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Tips For Students: How To Be More Productive And Get The Work Done

Tips For Students: How To Be More Productive And Get The Work Done

Your student days, and student life in general, is probably the most entertaining and exciting chapter of your life, but it also tends to be very stressful.

There are so many responsibilities and so many bills and debts. You might have a hard time mastering a particular subject or paying attention during lectures. You might also have trouble with motivation and time management, or you might be under constant pressure and unable to focus. These are some common problems that students experience. This article is here to help you cope with these problems.

Here, we’ll discuss how to be more efficient in the area of learning and acquiring new information in order to help you with your studies. We will also cover motivation, how to remain motivated, and how to manage your time so that you are not in a constant rush.

Hopefully, learning how to deal with internal and external pressure will help you mitigate the amount of stress you experience. So, here are some tips for students on how to be more productive and get the work done.

Tips on more efficient learning (holistic learning)

When it comes to learning, we usually experience difficulty because we face something unfamiliar that we cannot relate to our previous knowledge. Since the whole thing makes no sense, it simply bores you and you stop paying attention — thus even learning becomes a waste of time.

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We don’t learn when we force ourselves because we are aware of the process. You learn when you are immersed in a particular piece of content — as long as you are aware that you are reading, you are not actually reading because your attention is elsewhere.

The first thing you need is a desire to learn and understand, and you can’t view this as a chore, so view this as a road to self improvement. The learning technique known as holistic learning can be really helpful in this department, since you organize your information and thoughts as building blocks or as webs of knowledge.

As you acquire new information, you are constantly trying to make a connection to what you already know and see how this new data fits. This will make it easier to remember new things and to expand on a particular topic. It’s also useful to use metaphors and organize more complex ideas into simpler ones that will be far easier to access.

Another way to learn with better efficiency is to divide your lessons into smaller segments. Basically, each segment of the lesson needs to be an answer to a particular question that you come up with as you read. In other words, every lesson is a test divided into several questions that you memorize and know how to respond to.

Additionally, as you learn, see if there is video content available online that can demonstrate some points from the lesson. This way, the whole thing will be far easier to remember and understand. It would also be useful if you could record your lectures and transcribe them later. Just make sure the recording device is somewhere in the front and well hidden, as not all professors allow students to record their lectures.

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Tips for increasing motivation

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    Knowing how to learn is one thing, wanting to learn or being motivated is an entirely different story, so let’s see what you can do to boost your motivation. The first thing you can do is to be well-rested. Trying to acquire new information while you are exhausted won’t work out so well.

    Before you start, you need find a system that works for you. For example, you might respond to positive reinforcement, so you can train yourself by buying a slice of pizza or a piece of cake after you have actively studied for, let’s say, three hours. You can also make a commitment or make a promise to yourself that you will actively study for a particular amount of time.

    Finally, if you have hard time motivating yourself, then ask for help or form a study group. Learning with your peers is much more fun. You can give each other tips and you won’t wander off because you’ll feel accountable to other people. Basically, it is peer pressure that serves as your motivation, and the whole learning experience is far more pleasant.

    Tips for better time management

    As mentioned above, you need to be well-rested in order to be productive, which means you need to have a healthy sleep cycle, and a healthy sleep cycle is closely connected to better time management. For starters, do not stay up too late because it will mess up the rest of your day. Make sure you turn in around 9-10 pm, so that you can easily get up early in the morning.

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    If you find that you are not tired in the evenings, you can do a quick workout to exhaust yourself at night and fall asleep easier. You should turn off all the devices that keep you awake, and perhaps have a light snack before you turn in.

    When you hit a wall while studying, do not waste your time doing nothing. Take a quick rest, take time to organize your room, just do anything productive. If everything is neatly organized, you are more likely to be focused, since there are less things to distract you.

    Using the motivation techniques mentioned earlier, you can go over the things you covered in lectures on a daily basis and then reward yourself with some time to just relax or with some dessert. You should study at least two hours a day so that you need less time when midterms and finals arrive.

    Tips for dealing with external and internal pressure

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      Another thing that may appear as an obstacle in your studies is stress. If you are bothered by external problems, then sitting around doing nothing won’t solve them. Think about the solutions and work towards them. If your actions can’t solve the problems then it’s simply beyond you to solve them, and you should focus on something else.

