4 great back to school tips to be productive

That inevitable time is approaching us in a few weeks...back to school! After enjoying summer it can be difficult getting back into the swing of things and diving directly into hours of homework and early wake up times. Although going back to school may not be everyone's favourite thing to do, being prepared can make a world of a difference. Here are four back to school tips that will help to make the most of your school year. 

1. Making and following schedules

This is something I always found helpful in terms of time management and organizing everything I have to get done. Making a schedule comes in very handy especially when you know a stressful week is approaching. Let's face it, we've all had those days where our workloads are manageable and then out of nowhere every teacher assigns their tests and final assignments in the same week. Write out what assignments and tests will occur on each day of the week and also plan what days you'll spend allocating your time to work on each assignment. Making schedules is helpful because it's a visual representation of the exact things you need to get done and will ensure that you'll be managing your time properly in advance. 

2. The power of a light snack

One of the worst situations to find yourself in is when it's nowhere near your lunch and you find yourself hungry; it can be extremely difficult to focus on anything other than getting food in your system. To be on the safe side and help prevent this from happening, pack something to munch on to tide you over before lunch. Rather than getting the inevitable bag of chips, try packing something healthy. Give yourself a boost of energy by packing brain food rather than junk food. Stay away from greasy, salty snacks and try healthier options. Berries are considered to be the number one brain food - try packing some of those, or a dried berry trail mix. Feel free to buy the trail mix or make your own - all you'll need are nuts and seeds of your choice to mix with the dried berries and voila! Other unique and healthy snacks to consider packing could be any of the following: Guacamole, avocado, kale chips, coconut, Chia seed pudding, various nuts and seeds, dried mangoes, dark chocolate, and much more. 

3. Keeping organized

Organization is definitely a very important skill to develop when it comes to schoolwork. Keeping binders, notes and anything else in order can make such a difference when the times comes for a test or even exam season. To prepare yourself for school and help keep notes organized, put the date on every note and worksheet you receive all semester. Keeping tabs on the dates will come in handy when referring back to sheets and trying to find information for a test when the time comes. Use dividers and sticky notes to help keep each subject separated. If you wanted, you could even take notes for each subject in a different coloured pen so you never get the notes mixed up with one another. 

4. Properly dealing with stress

Although school may not be the most fun or ideal place to be all the time, keeping a positive mindset and taking care of yourself will help to get you through the semester. It can be an overwhelming environment sometimes so it's very important to take care of yourself before you commit to doing anything else. Remember that your mental health is more important than any perfect grade and you should never put schoolwork above your own well being. Dealing with stress can be difficult but it can be as simple as taking half an hour to yourself before starting homework that will make small differences. Talk to family, friends, guidance counselors or anyone else who cares for you about how you're feeling. Know that whatever happens, the sun will come up tomorrow and every day is fresh start. A single mark in school does not define who you are as a person, so never let it affect your well being. 

Although school is something we're not all looking forward to returning to at the end of the summer, it's inevitable, and preparing in advance makes a real difference. Hopefully these tips will help make the school year run smoothly!