Success is all about doing the right things often.
Your daily life is made up of habits and routines. We wake up at certain times, go certain places, and do things in a certain order.
The habits you maintain throughout your life will change over time, but you should start developing successful habits as soon as possible. Below are 7 habits that can help students be more successful. You don’t have to develop them all at the same time, but start with one and continue to build your life to be more successful. What’s in it for you? A higher GPA, better chance to get into your dream school, higher performance in your job, club, or other student organization.
1. GO TO CLASS
Always go to class. This may come as a shocker (wink) but your teachers are people! And human nature leans towards the fact that people favor the people we know. If your teacher doesn’t know who you are, they are less likely to go out of their way to help you succeed. Some do. Most don’t. If your teacher does know who you are, then they are more likely to help you because they see you putting in the work. It is a simple principle but so often taken advantage of. This is an easy one.
2. Weekly Plan
Monday through Friday often feels like both the longest and shortest time period ever. Things get crazy! Some days we feel like will never end, others are gone in the blink of an eye. One of the biggest changes I experienced as a student was starting to weekly plan. On Sunday nights, I would map out the week. What classes do I have, what is due for those classes? Are there any tests happening this week? Group projects? Map it all out. Even if you never look at it again, doing it once will give you a better expectation of what you must do during the week and then you can fill in some of the things you want to do in between. This is a major game changer. Try it!
3. Prioritize Your Time
When you are able to plan your week ahead, it helps you better plan your days. Learning to organize and prioritize your time can help you get SO MUCH MORE DONE! If a planner is your thing, use that. If an app is better, use that. If sticky notes are your jam, do it! If you don’t have a process, try something! Everyone has different preferences, but the point is that you find yours. You can probably get a lot done trying to remember it all in your head, but once you use a tool I promise you will accomplish more. For starters,
Do something to improve your health every day. Find one snack, park further away, take the long way walking to class, get a workout in. Do something to be active or eat a bit healthier every day.
5. Daily Unplug Time
Spend some time doing something other than scrolling on your phone or thinking about scrolling on your phone. Read a book, go for a walk, spend time with friends or family, just do something not in front of a screen.
6. Participate in Class
This helps you build a better relationship with your teachers. This also helps you stay focused and engaged in class. Take notes. I don’t care if you never look at them again. Write down key points. Read from the textbook. Volunteer for things. Show your teacher, your classmates, and yourself that you are there to learn and make things happen.
7. Turn in Your Homework
I know that certain subjects can be difficult, but school really isn’t that hard. To use an elegant phrase I always tell my students, “Just turn your crap in!”. When you have an assignment, do it. Turn it in. One is greater than zero. Even if you don’t finish the assignment as well as you want to, turning in something is better than turning in nothing. Way too many students are paralyzed by perfection. They don’t turn in an assignment or project because they “didn’t have the time to make it right”. People that use those excuses get zeros. Don’t get zeros.
Pick a habit, and start. None of these will take long to develop, you just need to focus on being more intentional with the time you have each day. Remember, everyone has habits. Since you already have habits you would do well to make sure they are successful ones. Are they simple? Yes, but you have to start somewhere.
What habits have you found successful as a student?