But we have great news. You don’t need to be in a Buddhist monastery to create a study routine that really works. Just look around, rethink some habits and that’s it! We gain more productivity in studies in a natural way, according to what works for our life.
So, let’s go there?
10 Secrets to Increasing Study Productivity
You might notice that each of these productivity hacks, even according to neuroscience, depends on your willpower. The moral of the story: tip number zero is to make an effort. Follow up!
1. Organize your study space
According to neuroscience, our brain is sensitive to the clutter around us. In other words, if your table is in chaos, you can study for 10 hours and not have any results.
To ensure productivity in your studies, before starting, or the day before, set aside a few minutes and keep everything organized. You can do even better. Set aside the books, handouts, summaries and notebooks that will be needed. That way, there will be no stalling. Just sit down and study.
2. Have a schedule
It’s normal, when we start, to want to embrace the world and study all the subjects in one day. But that is humanly impossible. For this reason, creating a study schedule is more than necessary, it is vital!
On the same day, you can alternate subjects with which you have more and less affinity, to create a kind of compensation law: “ah, I’m going to study Quantum Physics, which is difficult, but then comes Mathematics, which is more relaxed”. That way, on days of more complex topics, you won’t be without motivation, because, well, well, that day also has exercises that you enjoy!
3. Do one thing at a time
When exam week or workweek is tight, are you doing several things at the same time? Here is an error, and neuroscience proves it. Nobody (that’s right, absolutely nobody) is good at doing more than one thing at the same time, not even men. nor women.
This overloads our cognitive resources and you fail to learn or do it well. So focus on one activity at a time so you don’t get confused and waste time. Yes, because you will have to go back to this activity sooner or later.
4. Understand your best time to study
Do you know when you see people who love to wake up at 5 am and settle their lives before 10 am? It’s no use trying to copy if your concentration is stronger after lunch or even at night. Each of us knows how it works best.
So look at yourself, figure out your best times and go. You don’t need to be like everyone else, you just need self-knowledge. Also understand that your productivity in your studies will not always be high at that time, and it’s okay to study sooner or later. We are not a robot that only needs to recharge the battery to function, right?
5. Take off your pyjamas for more productivity in your studies
When we wear pyjamas, it’s as if we were sending a message to our brain: “it’s time to rest”, “relax there” and things like that. In other words, keeping your pyjamas on to study will be like pushing the envelope.
So it’s simple. Get out of your pyjamas, change into comfortable clothes and wash your face. You’ve already sent a message to your brain that it’s time to get out of the laziness mode and stick to your studies.
6. Don’t totally isolate yourself when studying
Sometimes, we think that living on a desert island or on a distant planet would be the best scheme to have more productivity in studies, right? After all, living with a father, son, siblings, parrot and dog makes concentration difficult. But it’s not quite there — we need a little company, after all, human beings are social beings.
Take advantage of the fact that you don’t live alone, if that’s the case, to chat a little with the people at home during breaks proposed by yourself, or arrange a few moments to study in a group, even remotely. A group on WhatsApp can bring a lot of insight, you know?
7. Take short breaks to rest
You won’t be able to study from 8 am to 12 pm without breaks. Nobody has that much concentration. So, understand what works for you. Study for an hour and stop for 10 minutes? Study 30 minutes and stop 5? Go on with a study plan that really makes you more focused. There’s only one rule here: if it works for you, it’s in effect!
8. Create a routine
As much as we can’t always follow the routine, it’s nice to establish one. For example, studying early in the morning, working and returning to school at night. So, even if there are unforeseen circumstances, you can find loopholes and adapt.
9. Stretch from time to time
Our bodies get tired of being in the same position for hours and hours at a time, no matter if we are sitting or standing. So if you’ve been studying for two hours, get up a little, do some stretches, and go back to studying.
This stretch helps oxygenate your brain and keeps you productive when studying.
10. Give yourself some compensation
Our brains also work better when we (self) reward ourselves. And it doesn’t have to be an expensive prize, ok? These are simple things like: did you complete a difficult part of the studies? Take a break to play with your pet or listen to music. You will see how you will come back with more motivation.
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All these productivity tips in studies will help you to have more focus and quality during these times, as well as gain some free time. Even because life is not just about studying, right? We need a few moments of tranquillity.