7 tips for starting a focused study session
We know the feeling. You know you’ll eventually have to study, and you’ll start in a minute, yes, you will… Except you don’t get past opening your notebook or just glancing at a verb. Why is it so difficult to start focusing on studying?
Here are some tips on how to create a quiet, distraction-free “learning cocoon.”
- Set up all of your documents, pens, beverages, and just about everything else you’ll need to study. You shouldn’t have to leave your studying space for anything after you’ve begun.
- Have a word with your family, roommates, dog whoever you reckon could be a distraction. Communicate respectfully that it’s study hours and that you’d love some tranquility and very few distractions.
- Empty your inbox. If you have messages that demand your time, put them on a to-do checklist so you don’t neglect to deal with them afterward. The science is emphatic: juggling tasks does not work!
- Disable your device’s notification and then put it on mute to avoid it beeping and interrupting you. Keep it elsewhere if possible.
- Sign out of any applications and social platforms that may send you annoying alerts if you’re studying from a device.
- Prepare physically and mentally for studying. Refill up your water glass, pour a cup of coffee or tea, and get a good night’s sleep the night before.
- Do any important tasks of the day – like paying a bill or walking your dog before your specified study period, so they don’t fill up your precious brain space.
You don’t have to do all of these to set up your concentration bubble, but if you’re overstimulated and have a penchant to postpone studying, emptying your metaphorical plate could help you stay focused effectively.
What about music and all those studying playlists I’ve made?
- Music could help you to focus, but it could also hinder you from retaining what you’re studying.
- A common finding is that when you’re focusing on memorizing or knowledge-based learning, the noisier and more complex a soundtrack is, the more intellectual capacity it strips away from the crucial information. If you need sound to study, resort to calm, monotonous tunes or sounds, such as white noise or Lo-fi.
Just keep in mind that each student is unique. Your goal is to discover how to boost your learning skills in a technique that is most effective for yourself.
Last but not least! Do not study with your ears only: read aloud every sentence, and even re-read it some more times, faster and faster.