A life without discipline is a life gone to waste, it’s that simple. Especially, when you are in college, you tend to get distracted, and sometimes you have even stayed away from your purpose in life. Ashray Living only believes in the well-being of its resident students, and nothing else. We want to see our students rise and shine and live a life that will help them accomplish their future endeavors.
Ashray Living presents you with a list of things that one can do to bring in the discipline and focus that is needed to live a fulfilling life.
1. Have a Schedule
I’m sure you saw this one coming, but it’s essential!
Having a schedule where you can input your to-do list into specific time slots will be the easiest way to keep track of everything. Planners with monthly, weekly, and daily pages are extremely useful for tracking priorities.
Following your schedule religiously is the most important aspect of balancing college and your personal life. Get in the habit of writing notes, random thoughts, and ideas that you have as you go about your day into the planner as well.
You should treat it as your second brain, so that way you don’t have to clutter everything in your real one!
2- Create a TO-DO list
Your to-do list may look long, but have you ordered it correctly?
Begin by simply writing down the tasks on a piece of paper. When listing your tasks, make sure to add their deadlines so that you can organize them in order of priority. Even if the list seems long and overwhelming at first, you can start to group tasks of the same nature together (i.e. reading, homework, shopping, house chores, etc.) and prioritize them in order of what needs to get done first.
A huge productivity hack from serial entrepreneur Tim Ferriss is to ask yourself: “Will moving this forward make all the other to-do’s unimportant or easier to knock off later?”
This means if you have one task that will eliminate the others or make them easier to do, start with it. Same idea if you have one task that will take the least amount of time – get it done first, so you can cross it off the list and keep on rolling.
3- Eliminate Distractions
Between cell phones, social media, and friends, there are a lot of activities that can distract students from their school work. When it’s time to get down to work, have your child turn off his or her cell phone and sign out of social media accounts. Any time on the master schedule that is dedicated to working on school work should be a cell phone and television-free!
4 - Create Rewards
There’s no doubt that celebrations are fun. Whether big or small, being able to positively reinforce the work you do will help you establish a routine and incentive to keep powering through.
You can choose rewards that are monetary, activity, or time-based.
Here’s an idea
If you want to buy a new pair of sneakers, throw a dollar in the jar every time you complete a task. When you’ve worked your way up to the shoes, go get them. Or, if you want to just give yourself 15-minute breaks to play video games, work for 45 minutes with a timer, and then when you hear the buzz, play for 15 minutes as a reward.
5- Set Realistic Goals
Our society (and Kanye) tells us to aim high and “shoot for the stars, so if you fall, you land on the clouds.” But sometimes, it makes more sense to set realistic and smaller goals so that you can pass those hurdles and gain momentum to accomplish bigger goals.
Slow progress is better than no progress, and by being able to complete the small steps, you’re making collective moves to accomplish your long-term goals.
This method also works to manage time because you can’t see so far into the future. By setting up your goals day in and day out, you’re creating good habits that are within your control that accumulate over time to cause big changes. For example, if you want to run a marathon, you’re going to start training daily with just a few miles and build up from there. In that same manner, you can train your brain and mind to grow stamina for studying. If you want to learn a new language, you can do daily lessons, and over time, you’ll realize how much you’ve learned as all the short lessons accumulate
6- Wake Up Early
Does waking up at 5:30 sound tough? The good news is, it’s easy to start:
1. Begin by going to bed at the usual time, then wake up at 5:30 am. You may struggle the first morning, but make sure you get up.
2. Go to sleep early that night, and again wake up at 5:30 am the next day.
3. After that your body clock will reset, and your new wake-up time will be easy.
By setting that alarm clock for the early hours of the morning, you’re setting up your day to maximize your time.
When you’re up early, you rush less, and in turn, stress less. Since the body and mind are getting up from a fresh night’s sleep, it’s the best time to get all your complex thinking tasks out of the way so that you can be productive and set the tone for your day.
Waking up early has a lot of other benefits, too. For one, you’re up before most other people, so it automatically helps to eliminate distractions (see next point). It also gives you the time to exercise and get some “me time,” before all your other commitments take center stage.
7- One Task At a Time
Neuroscience research has shown that multitasking is a myth. The brain performs one function at a time, and while it may seem like you’re doing two things at once, there’s still a start/stop process happening. All that switching back and forth is more exhausting than staying focused and moving to the next task upon completion of the first.
For better time management, focus on one task at a time before switching to the next one. You can even time yourself and compare how much more you can get actually finished (or checked off your checklist) when compared to taking the “multitasking” approach.
8- Start Working Early on Assignments
Good time management skills mean not leaving assignments until the day before they are due. Sit down each week to review upcoming assignments and tests and add them to your master schedule and agenda. Schedule time to start working on them well before they are due so you aren’t stressed and scrambling to meet the due dates.
9- Ask for extra help and Take Advantage of It
In economics, there’s a theory called the Pareto Principle, which states that for many events, 80% of the results come from 20% of the actions.
In other words, there are usually a small number of time management tips or activities you can do that will bring you the biggest return. Now, the problem isn’t in knowing what these activities are. It’s actually prioritizing them in your busy school week.
Recent research has found that while digital tools can help with online learning, it’s largely the non-digital measures that give you the best chance of success.
Things like taking advantage of a professor’s office hours or reaching out when you’re confused and need help are the 20% of tasks that bring about the largest return on your time spent studying.
Think of asking for help as a time multiplier–an activity that actually gives you more time in the future.
Half an hour spent in office hours could save you hours trying to learn something on your own (plus, it shows professors that you’re eager to learn).
10- Take Rest
Did you know sleep actually helps increase productivity?
When students feel overtired, their brain has minimized function as if they’re impaired by alcohol. It’s important to find out how many hours of sleep your body needs to function properly but aim for a minimum of seven hours per night if it’s possible.
Another effective time management skill for students is to take regular breaks while they work. Make sure you regularly break up your study day by grabbing a coffee or eating some fruit (a little spike of natural sugar is good brain food). Of course, don’t forget to drink lots of water, it’s full of oxygen!
Also, if you’re rushing home from work and need to jump into studying, try to take a 30-minute break before beginning so that you can recharge. It will make you much faster and more efficient when you study. A short walk might also be a good way to relax, while also stimulating the brain, before moving back into a phase of focus.
“Lost time is never found again”- Benjamin Franklin
Learning to manage your time is very important in life. If you are able to excel in time management, there is nothing in the world that can stop you from succeeding in life. Ashray Living supports its students thoroughly and believes only in what’s best for them.
Living life with discipline and focus is your task to fulfill.
Providing you a home-like environment for you to be able to do your best work, is our task to fulfill.
We are Ashray Living.