Have you ever decided to do some homework or revision and 3 hours later you still haven’t started? Or have you got distracted in class because a friend has sent you some dank memes? I know I have! It wasn’t until I decided to take control of my studies and be smarter on how I spent valuable time that I overcame my procrastination habits (mostly!). These seven tips will help you revise smarter and might help you get a better grade!
Get these apps!
How many times do you check Facebook or Instagram when you’re supposed to be revising or in class? I bet it’s loads! All those seconds add up and distract you from learning. Download Forest: Stay Focused and watch your electronic ‘forest’ grow the longer you lock your phone, the bigger your forest! You can save the environment. Over 300,000 trees have been planted by Forest just from people using this app!
Create a study space
Being interrupted by a sibling or parent is the worst when you have an important deadline or exam coming up. Find where you are most productive – is it in the library, or your bedroom, or maybe at the kitchen table? Ask the people in your house to give you some space and take frequent breaks. Also, consider what time of day you decide to study: are you more productive first thing in the morning or later in the day?
Get over the fear of failure
This one was a big issue for me personally – I would never start a project or essay because I wanted to ‘find the right time.’ It always ends up being the night before it’s due and a big rushed mess with tons of added stress. If you have a long deadline split the task up and give yourself goals with smaller deadlines. Don’t be afraid of getting things wrong, the sooner you start the sooner you can get your work checked by a teacher or tutor and the longer you’ll have to improve it.
Eat the toad (do the most unpleasant first)
You are more likely to avoid a difficult task and put it off with smaller, easier tasks. For example, you could have an important essay to write. But instead of getting a head start on it you do other work such as watching a video for class and making notes. Putting off a task doesn’t make it go away so do the hardest one first and then the rest will seem a lot easier.
Study in groups – work with your friends.
Many hands make light work and a problem shared is a problem halved. Your peers and friends are all in the same position as you, use your network to your advantage and set up a study group chat to help one another. You could also consider creating a shared document using Google Docs or Microsoft Word, make notes and revise together with all of your group contributing to one large document or file collaboratively.
Prioritise and consider a time table (write it down).
Do you have a billion and one things to get done? Don’t know where to start? We’ve all been there. Writing everything down that needs to get done and when it needs to be done will help. Put the hardest ones first and the ones with the shortest deadline. Then look at how much free time you actually have, it’s probably more than you think! Aim to cross off the things at the top of your list and make yourself accountable by keeping a study diary of how much work you actually do.
Have you had a really busy day/week/month? Feel overwhelmed? Of course you do! You need to remember you’re only human and it’s alright to slow down. Take an hour, or a day, or a week for yourself. Make plans with friends or stay in bed all day! Just do something that you enjoy and don’t ever feel guilty for it because you’re here enjoy life, not spend all of it behind a desk!