This might not be advice you’ve heard before.
I’ve been a uni student for 6 years and have never heard it and I’ve only been doing following it for a few weeks myself. But I just wanted to share the idea I’ve had because it might strike a chord with you.
Over the course of my time as a uni student I have always approached study the same way – every hour of the day, every day of the week and every week of the semester is a potential time to study.
I definitely don’t study all the time, but I do feel guilty about the fact I’m not studying all of the time.
There is no boundary.
Dealing with no boundaries
I never thought it was a problem because everyone struggles with it.
Every student I know gets that nagging ‘I should be studying’ feeling, even if we’re out somewhere and can’t study. Even if we’re spending time with family and friends. Even if we’re doing something fun purely for the purpose of having a break from studying.
We feel guilty and the guilt is real. And I thought that’s just the way it is.
But a few weeks ago I had a little epiphany when I was reading the 4 Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss.
This isn’t a book that’s necessarily about study, it’s about how to work less (pretty much) and besides a few really interesting time management things I didn’t really think there was much else I could use.
But then I thought – what if I could have weekends completely off, without the thought that we ‘should be’ studying?
Weekends without study
We long for the days when there’ll be a clear distinction between work and play and yes, we’ve even said stuff like ‘I can’t wait to have a full-time job so I can have weekends off’ (don’t worry, I realise this isn’t a reality for a lot of full-time workers either).
We just felt guilty about not studying all the damn time.
We long for the 9 to 5 because we long for someone to tell us we can put the books away at 5pm (or even 8 or 9pm). But why wish away the amazing student lifestyle we have just to get the distinction between work and play?
When I actually thought about it, there’s no reason I have to study on the weekends and there’s definitely no reason I have to feel guilty about not studying on the weekends.
I can see how everyone fell into this habit though. We don’t have anyone telling us when we should be studying and when we shouldn’t – we’re in control. So we feel like it’s something we should be doing all the time and we feel guilty when we don’t.
But of course, just as soon as the idea of not studying on weekends popped into my head I immediately felt myself protesting.
Why it works
There won’t be enough time to do everything! I already study over a full time study load (I’m doing a dual degree of law and finance and a diploma in French) – I need every minute I can get!
And this would be true if I was always productive when I study. But I’m not. A lot of time that I count as ‘studying’ I’m actually doing nothing more than sitting at my desk with a book open and a cup of tea, staring blankly at the words before me. And even when I am actually studying, I’m nowhere near as effective as I could be.
I realised part of the reason I’m not productive during the week is because I tell myself I have the weekend to catch up.
There is no sense of urgency. There is no pressure on my time.
So what if I made it that I couldn’t study on the weekend? What if I used it as a way to get my weekends back (without the guilt) and to be more productive? To me it sounded too good to be true.
Is it even possible? I’m almost 100% sure it will be.
I’m the kind of person that works well with a deadline. I rise to the occasion. When I start an assignment the night before it’s due I get an adrenaline rush equivalent to that of a mother lifting a car off her newborn baby.
If you’re a student you’ll know that the struggle with guilt is real – that feeling that you ‘should be’ studying never seems to go away.
But it is possible – I’ve been doing it for the last month and absolutely loving it!
Sick of the guilt?
You know, you don’t have to study all the time to get good grades (even if you’re not crazy smart), you just need to figure out which tasks are worth your time and do those well (and ignore the rest).
I’ve created a free worksheet that will help you figure out exactly where you’re wasting time, what times of the day (or night) you should be studying and how to get more done in less time.
I really encourage you to download the free worksheet so that you can enjoy weekends guilt-free!
Just click the button below to download your copy!
Let me know what you think! Could this work for you? Would you ever think of trying it?
Don’t forget that comments are always welcome and appreciated – I’d LOVE to hear what you have to say.
P.S. If you’re a procrastinator, keep reading to learn about my online course for procrastinators called Get Out Of Your Own Way:
Take your life to the next level
Four years ago, I found myself trapped in a vicious cycle of procrastination and guilt. Whenever I tried to do simple life tasks (like going to the gym, eating right and organising my time) it felt like I was trying to move mountains!
After work, I was too exhausted to do anything more than make food and lay in bed watching another episode of my favourite show. I kept telling myself I deserved a break, but I never enjoyed it. I felt guilty for wasting my time but I didn’t stop (and when I did find myself with time to do the things I wanted, I just kept procrastinating – gahh!).
And I wish it stopped there, but then I beat myself up for procrastinating! I felt like I was behind everyone else and letting everyone down, so I procrastinated even more.
No matter how many hours I spent reading motivation articles on Pinterest or how many times I filled out a new planner, I just couldn’t make myself change – even though I knew I was the one stopping myself from progressing. And I had all the advice right in front of me!
And because this whole situation was frustrating AF (and I knew I was better than that, even though I didn’t have the evidence to prove it) I dedicated myself to figuring out how to stop sabotaging my own success.
After trying hundreds of different things, it finally clicked! And this year I’ve been able to quit my full-time job for blogging, I’m more productive and focused than I’ve ever been in my life and I’ve finally stopped feeling like I’m behind! Plus it’s actually easy to workout everyday and eat healthy (which I never thought would be possible).
And since everything I’ve learned has COMPLETELY changed my life, I decided to put the very best of it together in a step-by-step course!
My online course for procrastinators
Get Out Of Your Own Way is a self-paced online video course that gives you the tools and mindset shifts you need to stop procrastinating, follow through with all your plans and have the courage to finally pursue your dreams – even if your life is totally overwhelming and you have no idea what you want to do!
I’ll just let you know that this course won’t be for you if you’re looking for quick-fix procrastination tips (let’s be real – you’ve seen all those already and they haven’t worked) or you’re afraid to dig deep and uncover the real reasons you’ve been holding yourself back.
But if you’re ready to make a change and need someone to guide you through the very first step – it could be just the thing you need!