How To Be More Productive In College

Procrastination in college

Let’s be honest. College life doesn’t always turn out to be exactly how you dreamed it would be. To maintain good grades you’ll have to work pretty hard. And without proper planning or execution, you’re likely to find yourself struggling to keep up. Procrastination is one of the biggest factors that can lead to failing grades, as well as an overactive social life. These take up a lot of time that you could have otherwise made more productive, thus leading to a better grade in the future. It’s all about finding the right balance.

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So, to become more productive, you will have to get rid of these habits and become more efficient. The experts of have prepared 5 useful tips on how to be productive in college.


1. Put Your Phone Away

Technology as we know it now is one of the biggest distractions for a student. Texts, emails, and other notifications are constantly flooding our phones. Communication has become so simple and efficient now. While we should appreciate the simplicity this technology brings to our lives, we should also be aware of the consequences.

Most of us are so used to checking our phones that we are highly susceptible to stopping whatever we’re doing whenever it dings. You lose the focus you had on the thing you were working on, and you’ll have to spend a lot more time focusing to get back into the flow. Say for instance this happens every 20 minutes. Just think of how much time you would spend not working on your assignment or project. It adds up to a lot.

So your next step would be to put away your phone (turn it off, switch on airplane mode) for a small amount of time until you’re done with your work. You can start small and slowly build your way up to 2 hours or more allowing you to focus for those full hours. You’ll see for yourself how much more you can complete within that time.


2.  Study in batches

As a new college student, you’d usually find yourself with two options. Study diligently every day for a few hours or scramble at the end of the week cause you’ve been procrastinating too long. It’s easy to make up excuses and put off studying when you try to comprehend the amount of studying you have left to do. Looking at it as one whole stack makes the task seem impossible. This is the main reason why people put off doing difficult things for as long as possible. In the end, you’re just delaying the inevitable and making it much harder on yourself.

Studying diligently every day can be difficult too. Making this a habit takes time, and people learn in different ways. So, if you find that you’re not able to study well and manage your time, you might want to try dividing the study material into smaller chunks. By breaking it up, the task you have to do for the day won’t look so imposing. Also, once you complete the task, you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment. On some days this may encourage you to study more, making you a more productive student.

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3.  Identify when you’re the most productive

There is no specific time where humans are more productive during the day. Some of us are night owls and work best at night in the quiet while others are early birds and are productive in the morning.

If you don’t know already, you should monitor your productivity levels from now on. Identify and note down the times you feel productive every day. You can find out how long you’re typically productive for and during what times. You can then create a studying/working schedule around these hours so you’re as close to peak productivity as others.


4.  Study in an ideal environment

To learn well, we need to concentrate on what we’re learning. If you are:

  • Uncomfortable with your environment
  • Or if there is something constantly disturbing your concentration

Then it is not a good learning environment. 

If you’re at home, you need a private room where no one can disturb you. You could even leave a note on the outside of the door signaling that you don’t want to be disturbed. Getting rid of the constant distractions is necessary to really focus. This can be difficult in a public setting, such as when you have to use the library. In this case, your only option may be to find a quiet corner or plug in some noise-canceling earphones playing white noise.

The ideal environment to be productive also includes your friends and those who study alongside you. If they aren’t serious, the study session will quickly become a social circle. You’ll get distracted by what’s going on around you and be pulled into conversations. So choose your study friends well or better yet, study alone.


5. Create a schedule

No matter how much you mentally prepare to study more, as students, we are quite prone to distractions. If you create a productive schedule for students, you can:

  • Make sure you have time for a good social life
  • Enough time to yourself
  • Time to complete all your college work

You can create weekly schedules so that you can plan ahead without planning too far. College life can be dynamic so planning for a month may not be realistic. Instead, break up your most important tasks, set aside some time for them, and then work all the other factors in after that. You will know what you have to do and when you have to do it, so those feelings of anxiousness are bound to reduce.

These tips on how to be productive in college are just those, tips. It will take hard work and effort on your end to reach your goals. But you should try to incorporate a few of them and see how it works out for you. 

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