It’s the first week of classes for Spring Semester, and I am realizing something…I shouldn’t have sworn off 8am courses. During Jan Term I didn’t start class until noon, and I thought it was going to be the coolest thing ever. I planned to sleep in until ten every morning, relax in my room, and get ready on my own time, then head off to class. After a week of this, though, I realized it wasn’t my ideal schedule. I actually sort of hated waiting around until noon, going to class, and then having my day basically gone by the time I finished class at 2:35pm. I wanted to be more productive, and I wanted to feel like I really accomplished something when I went to bed. And I don’t mean just feel like accomplished my homework for class. I wanted to do more with my day.
Since I have all morning class this semester, with the exception of a leadership class on Mondays, and a lab on Thursdays, I finish class by noon on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday. Following class, I have time to go workout, grab a bite to eat, do homework, grab dinner, finish homework, then do anything fun. By anything fun I mean I have time to plan blog posts, read a “for fun” novel, catch up on TV shows, or spend time with friends. I have the tendency to be super lazy in the mornings if I don’t have class, so I love having class early so that I can get it out of the way and leave the rest of the day completely open. I also have a hard time doing homework if my schedule is built around really awkward breaks. Last semester, I had class at 10:30MWF, then I had another class at 2:45MWF, and I hardly ever accomplished anything during that break because it just wasn’t enough time to finish all my first class’s homework, and I don’t like to start homework then stop halfway through.
So, moral to the story here? I love productive mornings. I love feeling like I have tons of time to do things, and I love going to bed feeling like I lived a full day. If you’re looking to have a really productive morning there are a few ways to accomplish this. First, try scheduling all your classes for the morning starting at 8am. This is smart because once you graduate, the chances are you’ll have to be up early and at work early, so getting a head start on this routine is always smart. You’ll also have more time in the afternoon for better studying. However, I know some colleges make scheduling classes at times you really want is difficult, so I give you option b: drink a cup of tea or coffee (can be decaf if you aren’t huge on caffeine) while you’re getting ready. This will warm you up to the day, and get you thinking, and make you feel like your day is starting. Third, read the paper (try The New York Times, your campus publication, or The New Yorker). I’ve found reading something other than homework reading first thing in the morning gets my brain working, but doesn’t stress me out because I don’t have to pay super close attention. Fourth, make your bed. This way your room will look tidy and clean. I realized recently that if my room is untidy, or if my bed is unmade, I get a little more stressed, and feel like I should be cleaning up while I’m trying to study.
How do you keep your mornings productive?