Have you ever postponed your study plans long enough to freak out just before the day of the examination? Well, you are not the only one to have experienced that tension. It is not surprising to have one of those days when you sat down with a book in your hands without having any clue about what you are reading because in your mind you are absolutely somewhere else. You might have mindlessly gawked at the letters in the book, trying to figure out things but ending up getting nowhere. It is an arbitrary choice to study just before the examination as many of us find ourselves in the endless loop of stress and pressure prior to our scheduled examination dates. The phase of boredom that arises from the feeling of being shackled and tormented by the vast syllabus in the course often leads one to have achieved no progress in studies at all. In order to achieve our goals in life, it is crucial that we remain self-motivated and target-oriented from the very beginning. Here are some helpful ideas on how to keep yourself inspired and motivated to study.
1. Isolate yourself-
It is very important to find your personal space. Before you start studying it is mandatory to find a quiet place where there are zero distractions. If you can’t concentrate on what you are studying then you won’t be able to delve deep into the subject and gather knowledge fully. You will have to put in more efforts to try to understand a topic if you are in a chaotic environment. Therefore, it is recommended to study at a noiseless ambiance without any interruptions. This could be your own room, a library, a cafe, a bench at a park or anywhere away from the cacophony of the street hassles. However, studying at a confined location in your own room, at your own study table, has the perks of its own. You feel more yourself as you are familiar with the place you are in, which enhances your concentration level and allows you to focus on your task.
2. Switch off your mobile, laptop and television –
In today’s world of telecommunication and social obligations, keeping yourself aloof can be a challenging job. But in case you don’t want to compromise the quality of your study time, turn off your mobile, TV, laptop or anything that reminds you that there is a different world outside where you have friends and family. You goal is to stay focused and avoid diverting to trivial activities like gossip or games. Logout from all social media accounts so that you don’t have to scroll through your newsfeed feeling depressed about the fact that others are having fun while you are stuck at home studying. If you are using the internet to study then make sure that you don’t find yourself checking your Facebook notifications or playing Clash of Clans. Don’t deviate from your studies and start watching videos on YouTube.
3. Keep water and light snacks –
It is only natural to feel exhausted after devoting your full energy to understand a concept or read a theory or solve a mathematical problem. To avoid feeling restless while studying, it is a good idea to keep yourself hydrated and fed. You can grab some protein bars, fruits or cookies along with a cup of coffee to keep yourself from feeling sleepy and tired. But make sure that this doesn’t become the central point. You should not be more focused on deciding “what to eat next” while your books are taking a good nap by your side. Don’t overeat while you study and always keep a bottle of water by your side. You should wear comfortable clothes so that you don’t have to get up every time you feel uneasy and unsettled. When your body is at peace, you mind is at peace. And when your mind is at peace, you can devote all your concentration and attention to whatever task you have undertaken.
4. Make sure you have everything you need-
It is the foremost priority to arrange your things before you get started. Keep everything you need on your study desk and make sure that you don’t have to leave every five minutes to get something. You must make it a key point to check if you have your books, notebooks, pens, pencils and other items needed to study before you actually sit down to study. It doesn’t hurt to stay organized. In the same time, do not keep unnecessary items on your desk. It just makes your desk look clumsy.
5. Meditate for a few minutes before you start-
As they say, “The goal of meditation isn’t to control your thoughts, it’s to stop letting them control you”. Meditation helps you ease your mind and start fresh. Meditation improves concentration and helps in reducing stress. Before you start studying, it is important to get yourself together. You can do a couple of exercises to increase your concentration too. For starters, you can draw a point on the wall, sit still on a chair with your back straight and concentrate on the point for about fifteen minutes. Do not move or talk. Just sit comfortably and observe. These exercises help you to stay focused throughout the duration of your study and enable you to develop and improve your concentration skills.
6. Take breaks in between –
Studying for a long duration at a stretch can be a tiring and dull job. Taking breaks in between speeds up the process of learning as now you can look forward to finishing a chapter before you can reward yourself with a break. Taking frequent breaks should be used as an incentive and not as a hindrance. If you take a break every time you read a sentence then that’s not going to do you any good. Make sure that you study for a decent time period and take a break only when you actually need it. Taking breaks also allows you to revise the chapters in your mind in a more casual and relaxed manner. You can use the Pomodoro technique for more productive outcomes in the learning process. You can study for 25 minutes and then take a short break of 5 minutes. In this manner you will feel refreshed before you start a new chapter.
7. Make a schedule and stick to it-
It is natural to freak out trying to figure out where to start from, considering the extensive syllabus of the course. And this is where a study plan comes to the rescue. Now sticking to a study schedule is more difficult than actually making one for on most occasions they end up mocking our inability to remain determined. But if we consider the positive aspect of making a schedule we are most likely to observe that ticking the daily schedule off is actually fun and inspiring. When you complete a given assignment in correspondence with your schedule, it boosts your confidence. If you want to keep pace with your time table then it is absolutely compulsory to set realistic goals. Don’t stress yourself too much by trying to complete ten chapters in a single day. Instead try to complete two chapters every day. Allot proper time to your tasks every day and set a target for the day. Once you are able to accomplish your goal for the day, reward yourself with something or the other, maybe a club sandwich or a long drive or some music.
8. Be positive –
It can be a little overwhelming at times to cope up with the study pressure that comes from the anxiety of scoring good marks in the approaching exams and the compulsion to learn a lot in a short span of time. During those times when you feel completely devastated and distressed and your mind tells you to give up, always try to remain optimistic. Always remember that “Today’s pain is tomorrow’s gain” and keep up the hard work. We all, as students, have faced one of those dilemmas in our lives when we couldn’t decide whether to open the book and study or watch the latest Game of Thrones episode. Try to keep any evil thought out of your mind and believe in yourself. Don’t lose hope on yourself irrespective of how terrified you are and you will definitely succeed.
9. Do not procrastinate –
“I will start studying from tomorrow” is a sentence that every student has uttered and heard since time immemorial. Make a study plan and stick to it. Don’t delay till you have no option left but to study. Procrastination is the ultimate enemy of every student. We all feel the urge to spend the final day of freedom, before starting our preparations, lavishly. And we become so absorbed in the celebration of it that we fail to discontinue the fun times and actually start studying. And before we know, it all comes down to – “I won’t study today because I am going to have Thai food for dinner”, “I won’t study today because the latest episode of Stranger Things is up”, “I won’t study today because it’s cold outside”. Stalling your tasks will only help you in retrospection to regret the hours you wasted. So, pick your things up, be determined and start off and once you have started, don’t look back. Sometimes starting a job can be the most intimidating and daunting task but once you are on it, you are good to go. Break your course down to parts and complete each part in a day. This is a more systematic approach to studies that is definitely going to help you to achieve your long term goals.
10. Visualize your long term goals –
Once you are sure about what you want to do in future, it becomes more important for you to remain dedicated in the present. Think about how passionate you are to be established and independent and focus all that emotions into your studies. Watching motivational videos and reading inspiring biographies also help to nurture and cultivate the sense of resolution in an individual.