      If you are stressed due to finances, then think up a way to start saving money or earn more money. These days, you can use various apps or websites that allow you to complete surveys, post positive reviews, or complete other actions online and get paid. You can also set yourself a weekly challenge where at the end of the first week you put away $5, double the amount for the next week, and so on for the whole month.

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      It can also be useful to meditate to calm yourself. You will be more focused afterwards. Additionally, you can start working out three times a week to feel healthier, more confident, and to fall asleep easier. All these things can help you greatly in mitigating your stress and increasing your focus and productivity.

      I hope you find these suggestions useful and that you will be more productive in your studies from now on. As a student, you’ll face many obstacles, but they will all pale in comparison with what awaits you once you are finished with your studies. So, enjoy this time while it lasts and use it to become more resilient and more responsible for the future.

      Featured photo credit: https://pixabay.com/en/users/stevepb-282134/ via pixabay.com

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      Ivan Dimitrijevic

      Ivan is the CEO and founder of a digital marketing company. He has years of experiences in team management, entrepreneurship and productivity.

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      Last Updated on April 22, 2021

      How to Work Hard the Smart Way: 4 Daily Rituals to Follow

      How to Work Hard the Smart Way: 4 Daily Rituals to Follow

      Habits are what sets an average leader apart from a great leader. We can argue that talent is the biggest factor; we may debate how the amount of charisma sets the two apart. Yet, if you were to show me what you believed to be a great leader, I can show you the habits that made her/him great. Great leaders have great habits and know how to work hard the smart way.

      Developing Great Habits Is Hard Work

      In my early college days, I had spent a lot of time learning how to play the trumpet. Playing the trumpet took time and discipline. I had some natural talent, but not enough to hide my lack of ability. My trumpet teacher was a man of discipline, and there was no doubt he had talent. What stood to me was his work ethic. He had to be one of the hardest working mentors that I had the privilege of working with.

      One afternoon, I was in his office getting ready for my weekly trumpet lesson. As I was preparing, my eyes scanned the room and saw that there were quotes all over his office. My eyes rested on one quote that forever changed my thinking about my playing. It was a quote from my high school basketball coach Tim Notke that would become popular through professional athletes Kevin Durant and Tim Tebow:

      “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.”

      Hard work trumps talent. The key to success is not found in your talent or ability. Talent and ability are necessary, but they are not the primary factors. They are supporting roles in the story you are writing.

      Ultimately, hard work is the key to your success. A good work ethic creates the momentum that propels you forward towards your goals.

      Motivation Is Not the Answer

      How many times have you seen someone go to a conference, get inspired, and then come home and do nothing?

      If motivation were the answer, the world would have transformed hundreds of times over. Yet, when we look out our doors or turn on the news, we do not see a utopian society.

      We have thousands of people who become inspired but lack the work ethic to apply anything they have learned. Time and time again frustration creeps in. We are so motivated and inspired by what we see but fail to put in place the things that would change our lives.

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      Frustration happens when the gap between what you expect to be true and what is true gets bigger. Motivation tends to create an expectation that is not rooted in reality. We want to take on the world but cannot get off Netflix long enough to do so.

      Motivation is not the answer, but working hard is. Good habits and routines that produce success are the byproducts of a strong work ethic. The habits and routines we create and follow are the foundation on which we build a winning life.

      How to Work Hard by Working Smarter

      Here are 4 routines that will help you learn how to work hard and achieve your short term and long term goals.

      1. Define What a Win Looks Like

      In football, a player that crosses into the end zone gain points. In soccer, a player kicks the ball into the net to score. Hockey, lacrosse, and basketball are all the same. The player takes the object and moves it into the designated area to gain points. The team with the most points wins the game.

      Why is it that we can define what a win looks like in sports, but we fail to do so in our leadership, our businesses, or our homes?

      Learning how to work hard without setting a target is futile. It is insanity to work hard without having a clear direction to place your energy. I would argue that defining a win is one of the most important routines that a leader can have. Defining a win separates superficial activity from meaningful activity.

      When I define a win, I know the goal line I have to cross[1]. Knowing where the goal line is informs me of the activity I have to engage in to cross it. Without a clear direction, I am spinning my wheels hoping that I will get to a destination I haven’t defined. It is like asking a GPS for directions but failing to input the destination.

      4 Steps to Define a Win
      • Know the outcome you desire.
      • Declare the outcome in specific, meaningful terms.
      • Write the outcome down.
      • Set your activity list to only do that which will complete your goals.

