Mindful Productivity

‘Productivity’, now that’s a word not many students like to hear. It implies that we actually have to roll ourselves out of bed and fill our time with something other than Netflix, video games and scrolling through Facebook. Now that college is back in full swing and continuous assessments are already demanding some of your time, it is important to shake off that lazy, restful feeling. It was nice while it lasted but being a student is not as easy as parents say. Unless you are naturally productive and excel at organising your life, it can be difficult to be productive and keep on track with all your assessments and tasks. The list can become endless each week and begins to build up. One way to avoid this is making the time to tick off each task you have completed.

I know that the idea of taking away your Netflix time sounds extremely unfair, which I have to argue that it is, but the only way to keep productive is by completing all the goals you set yourself. If you’re still feeling overwhelmed about the idea of productivity and you just have no clue where to even start, my best advice to you is to invest in an annual planner. This makes the process of productivity a little bit easy to manage and it also ensures that you have everything written down so you won’t forget.

The next step is planning. This is one of the easiest steps by far since all you have to do is imagine how you would like your day to go and what assessments you need prioritise first. It makes you feel productive before you even get to being productive. The next and most energy-draining step is implementing all of your plans you made time to make. This is where you have to leave your warm cosy bed and do something you are not entirely dedicated to doing, like readings. Nevertheless, the reason why implementing is so difficult is because you feel like each moment of your task is boring and you just have to push through. This may not be the case for everything but when it comes to college, this is usually how productivity goes.

The best way to implement is to focus and prioritise a particular task or assessment, the one that is due sooner or the one you find most difficult. Switch your phone to silent, open up your books and just get stuck is because once you get going, the sooner it will be when you can finish. It is also important to stick with your prioritised task and avoid jumping between a few. If you find your prioritised task is draining you too much, take a short break. Moving on to something different could mean that you lose focus on what you originally set out to do.

Although the mere thought of productivity is draining, it is important to try and master it. But, being productive is a lot harder for some than it is for others. The trick is to set goals and reward yourself once you have managed to pull through. This will not only help you fill your day for more constructive reasons, but it will also help you understand life after college, the years we are all dreading.