So, you woke up today and finally felt ready to get some work done. You’re now sitting in front of a somewhat terrifying blank notebook, your textbook, and your computer. Actually, you’ve been sitting there for the last 30 (50?) minutes, during which you discovered how surprisingly interesting a blank wall can be. And then comes the sudden realization that you just can’t help but check Instagram. Whether your biggest challenge is social media, procrastination, or just thinking about puppies, I’m here to help you stay focused while studying.
1. Put your phone as far away from you as possible
Ok, you may get separation anxiety if you go anywhere without your phone. But, let’s face it, you can’t keep looking for notifications every 5 minutes. Many of the apps we use were just intended to steal away as much of our time as possible. And I know they feel rewarding, but notifications are overloading your brain.
So, hide your phone and get it out of your mind. Leave it charging in another room and allow yourself to control where your attention goes. Stay focused and concentrate on your textbook. Don’t worry, Twitter will tell you what you missed.
2. Eat Well to Stay Attentive
I know you’re not going to believe me, but carbs are your friends. They are your main source of energy. Having a snack or two with whole grains or some fruit may be a good idea to improve concentration. Still, you don’t want to burn and crush, so avoid simple, refined sugars. And then, nothing boosts your alertness like caffeine. Just don’t overindulge.
3. Reward Yourself
There are several ways you can reward yourself while studying. Your brain is stupid, and right now you have the unique opportunity of being both Pavlov and his dogs. Associate studying with eating pizza afterward or – my favorite – napping. There are also rewarding apps. I found myself surprisingly invested in keeping a few trees alive in Forest, which also helps with keeping your phone out of sight. Concentrating and saving the planet by planting real trees at the same time. Couldn’t get any better.
4. Break Time
I know you’ve resorted to binge studying out of desperation. Just don’t do it. There is now even a Harvard Study proving that after a few hours your concentration drops to just about zero. You need to make your study routine consistent and spaced out.
5. Listen to Study Music
If you’ve ever dragged the volume slider on your iPhone all the way up to feel more energic, you know how music can make you feel better. Nowadays, there is alpha waves music specifically designed to concentrate and improve your study performance. Enjoy a sample below. And if you want to know more good reasons to listen to study music, check out this post.