Being in college can be very overwhelming. It is incredibly easy to get so involved in the flurry of university and social events that we forget about our assignments and only remember them when it’s far too late. I’m sure we’ve all been there, and while it’s fun in the short term, the stress of having to rush to complete assignments at the last minute is, in my opinion, just not worth it.
Not surprisingly, I was stressed out very often even though it didn’t seem like I was getting a lot of work done. To me, this didn’t seem very effective, so I decided that I wanted to find a way to get my work done early while still having time left over to do things that I enjoy. I also knew that in order to be consistent, I needed a system where I enjoy the process of being productive. After lots of trial and error, I have found that the best ways to stay productive are the ones that also give you something to look forward to. Read on the find out the 4 most effective ways I have used to stay consistently productive!
The first thing I did was get my creative juices flowing. Being able to use my creativity to personalize my lists was a very enjoyable and fulfilling process, and making my lists visually appealing was great motivation continually go back and update it. I know what some of you are thinking: “but I can’t draw!” (I can’t either). Well, being creative doesn’t necessarily have to mean being a good artist. What matters most is that your lists are interesting and appealing to YOU and is something you can be proud of. Can’t draw Pinterest-worthy doodles? Write quotes that inspire you, use your favorite colors or use icons that are meaningful to you. The possibilities are endless.
All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. One of the best ways to get things done is to incentivize yourself – not only will this give you something to look forward to, it will also make that moment you cross off that last checkbox so much more fulfilling. First, make a list of all your wants and assign them to your task lists. You can do this in many ways: treat yourself to small wants for completing daily tasks and a major one for completing all tasks for the month or fulfill a want each weekend for completing all your tasks for the week. Giving yourself something to work for at the end of a self-determined period is an excellent way to keep yourself motivated and keep yourself feeling constantly productive.
Find a Productivity Buddy
As a college student, chances are that there’s someone else you know that shares similar deadlines. Partner up with that person and plan your weekly or monthly to-do lists together with a combined treat at the end of a period. Besides being able to keep each other motivated, having a productivity buddy just makes it so much harder to put your list on the back-burner when falling behind on your tasks could mean not having that weekend brunch session that the both of you have been looking forward to all week.
Include the Fun Stuff
Your to-do list doesn’t have to just contain tasks you don’t want to do but have to. Make your organizational lists more enjoyable and less daunting by including items that you’re looking forward to! Got that party to go to this Friday night? Add it to your list! Organizational lists aren’t supposed to overwhelm or scare you; they’re simply a way for you to organize your personal and college life so you don’t get unpleasantly surprised by a due date or appointment that has slipped your mind (and we’ve all been there).
Being productive shouldn’t have to be yet another chore. Discovering these methods have helped me to become so much more productive as they make planning and organizing my life significantly more enjoyable. I hope they do the same for you, and I would love to hear what you have done personally to make productivity more enjoyable! Let me know in the comments below 🙂