TIPS FOR STAYING ORGANIZED IN SCHOOL AND IN LIFE

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As students who are also employed and try to have a social life, we get it – life can be a little crazy sometimes. If you’re anything like us, it’s easy to be motivated at the beginning of the semester only to become overwhelmed and drop the ball by the time midterms roll around. To help you coast your way through to finals, we’re sharing some of our tips and tricks to keep you on track.

Keep a Day-Planner
Paper planner, on your phone, online… Whatever it may be, get yourself a day planner. We are big fans of the good old-fashioned paper day-timer, though are crazy enough to use all three options to keep ourselves on track. A big convenience of purchasing electronics from the same brand is that you’ll be able to sync up your calendars, a sad fact that Sam realized after purchasing her Samsung phone that is not at all compatible with her MacBook Pro.

Write in all of your assignments in your planner at the beginning of the semester, as well as work and whatever other commitments you might have. It makes it super easy to look ahead to what you’ve got going on next week.

Write a To-Do List
In that same vein, writing a to-do list is very helpful for determining how you should manage your day. By writing out everything (big or small) that you need to do, you have prioritize the most important to least important tasks at hand. There are numerous apps that allow you to create to-do lists electronically (Wunderlist, ToDoist and TeuxDeux are great options), but we find that there is a certain satisfaction that comes from crossing items off the list in real life.

By planning out your week ahead of time, it makes it a lot easier to set up your to-do list and accomplish your goals.

A Tidy Workspace
Some may find that getting schoolwork done at school is their best option to avoid distractions. We are not those people. Gabi is in an online program and Sam likes to have her own stuff around her, so working at home works for us. Sam lives in a teeny tiny downtown apartment, and having a tidy space is key to successfully getting down to work.

Self Control
…Is hard to have, right? It is so easy to get distracted by the Internet and our cellphones that sometimes you need a helping hand to get rid of those distractions for you. In comes Self Control, an extension for Mac that allows you to blacklist websites that you find most distracting for a chosen length of time. Boom – buh-bye distractions. Just make sure to hide your cellphone.

The Pomodoro Method
Gabi brought this one at some point over our university careers, and it’s now Sam’s preferred method for getting through lengthy readings. The Pomodoro method is essentially a productive way to study. What you do is set a timer for 20 minutes of work followed by a 5-minute break. Repeat this four times before taking a ten-minute break. There is a convenient website that does the timing for you that can be found here.

This post first appeared on with wanderlust.

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