Are you always unmotivated, rushing your homework at the last minute? Would you rather do anything than settle down to homework? The good news is that you can train yourself to get your work done, even if you can’t train yourself to love homework! It’s a question of learning to prioritise, and practising self-discipline. The reward will be that you’ll be free of the stress created by having to rush assignments, and because you have more time to work on each assignment you’ll be able to produce much better work (and get higher marks!). So, here’s the way to ensure you get your homework in on time …
Get a diary or planner
Being organised is the key to homework efficiency. You’ll need a diary or planner. You can print out planners at home; look for one that has enough space to write in. If you’re only given homework with shorter deadlines, print out two weekly planners so that you can clearly see what is due in this week and next week. This means you can prioritise what is due in first. As soon as you get an assignment, mark the deadline on your planner. Note down other commitments and classes, so you can see your free time, and plan when you are going to work on each paper.
Work before fun
Yes, it’s boring doing your assignments and reading. But there’s a lot to be said for getting your work out of the way before going out to meet your friends or watching your favourite box set. You’ll avoid the stress of panicking that you’re running out of time. You won’t spend the entire evening thinking that you’re going to have to work late or rush your essay. Instead, you’ll be able to completely relax and enjoy yourself. It’s not about being a “good” student, it’s about being a smart one. Let other people think that it’s clever to leave everything to the last minute. It isn’t. And there aren’t that many people who can work to the best of their abilities while watching the clock.
Do your reading as early as possible
If you leave your reading until the last minute, you’ll run into a problem – in fact, several problems. You’ll have to rush writing your essay, and that won’t lead to a good result. You risk missing your deadline, annoying your teacher, and losing marks. But you may also find it hard to do the reading at all, given that other students who are working on the same assignment will also be dashing around the library looking for essential books. It really pays to be organised and get started on your reading as early as possible.
It’s hard to be disciplined when there are so many distractions. But put your phone aside, and resist browsing the internet unless you’re looking for something related to your homework topic. Forget about looking at social media, watching videos, or even reading the news; all that can wait until you’re done with your work for the day. If you really find it difficult to stop looking at your favourite sites, you can get programs and add-ons that block them for a certain time, or limit how much time you can spend on them.
Humans respond just as well to incentives as animals do, so when you’ve finished your homework give yourself a small reward. That could be something tangible like a snack or an episode of your favourite program. Or you could put a small sum of money aside every time you finish an assignment and earmark it for shopping later. The point is that it has to be something that you will enjoy and look forward to.
Put these steps into practice and you’ll gradually start to get into a disciplined mindset. You’ll learn to prioritise work, and it will feel very good indeed to know that you’ve finished your homework ahead of the deadline! Becoming this organised will also give you time to look at your work again and revise it if there’s anything you’d like to change. It’s definitely far better than rushing to finish your assignment at the last minute!