      Let me give you an example. 15 years ago, I started speaking professionally. As a young and naïve speaker, I thought winning meant that I had to get a reaction from the audience. If they cheered, smiled, or cried, I considered myself a winner. The problem was my lack of understanding of what a win looked like. As a seasoned speaker, my wins look different.

      As of today, when I speak, I am not looking for any emotional reactions from the audience. I win if, and only if, I clearly communicated my point so that anyone hearing the talk can take it and apply it to their lives that day. That is how I define a win when I speak now.

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      Create a habit of declaring a win. When you do, you will see your productivity soar and your encouragement increase. Pairing a hard work ethic with wise decisions creates victory. Stop being a mouse on a wheel that goes nowhere, and start being the captain of your fleet.

      2. Evaluate Your Activity

      Not all activity is equal. There are things you must do, things you need to do, and things we can either give away or delete. The greatest challenge of a leader is understanding the difference. Understanding what activity is busywork and what activity is mission work is pivotal.

      Not only do we need to learn how to evaluate our activity, but we must make this a core routine in our arsenal of success. Stop working so hard on everything and start learning how to work hard on the right things.

      Not every activity will move the needle forward for you. In fact, you were never meant to do everything yourself! Once we stop trying to be a martyr in our leadership, we can start looking at how to take things off our plates through delegation.

      Based on the Eisenhower box, there are 4 things that we look at when deciding on which activities are important:

      • Do now
      • Plan to do it later
      • Delegate to someone else
      • Delete it

      Powerful questions are the way you discover if the activity is right or not:

      • Does this activity move me towards or away from my goals?
      • Do I have to do this activity or can I give this activity away to someone else?
      • Does this activity have to be now right now or can it be scheduled for later dates?
      • Does this activity have to be done at all?

      Evaluating the type of activity you engage in should be a routine that you do daily. Learning how to work hard should create progress. Having a system of evaluation and a routine to do it will help.

      3. Prioritize Your Calendar

      If you were to show me your calendar, I could show you why you are not further along. When you lack the routine of placing things on your calendar, two things happen.

      First, what does not make it on your calendar does not get done.

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      It is a simple truth that is often overlooked. Your calendar contains the power to change your life. Yet, we don’t use our calendars to their fullest potential.

      “You will never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.” -John C. Maxwell

      Also, if you don’t mark you activities on your calendar, you are leaving it open to other’s priorities.

      “The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.” -Stephen Covey

      Having a routine in your life where you place things on your calendar is pivotal to your success. This is not a routine one should overlook.

      It’s time to take your leadership and business to the next level. It’s time to start putting your daily routines on your calendar, along with your priorities.

      4. Reflect on Your Day and Plan the Next

      We are all about the morning routine. Whatever that looks like for you, there should be a routine in the morning that sets you up for success.

      Hard work starts when your feet hit the ground in the morning. Creating the habit of winning starts with the first thing you accomplish that morning. If you win your morning, you will win your day.

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      Best Morning Routine to Prepare to Work Hard

        But how often have you heard people talk about an evening routine? Tomorrow is won the day before it happens. When you fail to plan your day, you may put your effort toward in the wrong things. Route replaces routine. Indecision replaces decisiveness. Losses replace wins. The discouragement will deflate your momentum and increases the chances of procrastination. That is why we set our schedule the night before.

        “Every battle is won or lost before it is ever fought.” -Sun Tzu

        Working hard doesn’t have to be hard work. It shouldn’t take much out of you learn how to work hard as long as you work smart. Having a time where you reflect on the day and set your priorities is the difference-maker.

        Use these questions to reflect on your day:

        • What went well?
        • What didn’t go well?
        • What can I change?
        • What do I need to start doing?
        • What do I need to stop doing?

        The Bottom Line

        Navigating through life is hard work. Yet, the work doesn’t have to be hard when you work smarter. When you create routines that support your mission, you create wins. Working hard, the smart way will tip the balance in our favor.

        Boxing legend Joe Frazier said:

        “Champions aren’t made in the ring; they are merely recognized there.”

        Champions put in the hard work behind the scenes. The world recognized them as a champion when they saw the results of the hard work. Right now, you are doing the work of creating a champion in yourself.

        That work is setting your routines in order because you now know that success flows from your daily routines. If you are not experiencing the success you desire, then it is time to change things up.

        More on Creating Healthy Routines

        Featured photo credit: Zan via unsplash.com

        Reference

        [1] The Balance Careers: Interview Question: “How Do You Define Success?”

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