Frantic and exhausting – isn’t this what the life of most computer science students is like?
Each time you cope up with the previous tasks and try to get back to normality you get some new tasks to deal with. Your schedule dwindles, you don’t get time to do all you wish to do and your plans get thrashed.
Although you might be trying hard to make the best out of the time you get each day, things don’t seem to get easy. Perhaps, you’re already giving your work all that it takes. Yet, there are still a few ways which you can use to simplify your work-life.
You can still ease your work-life by inculcating some effective ideas and changing your work habits a bit.
We’ve made a list of 14 genuine ways you can use to simplify your work-life. You may be already aware of some of them, and some might be new to you as well. Start using whichever ways you find suitable for yourself.
1. Use supplementary gadgets
Right tools are undoubtedly necessary.
But the awesome ones can do miracles for you.
Don’t underestimate the usefulness and the amount of improvement buying a few gadgets can bring to your work.
For instance, just because you have a touchpad on laptop doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t buy a mouse.
If you need to constantly deal with numeric keys while creating 3D graphics but your laptop doesn’t have a numeric pad then using a USB numeric keypad can surely save your time.
The purpose of doing all this can be boiled down to just one sensible reason – you don’t want to waste your time doing unnecessary things because you could be doing something more purposeful instead.
There’s a great deal of tech gadgets available out there – obviously you don’t need all of them, but you should get whatever can assist you in your work.
Here are some quick tips and suggestions to help you decide what’s right for you:
- If you use multiple computers or devices at once but prefer portability then get a Logitech Bluetooth Multi-Device keyboard as this single keyboard would fulfill all your needs and cut-off some hassle from your life.
- To organize a workspace that’s cluttered with wires and cables, get some cable clips, cable managers and wire clip nails. You won’t need reorganize the cables on your desk again.
- Buy a complementary USB hub for charging your cellphone and speakers. A single USB socket will serve all your needs after that.
- Get a Bluetooth speaker if your computer has low volume and you’re fond of music. Three other significant reasons – they’re wireless, portable and cool.
- Finally, buy an extension cord or surge protector for setting up a room wired for your convenience and ease. Don’t remain a slave of whatever the electrician has done to your house or workplace.
Also, if there are certain gadgets or accessories which you think can ease your life — buy them.
In the end it’s all about considering your preferences, budget and needs to create an environment for yourself where you can say focused and…happy.
If the there’s a better option available to you, get it.
Using the same old resources is fine as far as they fulfill your needs and you’re low on budget. You can go on with what you have in that case.
But the problems starts when the old stuff you use becomes and obstacle and intervenes in your work. Better upgrade if you find yourself stuck in such a situation. It’ll surely pay-off.
Install a newer operating system if you need to. Purchase a new laptop if the previous one doesn’t fit in anymore. Get the newer versions of all the applications as well.
Otherwise upgrade some specific components such as RAM, processor, or buy an external SSD hard-disk for faster data access if you prefer to improve what you already have.
It’s mostly a fair deal.
Sync – it’s a powerful feature.
Firstly, try to use the applications which can be connected to your email or sync with other apps. Not only this will reduce the hassle you generally deal with but also skyrocket the level of convenience.
The reason for doing it is simple – organization.
You won’t need to exchange data in several devices or applications and neither will you need to worry about taking backups or losing your important information.
If you’re looking for specific recommendations then here are a few we suggest:
- Pocket and Feedly for reading and bookmarking.
- Todoist and Colornote for to-do lists and scheduling.
- Google Drive and Dropbox for online storage.
Occasionally sync your devices and be on the safer side — although the feature is spontaneous in most applications.
4. Collaborate online
If you’re blessed with a fast internet connection then try to keep your business online. Working the old way will only waste your time which you can otherwise utilize productively.
For instance, if you need to constantly share you code and tweak it along with your team members then you can do it using Github.
For sharing documents and files you can create shared folders on cloud storage services such as Google Drive or some other place.
If you need to create images and designs for various purposes then Canva is a great option for you to do it online.
Doing this reduces the trouble of preserving, searching and exchange of work. There are several other resources available as well — you just need to find out whatever fulfills your requirements.
5. Work virtually
You and your laptop equals to office.
The above equation precisely defines the modern work setting. Most of the time that’s all you need, combined with a fine internet connection.
If you’re to do certain work after going to office, either during your internship or job, then you skip the office sometimes and choose to do the work virtually instead. This would save your time and the cost of traveling.
This can be a huge advantage when you’re engaged in other activities such as volunteering or are busy studying, and need to create some space in your day to day routine for doing other tasks.
6. Use a fast internet connection (or go offline)
A fast internet connection isn’t an expenditure but rather an investment in your education and personal development. The sooner you get it the better. Perhaps, during the first year of your college itself.
This will allow you to access innumerable tools and websites which will likely save you the cost of some books, magazines, courses, and ultimately pay back in some or the other form.
Nevertheless, don’t be solely dependent on the internet either and gather the offline tools you might need since they’re handy.
