I may not be as witty or creative as Dr. Chang, but I hope to help you untangle your summer with a tip on quarantining yourself to become a more efficient stellar student! Summer courses are fast, condensed, and a great way to stay on track as you work toward your goals. Even if you aren’t taking summer courses the season will speed by with a list of projects, fun, and other responsibilities. So I’m taking some time to pass along a few great tips from, you guessed it, Cal Newport and his post “Monday Master Class: The Quarantine Method for Producing Better Work in Less Total Hours“.
If you’ve had an FYE course with me you’ve heard that the location and surroundings you study in are very important to how effective and efficiently you study, as is the time of day you choose to study. To achieve great results relatively painlessly you need to take these two factors into consideration. Keep track of your mood, energy level, and ability to focus every day for a week. Use this to decide on an optimal study time. Keep in mind that you may be most effective at 8:00 in the morning or 8:00 at night but it might be more convenient to study at 4:00 in the afternoon. If you want to study for longer hours and retain less then you can choose the 4:00 study time. Or you can adjust your schedule to free-up the hours where you are most effective and cut back on the amount of overall hours you study.
Choose the tools and setting that make you feel inspired and help you focus. For me this means a clear desk or table and my favorite pens and Roll-a-bind notebooks. I also like to study in open spaces with as much quiet as possible. A comfortable cafe or bookstore are sometimes the best places for me. I feel the constraints of actually being busy because the people around me assume I’m busy! So I will turn off my phone, block any unnecessary computer applications, and “quarantine” myself during my most productive hours of the day. Freeing-up hours by being totally focused on the task at hand.
So “untangle” a busy summer and let me know how it is going!
Stay productive and wear your sunscreen!