With finals coming up, students are starting to realize how hard it is to stay focused. You may have noticed before, but now it’s frustrating because finals are stressful and are your last chance to get your grade where you want it.
Pinterest not only gives ideas on how to study better, but how to maintain your productivity. Here are a couple of ways to keep focused while studying for stressful finals.
1. Use a timer
First, set a timer for the time you want to study. Do not make this shorter than 20 minutes and no longer than an hour. This not only forces you to stay focused during that time, but it also allows for a break afterward.
Put the timer out of sight, so you do not watch the clock and wait for it to end. Set the timer on your phone (make sure it is on a loud alarm setting) and put it in another room. This takes your phone out of the equation and gives you nothing to distract you from studying.
2. Stay away from friend study groups
Many want to study in groups, which can work for some, but when it is your three best friends studying different topics all at once nothing gets accomplished.
Eventually someone will break and start talking and distracting, then the next thing you know it is three hours later and you are still looking at the first sentence of your textbook.
3. Music is your friend
Instead of studying with friends, music is now your friend. Turn on your music, put in your headphones and lose yourself in the subject you are studying.
This also has boundaries: do not listen to that one song that always gets you to sing along or lose yourself. You want a playlist that will keep you focused and not distract you even more.
Look for a playlist that is instrumental, so you are not forced to sing along to your favorites.
4. Naps are allowed
This is shocking. Naps being considered during finals and during college at all? Normally this is a joke and ends with you waking up wondering what year it is.
Naps are allowed because studying when you are tired is pointless. You do not absorb any of the information and are constantly thinking about how much you want to sleep.
This has guidelines, do not take a nap more than an hour long. For a nap, 20 minutes is ideal. Set multiple alarms to get yourself to wake up from the nap, because the longer it is the harder it is to wake up from.
5. Gum and mints
When studying, common distractions are hunger and thirst. Most of the time you aren’t even hungry, you just want a distraction away from the constant studying, frustration and stress of finals.
By having gum or mints nearby, you can have a constant distraction without taking anything away from the studying. It gives you something to do while focusing on the same subject for what feels like forever.
6. Reward yourself
This is possibly the most important part of studying. College is tiring with constant studying, so sometimes you need to take a break and allow yourself to indulge.
Whatever you consider a reward, whether it is ice cream, chocolate, exercise, partying, a movie, etc., take something that you would normally say no to, and say yes. Give yourself this yes and reward all your lengthy studying. Although after only 20 minutes of studying don’t think you deserve everything; do it to the point where you have had enough and then reward yourself.
7. Keep it small
Studying is not a “go big or go home” type of task, even though we all see it as that. This task takes time and needs attention to detail. By keeping the time short and the tasks small it allows for more to be accomplished and less distractions.
“Keep it small” means not exceeding the hour limit of studying before a break. This means not waiting until the night before to do it all. I’ll admit, finals are a time known for all-nighters, but try to keep those to a minimum by achieving small tasks leading to the result of gaining the knowledge of the subject.
8. Move around and study upside down
Finally, if you are reading a textbook or notes, walk around since you have been studying for a while and you need to keep moving. Study upside down if you want; the blood to your brain will help.