What if you’re going somewhere an internet connection isn’t fast enough to fulfill you purpose? Keep all the offline tools and programs available to avoid coming to a standstill.
The overall motive is to make all that you need available to you so that you can keep continuing your work regardless of any interventions.
7. Use the right tools and software
This means, the ones which are right for you.
Now this may depend on your requirements, needs, the system you use and a bunch of other factors. Yet, there’s always a set of software which would suit you needs perfectly.
This will avoid you from getting tangled into superfluous stuff and help you stick to your priorities without bothering you.
Like, you don’t need to use the tools used by professional developers if you need to create basic programs. In that case a simple IDE would be perfect for you.
If you have a limited internet plan then you might want to use Opera Turbo browser instead of Chrome to avoid any needless consumption of data.
Spend some time finding the right things for yourself to simplify your work-life.
Which means, research on the internet, keep your current requirements and system configurations in mind and arrive on a conclusion accordingly.
8. Learn work-hacks
Start finding ways to ease your work.
This might mean learning new habits, using smart methods or adapting some new rules for the betterment of your work.
To be specific, this can be set of practices you can include in your work, such as writing a to-do list on your computer screen using sticky notes, using a desktop reminder to take gap after every 20 minutes, batching a set of easy tasks altogether or doing simple exercises at your desk itself.
As you go on including healthy habits at work you don’t to make any significant effort to ease your work since you get used to it.
9. Seek help
Ask others what you don’t know, learn from others as much as you can and request them to help you out whenever you’re stuck.
While it makes sense to work out problems before bothering others, staying stuck doesn’t.
Whenever possible try to create a synergistic work environment around yourself by helping out others with their problems and seeking help from others. Focus of mutual prosperity.
The truth is that most people are willing to help others, so don’t hold yourself by making any assumptions. There are several benefits of asking for help.
10. Hunt shortcuts
Any kind of shortcuts.
Explore the features of your computer you don’t yet know about. Find easier ways to do something you’re always required to do. There’s nothing wrong about cutting corners as far as it doesn’t affect you negatively.
There’s always a simpler of doing things. Find it.
What wastes you time? Cut it off from your work. Also, don’t waste time doing tasks which don’t contribute much to your work but consume your time and energy.
For example, it’s alright to copy-paste code when you’re running busy and aren’t able to figure out everything within a deadline.
Use your previous projects for creating new ones if starting again from scratch seems tedious.
It makes sense to take shortcuts instead of slogging without a practical reason.
11. Mind your workspace
Create an environment which contributes to your productivity.
This starts with organizing your desk, decluttering your computer screen, arranging books on the shelf and positioning your belongings as per your preferences. Doing this takes out the confusion from your work to some extent.
Once you organize your workspace and align it with your personality you’ll feel more inclined towards working and become less prone to work-stress, anxiety and disorganization.
You can even make some changes to your workplace to induce more playfulness in your work.
This may include sticking a motivational poster on a wall, using stationery of your favorite brand or placing a Bluetooth speaker next to your desk if you prefer listening to music or podcasts on the go.
These little changes matter.
12. Go minimal
Sometimes you need nothing more than what fulfills your purpose.
If you want stay focused on your work then you need to get easy about tools and productivity to keep things simple. Technology keeps getting updated and you can find better ways, however it’s equally important to maintain stability amid so many changes.
All the options you have can make you confused and breed unnecessary chaos. To avoid this, it becomes crucial to stick to a few options and skip the rest.
Read this article by the minimalists to understand the whole thing in a simple way. In short, technology is a rabbit hole which can entrap you and minimalism is the cure to it.
13. Make work cooler
Work seems like a burden because you get bored with it. It tires you. That’s why it seems hard and you shun it.
It doesn’t have to be this way. Find a way out to make your work cooler and fun.
Maybe by installing a cool game in your computer to play during tiny breaks, listening to game soundtracks on noise-cancelling headphones to avoid getting distracted, browsing a few random facts on the Internet to chuckle, or by organizing a mini-party by buying some snacks and beverages.
Or just shut your computer, quit your work, step out of your room and interact with those around you. Live like a human.
14. Discuss with fellows and create a lot
The best way to grow is to work together.
Create a circle of individuals who are passionate about what they do and share similar interests. Stay with the enthusiastic people who love their thing.
Doing this will ultimately inspire you to work better and harder.
You’ll be motivated to do great things as you’ll always have some people by your side who trust you and whom you can ask for help. These people can be your hostel friends, roommates or neighbors.
By doing so, you’ll become a part of community which promotes mutual learning and tries to keep coming up with all possible ways to ascend.
Discuss a lot, share whatever you learn and teach others. You’ll thrive faster. A lot faster.
Better results can be achieved when the quality of work-life is given as much attention as work itself.
It’s not always about how hard you work or how smart you are but also about how you deal with you tasks and maintain a healthy lifestyle while chasing your duties.
We’d like to hear from you.
Like, what do you do to make your work-life easier and better? Got any tips? Tell us in the comments below.