Juggling studies and work is a real struggle, as many students know. It is difficult to maintain a study-life balance, but it’s not impossible. Learn the fundamental principles of healthy productivity to avoid burnout, stress, and anxiety! You’ll see how your productivity depends on how you spend your free time. This article offers our top productivity tips to help you become the best version of yourself. You’ll find out how rest rejuvenates your motivation.
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⚡ Productive Things to Do: TOP Selection for 2023
- Start a journal or a photo album.
- Clean or decorate your home.
- Learn a programming language.
- Sell your old clothes or shoes.
- Watch an online course.
- Create a dream board.
- Try gardening.
- Listen to a podcast.
- Learn a new healthy recipe.
- Start a side hustle.
⏱️ How to Be Productive 101
Before setting your productivity goals, it is crucial to understand what this term means. Let’s discuss productivity and what it truly means to be productive.
1. What Is Productivity?
There are many different definitions of productivity. The term is widely applied in economics when speaking about the production of goods, workforce efficiency, or business growth. Another science that investigates productivity is psychology. Psychologists define three types of productivity: physical, intellectual, and emotional.
|In simple terms, productivity describes how much you can get done in a specific period of time. How many words do you write per hour? How many shifts can you take at your job a week? Productivity is about achieving the best results you can by managing your time and skills wisely.|
2. Things to Know About Productivity
Productivity is a broad term comprising different characteristics. We recommend paying attention to the following aspects to understand the nuances of this word.
|Productivity can be measured.||To see how productive something is, we can count the amount of time, money, and effort we put into the process. However, we should also consider fun and enjoyment when measuring personal productivity. It’s hard to do things productively if you aren’t keen on them!|
|Productivity can be individual and collective.||A proverb says – two heads are better than one. Indeed, some people achieve better results while working in a group. On the other hand, others complete tasks faster when working by themselves.|
|Productivity can be defined differently.||Some employees focus on the quality of the results, while others are concerned with how fast they were achieved. Understanding how productivity differs from one person to another is very important.|
|Productivity should be consistent.||To stay productive for a long time, you should maintain a work-life balance. Productivity is a skill you can learn, but only with regular training.|
|Productivity should stay healthy.||Constant work under pressure can negatively affect your mental health and personal life. Remember that productivity is not a competition!|
3. Tips on How to Be Productive
- Pay more attention to planning. You can use online software or a diary.
- Focus on time management. Try the Pomodoro method to avoid distractions.
- Workout to get rid of stress.
- Sort your emails every day, use flags and folders.
- Take a digital detox when needed.
- Avoid multitasking.
- Reflect on mistakes and turn them into lessons.
- Try meditation or other spiritual practices.
- Eliminate meaningless communication.
- Take regular breaks to avoid burn out.
- Eat healthy food to stay energetic.
- Learn to say “no.”
- Set your priorities.
- Start your morning earlier to have a nice routine.
🧘 Productive Things to Do: Best Ideas
✔️ Exercising and playing sports.
Sports can help you not only to stay fit but to manage stress and anxiety levels. When you exercise or play a team sport, your body releases endorphins. This break is essential for your mental health!
✔️ Spending time with friends and family.
Socializing prevents the feeling of loneliness and improves your self-confidence. Spending time with a friend or a relative can be a good time to get some advice. Also, studying in a group can sometimes be more effective than doing it by yourself.
✔️ Self-development and self-education.
Self-improvement has never been easier! There are plenty of available online courses to choose from. You can study a new subject or develop a new skill. Become the best version of yourself!
✔️ Arts and crafts.
Painting or taking pictures encourages people’s creative skills and makes them feel calmer. A hobby can often turn into a job, so don’t underestimate it.
✔️ Self-care activities.
Meditation and mindfulness practices reduce the risks of depression and other mental disorders. Choose activities that make you happier to minimize frustration throughout the day.
Helping other people brings feelings of accomplishment, which can improve your confidence. Working in a pet shelter or volunteering for a community project is a great way to make new friends!
