improve productivity after school

All the high schoolers can relate to one problem which is the most hardest to overcome is a good time management schedule. Juggling studies along with a social life and extracurricular activities are probably the worst combination of stress and anxiety.

When we were in Junior High, our time schedule was limited and amazingly handled by our dear parents, but growing up is not as easy as one might think for it to be.

Although there are exceptional students who are immensely talented in the particular category of studying, getting good grades, giving their friends time all the while tending to their hobbies and other out of school talent shows they want to participate in, some students (me being included) are absolutely bonkers at it.

In our generation, socializing is critically the most important thing for a high schooler, otherwise you are labelled as an outcast. And trust me no one likes being an outcast. This is where most of us stand faulty and guilty. We tend to apply our attention in one particular duty and neglect the others.

After watching tons of YouTube videos about how to stop procrastination and organizing hundreds of failed planners, I could finally come up with a strategy to make myself excel at the said things. The application of the right strategies are the best way to get going.

1. Organization

Paper pins with blue and Yellow Background

Organizing is what you do before to do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up. Our brains tend to work faster at an organized and easily accessible work space than a cluttered and confusing one.

Therefore it is advised to have a designated study space other than just studying on your bed or on the floor hence invest in a desk and place it in the brightest place in your room to ignore light in-deficiency. Have everything you need to survive on that table so that you don’t have to get up too often and find yourself getting distracted.

Buy files to hold your papers, pen stands and small boxes to store your paper clips and pins to prevent a messy table. Students often prefer to have a noticeboard to pin up their immediate work and flash cards so that they don’t forget what to be done next and it is one of the best strategies so far.

Explain the immediate exhaustion after coming from school and the laziness that follows with. At the beginning of high school when I was struggling with keeping track of what I want to-achieve the semester, my mother had taught me to create a vision board for the month and honestly it has been one of the best hacks to conduct and I still find it helpful in my college life.

Organization is not about perfection, it is about efficiency, reducing stress and clutter, saving time and money and improving your overall quality of life- Cristina Scalise.

2. Prioritize your to-do list

Notebook indicating To do List with Pen

Plan your day to be successful. I personally like to keep a journal for my daily plans and I find it extremely helpful since I prefer knowledge the pen and paper way. My friends, in contrast love to keep an online planner which they can look at in their cell phones and not having to carry a journal all the time.

It is most efficient and easy to carry. Online planners also take a lot lesser time for you to create since the templates are already made and reminders of a particular task could be set. For the ones who prefer it the old way, I suggest you to work smart by not wasting so much time creating a template rather printing it out.

Use multicolor pens, color pencils, highlighters, bookmarks; anything attention grabbing to mark the most important task to fulfill. Color code everything into categories to please the brain and make it interesting so that you actually look forward to doing it.

Although sometimes the time it takes for making a planner actually consumes more than the time it takes for you to do the job hence I suggest to keep it short and interesting. Then again I want to clarify that having a bit of planned escapism or down time is not a bad thing, providing it is planned.

What most people tend to do is just allow all those activities to distract them throughout the day and then wonder where all the time went

3. Study Hacks

Hands Writting Study Stuff

A productive student is a well performing student. The reason we go to school is for the sole purpose that we efficiently use our knowledge to get better grades.

Therefore it is very important to pay immense attention at school so that when you get back home, the given home works will not require as much time as it would normally need since you can just write what you know and not have to look for it again. Also this gives you extra time to revise. Like mentioned earlier,

  • USE BRIGHT COLOURS in your notes and create flash cards.
  • Get out of your fancy clothes and slip into something loose and comfortable.
  • Keep your shoes on; studies show that keeping your shoes on makes you feel grounded and prevents you from getting easily distracted
  • Personally I work better when I am listening to music whilst studying only when I am noting things down or writing. Research has shown that music helps you to stay motivated and active. On the other hand, my brother likes to study in silence in a closed off place with nothing distracting him.
  • Put your phone on silent or just turn it off, social media and the constant pinging of your cell phone is actually the first reason of distraction.
  • Study in a new place once in a while when you’re finding it difficult to concentrate at your regular desk. For example: the school library-convenient and silent, the park- studying in fresh air to the sound of leaves rustling and birds chirping is all you need for your mind to focus, dining room, etc.
  • Break your syllabus in small goals which is easily achievable and overcome one at a time.
  • Have one group study session but warning you ahead not every day. We all know group studies never end well.

Do not overload your brain, I repeat do not. Our concentration span is approximately of forty - fifty five minutes approximately. You may notice that your mind often wanders (as often as several times a minute at times). Each time just say “Be here now” and refocus.

The will to succeed is important, but what’s more important is the will to prepare.

  • Motivation- we genuinely lack motivation when it comes to studying. It is inevitable for teenagers. Hence download an app that makes you stay motivated, take a cold shower before studying to jump start your nerves.
  • Do not let your home works pile up
  • If you see something that can be done in two minutes, do not put it off.

Be flexible in your schedule. If you need an extra hour on a subject, continue with it and then do a little juggling to make up the study time you encroached on. You will probably need to modify your schedule from time to time.

4. The night before an exam

Man Studying Night before Exam with cup of tea

We have all been there, studying our asses off the night/ day before an exam. It is easy to think that we can cram up the whole syllabus in one single day but trust me when I say this, it does not. This heavy burden affects your mental health dearly and well the outcome is not so great either.

Your grades do not turn out well. Robert Collier once said “Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out”. Although these tips are not much extravaganzas it still will give you a power boost.

  • Find power drinks free of loaded sugar and caffeine
  • Set up your study space and keep your facts straight for the upcoming subject and get rid of the others
  • Ask time from your family and tell them to respect your privacy and not disturb you while you are studying
  • Keep a snack by your side so you can munch and study at the same time. Avoid eating a full meal
  • Take a break to stretch out your back bones and get dinner in the meantime
  • Make flash cards, it is a very effective memory-aid tool that can help you learn new things quickly
  • Eat the biggest frog first
  • Study the first twenty percent and the last 20 percent of the syllabus very carefully, the last few chapters tend to include seventy percent information about the subject.
  • Get your sibling to test you verbally, to identify your mistakes and work on it.
  • No matter what you do, make sure your concentration does not falter. The results that come with it are very rewarding.

These are just some words written on a piece of paper. If you really really want to better your grades and be productive you have to try to stay consistent with your goals and plans for the day. If you feel like you are giving less time towards your friends and activities, feel free to do that after school.

Do not start studying right after you get home, this will make you procrastinate due to the tiredness. Have lunch and go out to play or hang out with your friends but make sure to set a suitable time for you to study and use that time efficiently.

Do not let anyone disturb you in that time frame and if you stay true to yourself and maintain this consistently, you will start to see big outcomes. Habits like these are very crucial for successful people.

With an increasing number of new technologies and an expanding global population, self-studying is on the rise. Self- studying develop intellectual independence and explore subject matter they personally find interesting.


If you had difficulty understanding something by your teachers, come home and teach yourself. Know to always take notes. Set realistic goals and review the material the same day you learned it. If you study to remember, you will forget but if you study to understand, you will remember.

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