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How to improve productivity when studying

Updated: Nov 22, 2020

People in the modern-day society tend to complain about how busy they are, and how they wish that they have more time in a day to complete more tasks at hand. The truth is, we do not actually need more time, but what we need is to learn how to maximize and utilize your time to achieve the most out of it, which is the key element many are missing nowadays – Productivity.

So today, Math Lobby is going to shed some light on how to be more productive at your study desk and what you can do right after reading this article to boost your efficiency in your revisions. Let’s begin!

In short, students are always so fixated on getting their tasks at hand done that they just dive straight into it, thinking that the earlier they start, the more can be accomplished. While that may be true, but there will always be hiccups here and there causing you to lose the precious time where you could actually have completed a significant amount of your assignments.

It all boils down to having a meticulously-devised plan to ensure that your tasks are being completed in a smooth process. When doing assignments, more often than not, we will not be able to process the flow of the events since our minds are already cluttered with the heavy contents from the assignments. Hence, having a plan beforehand can help you to cut down the unnecessary confusion in which task to attend to first.

1. Always carefully devise a plan

- Find a conducive environment – One of the most important things to take note of when studying in the setting which your revision is taking place at. It is advisable to find a location which is quiet and free of distractions. Examples are, your school library, a study room (if your school has one) or at home.

- Prioritize the importance of the tasks at hand – Let’s consider this: If you have a 1500-word essay due in four days, a “Simultaneous Equation” revision for a test tomorrow, and a worksheet on simultaneous equation due in two days’ time, how will you arrange them in order to maximize your productivity?

The first logical thing to do is to arrange the tasks in chronological order first, which means that the test on “Simultaneous Equation” comes first, followed by the worksheet then the 1500-word essay. Next, what do we do?

- Look for tasks that can be done concurrently – Let’s place the 1500-word essay aside for now since it’s the least important in the chronological order. If you noticed, there is a mathematics worksheet due in two days’ time, and a test on the same topic that is going to happen the next day.

The wise thing to do is to complete the worksheet, then study for the test. Why? Because by completing the worksheet, you are technically practicing, revising and identifying loopholes on your understanding of the topic in “Simultaneous Equations”! You are essentially killing two birds with one stone since you get to complete the worksheet, and at the same time, studying for your test that is due the next day.

This will allow you to cut short the time you need to revise for the topic on “Simultaneous Equations” since you have already identified the portions you were lacking in.

- Stick to the plan – This comes the most important part: sticking to the plan. Productivity has a lot of nemesis, but its arch nemesis is, hands down, distractions. Keep your televisions off, your phones on airplane mode (because silent mode still buzzes, which is still quite a distraction if you ask me), and your daily chatter with your friends aside.

You will be surprised at how much more you can get done with the lack of distractions and the level of concentration you will have to stick to your devised plan.

2. Keep yourself healthy

Although this point might seem to be unconventional to how it can directly affect your productivity in studying, but it is incredibly important to keep yourself healthy to maximize your performance on a daily basis.

The last thing you want on your list is to fall sick and waste valuable time in the recovery process, despite having a will to carry on the tasks at hand but your body will not be at all ready to work.

So, have your balanced meals consisting of vegetables, fruits and preferably white meat, drink lots of water (at least 8 liters of plain water) and do 30 minutes of exercise daily to keep that immune system up and going!

3. Produce notes that are effective for your learning

In school lectures, students are always taught to take down notes and use it for revision in the future. However, if you look closely, majority of the time the students that are taking down notes are just blindly copying off the screen with the wrong aim of “finish copying the highlighted key points before the lecturer changes the slides”, instead of actually understand what they are copying down and how it’s linked to the lesson taught.

Hence, it is important to come up with notes that you actually understand and is useful for your revisions. Include things like mind maps, draw diagrams, utilize mnemonics to learn in a more concise and summarized manner. This helps to cut short the revision time required since it helps you to understand the content better, and most importantly, quicker.

Math Lobby hopes that everyone has taken some valuable insight out of this article with regards to learning how to be more productive. So, let’s recap!

1) Always carefully devise a plan – Only with a meticulously thought out plan will you be able to get a smooth flow of tasks done without compromising any valuable time!

2) Keep yourself healthy – Stay fit and healthy to deter viruses and bacteria from taking their chance at your immune system!

3) Produce notes that are effective for your learning – Don’t just copy and do what you are told to, do what you deem best for yourself and being productive will never be an issue ever again!

As always: Work hard, stay motivated and we wish all students a successful and enjoyable journey with Math Lobby!

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