrificing quality in exchange for haste. On the train, listen to yesterday’s literature lesson or flip through some biology flashcards while you wait for the bus. Even the transition between classes can be turned into a quick review session. Multi-task while doing chores. The next time you fold laundry, put on a podcast about American history. Your turn to do the dishes? Recite that speech you have to memorize as you scrub those plates.

Take Advantage of Peak Times

You probably don’t need an expert to tell you when you work best. Make the most of your day by working hard during your peak hours. Are you a morning person? Write that lab report after breakfast. Night hawk? Study for your calculus exam once the sun sets. Try not to play video games or check social media when you’re most energized. Before you realize it, you’re tired and all you want to do is sleep.

Exploit Off-Peak Hours

Places, like people, have off hours, too. Unless you like crowds and waiting in line, avoid the malls, movies and library when they’re busiest. Find locations that work for you and your work.

Say No

You’ll never get much done if you say yes to everything and everyone. Trust me here. Sure, your social life is going well because you go out all the time, but look at what you’re giving up. Your grades? Your dreams? Your productivity?

Your turn. Let fellow SLNers know your tips at being a productivity all-star below.

*Opinions expressed are those of the author, and not necessarily those of Student Life Network or their partners.