20 WAYS TO GET THE MOST OUT OF YOUR TIME.
WHEN TO STUDY
1. Study difficult or boring subjects first: Always make it a habit to study first a subject/topic that is difficult for you. If your maths problems put you to sleep get to them first, while you are fresh. Don’t try to avoid studying a subject no matter how difficult it is for you. In such cases, seek help from a teacher or even a friend to help you through the subject/topic.
2. Study at your best time: To some this may be early in the morning. To some it may be late night. To others it may be after lunch. Find out your preferred best time and study during that time.
3. Use your waiting time: Waiting for the bus, waiting at the canteen to get served, waiting for the teacher to arrive in the class etc. can be used to review learnt material. Carry 8x12 cm cards with formulas, facts or definitions and pull them out anywhere.
WHERE TO STUDY
4. Use a regular convenient study area: Decide which is the best place for you to study. This may be a quiet independent room at home, a corner of the library, under a tree or in a park. When you arrive at that place, you can focus your attention more quickly.
5. Use the library of your college for study: Libraries are designed for learning. Reference books are available.Learn from the librarian or a teacher or a friend how to use library effectively for study. Most people can get more done in a shorter time in the library.
6.Study where you will be alert: You can study in a position where you will be alert , generally in a sitting position on a straight backed chair. Avoid sofa, bed or easy chairs where you will tend to sleep.
HOW TO HANDLE OTHERS THAT DISTURB YOU
7. Pay attention to your study: Concentrate on what you study. When you get distracted by other thoughts, notice the thoughts and let them go out of your mind.
8. Agree with room-mates on study time: When sharing a room with other students, make sure that everyone in the room is clear about
your study schedule. Also make things clear to parents and other family members.
9. Learn to say NO: This is a time saver and valuable life skill for everyone. Most of us would not want to displease anybody by refusing to do some work for them. You must say “No” if it interferes with your study.
10. Hang a “Do not Disturb” sign on your door or in front of your table.
11. Plan for the next day before you go to bed: If you want to make some telephone calls in the morning, look up those numbers and note them down. If you want to meet someone next morning, locate the address correctly and note them down. Keep a note of all that you have to do next day.
12. Avoid noise distractions during study: To promote concentration avoid studying in front of a television. Majority of students prefers silence for study even though a few like carefully selected and controlled music.
13. Notice how others misuse your time: If there are certain friends or relatives who consistently interrupt your study time, avoid them or send them a clear message not to disrupt your studies.
14. Set a reasonable goal for every session of your study and try to stick to it without fail. This is a confidence builder for you.
15.Don’t task yourself too much: If you are bored of studying, switch over to drawing or writing. Develop an attitude of “ I can achieve and I will”. This can work wonders.
THINGS YOU CAN ASK YOURSELF WHEN YOU GET STUCK
16. At the end of the day, ask yourself this question: “ Can I do one more thing?”
Almost always you will have time to do just one more short task. If you get into the habit of working like this, your productivity will increase very much.
17. Introspect at the end of the day: At the end of the day, do introspection to find out how much time you used for studies and how well you utilized this time. If you find that some time has been wasted, analyse why it happened and what you could do the next day to avoid such a situation.
18.Ask; “ Could I find the time, if I really wanted to?” The next time when you are tempted to say “ I just don’t have time,” pause for a minute and question the truth of this statement. Could you find 4 more hours this week for study? Suppose that someone offered to pay RS.10,000 to you to find those 4 hours. Could you find time if vast sums of money are involved? Remember, when it comes to college education, large sums of money are involved. Promise can work wonders.
19. Ask: ”Can I delegate this?” You can delegate some tasks to friends or family members like going to a library for getting books, posting a letter, purchasing some standard stationery items etc. But you cannot delegate certain study tasks like writing an essay or working out an assignment.
20.Categorise the activities into 3 groups and give preference to important ones. List of activities of each day can be prepared the previous evening. Activities that are very important are marked A. These are the ones that you have to carry out immediately. B activities are those that are important but not important enough that they can be postponed slightly. All those activities which do not require immediate attention are marked C. C marked activities are also simple and easy to carry out. Most students have what is called C syndrome. They bestow their attention and energy on C- type activities. They postpone A- type activities because they are difficult. You may never do the A activities. When you are stuck with the C syndrome, ask yourself the question,” Is this activity necessary? Should I take it up?”