Chances are – if your great grandma was Australian – she spent the formative years of education carefully copying out ‘Procrastination is the Thief of Time’ in her best cursive. These days, we have motor cars, computers and YouTube which all threaten to still away our precious time.
Here are some ideas to harness time to your advantage
1. Procrastination be gone!
Watch one of the good, helpful YouTube video on why you procrastinate (the task seems all too big and overwhelming?) and then ask yourself what you can achieve in the next 5 minutes. Then start. Right now. For five minutes.
The key here is to not procrastinate by attacking procrastination head on.
2. ‘You eat an elephant, one bite at a time’
It all adds up. Spend 10 minutes a day summarising the main points you have learnt, for one of your subjects, this week. Chipping away at the Mount Everest in front of you, is not as daunting as breaking out the mental TNT, and it all adds up…
3. ‘Stop Nesting, Start Studying’
This beautiful concept, nestled amongst the pro-tips included in the link below, can be good to remember, if you find yourself unable to start anything until you have all of your coloured highlighters in rainbow order, on your desk. While a tidy, efficient workspace is a great way to lift your mood and cue your mind to focus…there comes a time when fluffing the pillows needs to be tossed aside…
4. Live at the Library…
Great for avoiding the urge to redecorate your room, and great for avoiding social gatherings you would rather attend. I use a little suitcase with wheels, to transport loads of library books. Socially awkward, yes…but pretty sure both great-grandma and the average chiropractor, would approve.
5. Smell the roses… while you are jogging past…
Daily exercise really is an investment in better sleep, reduced stress, and more mental alertness. Aim for 30 minutes. Not a huge part of your day. If you can manage a walk in the morning sunlight, so much the better. Consider a brisk walk around the tranquil Japanese Gardens. Connecting with Nature, and getting your blood circulating is a great way to multi-task.
6. Multi-task and Multi-media
Look for sensible, productive ways to do two things at once. Download lectures and listen on bus trips. Walk on the treadmill while listening to lectures or watching relevant documentaries. Break out the coloured pens and butcher’s paper, and affix the main points to your wall, with stick figure cartoons – for fun *and* study, simultaneously.
7. Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail
Having a daily timetable and diary seems really basic…yet, used to maximum advantage, stops that time slip-sliding away, never to return…
8. Real World in Real Time
Challenge the soothing sense of connectedness offered by Facebook, and meet up with your friends in real life – maybe even have Study Gatherings together. If you live at College, make maximum use of Study Hall. Keep each other honest and focused, and motivated. Encourage. Empathise.
Seek out friends and family with Real World features such as cuddly kittens, and build these little purring stress reducers into your busy week.
9. The Ol’ Cost-Benefit Analysis
Remember why you are at uni. Where do you want to be in 5 years? What will you be able to do (have a great career, afford to buy rather than rent your dream home?) in the years ahead?
Do a quick search of literacy rates globally, and reflect that – even though sometimes it seems never-ending and laborious – education is a privilege. Try to recapture the enjoyment you felt in learning, as a child. Do your best to work hard, in gratitude for your life opportunities.
If this doesn’t help…think of all the chocolate you will be able to purchase, when you use your degree to be gainfully employed.
Do you have any never-fail time management and motivation strategies which work for you? Please let me know, below!