✔️ Traveling and camping.
Taking a road trip or exploring other countries expands your understanding of the world. Traveling also helps you to recharge and come back to your normal life well-rested.
🎨 Productive Things to Do After School [Instead of Scrolling Through Your Phone]
We’ve come up with a list of activities you can do to spend your free time productively. Perfect for high schoolers, students, and graduates!
Social interactions with friends and family provide meaning to our life. Together it is easier to grow and explore the world around us!
Prepare Food for Tomorrow
Prepare food in advance to have more time in the morning. A good meal can brighten up your day.
Read a Book
Non-fiction books are great knowledge resources, while novels or comics can reduce stress and anxiety.
Listen to Podcasts
There are podcasts on various topics that you can listen to while doing other tasks. Podcasts are also helpful in learning a foreign language.
If you don’t know where to begin, look at our recommendations:
- 13 Educator-Approved Podcasts to Listen to This Year | Edutopia
- Listen and Learn: The 40 Best Educational Podcasts
- 35 Best Podcasts for Kids in Elementary, Middle, & High School
Watch Educational Videos
Visualization makes it easier to understand any kind of new information. Educational videos can be short and sweet, or detailed and profound.
Here’s the list of websites with the best video content:
- Online Courses – Learn Anything, On Your Schedule | Udemy
- Online Courses, Documentaries, Series & More | Wondrium
- Coursera | Online Courses & Credentials From Top Educators. Join for Free
- edX | Free Online Courses by Harvard, MIT, & more | edX
- FutureLearn: Online Courses and Degrees from Top Universities
- Khan Academy | Free Online Courses, Lessons & Practice
- TED: Ideas Worth Spreading
- CosmoLearning | Your Free Online School: Courses, Video Lectures, Documentaries, Images, Books, and more
People say that a healthy body equals a healthy mind. Indeed, doing sports benefits your general well-being and inspires new achievements.
Everybody knows the advantages of meditation, but people often wonder where to start. Our advice is to try mobile apps or join a local yoga center.
Check out resources that are great for beginners:
- Mindful – healthy mind, healthy life
- Meditation for Beginners – Headspace
- The Beginner’s Guide to Meditation | Shape
- How to Start Meditating – The New York Times
- Meditation for Beginners: 20 Practical Tips for Understanding the Mind – zen habits
Catch up on Current Events
To keep up with any conversation, you should be aware of what is going on in the world. Luckily, the morning newspaper is not the only option.
Here’s a list of the most trustworthy news resources:
- Associated Press News: Breaking News
- Home – BBC News
- The Bureau of Investigative Journalism
- Breaking International News & Views | Reuters
- The Economist
- ProPublica — Investigative Journalism and News in the Public Interest
- Latest World & National News & Headlines – USATODAY.com
Declutter Your Space
Organizing your apartment can be therapeutic. Do it whenever you feel like you need a change!
Journal & Plan Goals
Journaling is a way of understanding your experience. Reflect on what you’ve learned to feel more productive.
Make a Budget
It is essential to control your spending to achieve your larger financial goals. Luckily, there are plenty of apps that can help you.
Learn how to manage your budget like a pro with these websites:
- YNAB – You Need A Budget
- Budget Tracker & Planner | Free Online Money Management | Mint
- Simplifi by Quicken
- Zeta | Master Money as a Team
- Personal Finance Tools, Wealth Management, Guides | Personal Capital
Take a Course
Taking courses outside your major will broaden your horizons.
Organize Your Computer / Phone
A good organizational system can save you a lot of time! Make sure that your gadgets are free from useless data.
Organize Your Inbox
Every day we receive an overwhelming number of emails, which makes sorting them so important. Use labels to avoid missing important info and wasting time on spam.
Focus on a Hobby
A hobby is a superb way to relax and have a life outside college or work. Keep doing things you like!
Go for a Walk
Walking is an easy exercise that can keep your body fit and your mind free from anxiety.
Making things yourself is not that difficult with all the tutorials available online. DIY is a nice distraction from daily stress.
Starting a self-care routine improves your concentration skills and reduces the chances of depression. Remember that you are your most important person.
Make a Bucket List
A bucket list consists of all the goals and dreams you want to accomplish in life. Having your bucket list will inspire you during the hard times.
Consider Starting a Side Hustle
Starting a side job like tutoring or babysitting can help students gain financial freedom.
Check our recent guide on side hustles. We’ve collected the best recommendations and side hustle ideas.
Fix What You’ve Been Postponing for a Long Time
Procrastination is a struggle for many students. Our advice here is to do things the moment you have time, instead of worrying about them later.
Learn a New Skill
Learning a new skill will significantly help when applying for a job. You can also discover your hidden talents!
Learn About Investing
Investing is not as complex as it might seem. Having an additional income is a step forward in finding financial security.
- Introduction to Investing
- Learning Investing with Online Courses, Classes, & Lessons | edX
- 10 of the Best Investing Books for Beginners | Investing | US News
Volunteering is a chance to meet like-minded people and explore new countries. Volunteers inspire other people and make the world a better place.
We’ve come up with the best volunteer projects for you to apply:
- 70 Community Service Project Ideas | DoSomething.org
- VolunteerMatch – Where Volunteering Begins
- Local Volunteer Opportunities Near Me | Red Cross
Plan a Trip
If you need to refresh your mind, taking a trip might be the best option. Traveling brings many new opportunities!
Go to a Virtual Museum
Virtual trips to museums make it possible to visit the British Museum in London or the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam while staying at home.
Check out the most interesting virtual tours that we’ve come up with:
- Musée d’Orsay, Paris, France — Google Arts & Culture
- Museum of the World – British Museum
- National Gallery of Art, Washington DC, United States — Google Arts & Culture
- Albertina Museum, Vienna, Austria — Google Arts & Culture
- Visit the museum as you have never done before! | Fundació Gala – Salvador Dalí
- Virtual Visit – Hermitage Museum, Saint-Petersburg
- The Met Collection – The Metropolitan Museum of Art
- Kunsthaus Zürich, Switzerland — Google Arts & Culture
- Online Tours – The Louvre Museum
Deep Clean Your Room
Having piles of clothes and paper in your room makes it challenging to find things. Keep your room tidy so that you can be productive.
If you feel like you need some motivation, try rearranging the furniture in your apartment. Put your table in front of the window to enjoy some vitamin D!
Research Organizations Where You Can Donate
You can bring positive energy to your life by helping others.
We would recommend learning more about these charity organizations:
- Charity Navigator – Your Guide To Intelligent Giving | Home
- Online Fundraising Websites To Raise Money For Anything
- GlobalGiving: donate to charity projects around the world
- GoFundMe: #1 Fundraising Platform for Crowdfunding
Cook What You’ve Always Wanted to Try
Cooking can be true art! Find a fancy recipe and take yourself on a home date.
📌 Being Productive without Your Phone – Summary
We want you to remember that productivity can be understood in different ways. Some students, who are maximalists, try their best to achieve the perfect result every time. Others aim to complete tasks as quickly as possible and do not care that much about the quality of their work. Whereas others seek a proper study-life balance, rest regularly, and don’t experience burnouts.
To boost your productivity, focus on how you spend your free time. There are plenty of inspiring activities for your mental health that do not include scrolling your phone. Journaling, cooking, meditating – choose something that will inspire you throughout the day! And finally, take care of yourself and remember that productivity shouldn’t be toxic.
- Productivity Definition | Investopedia
- Productivity | Psychology Today
- 9 Habits of Successful People | Forbes
- Top 5 Tips for Being Productive at Work | The University of Alabama at Birmingham
- 10 Simple Ways To Be More Productive at Work | Indeed.com
- 33 Productive Things to Do at Home When You’re Bored • FamilySearch
- The Productivity Guide: My Best Productivity and Time-Management Tips