Are you one of those students that has a lot of trouble trying to study? Are you always nodding off when you are trying to read about a subject matter that isn’t particularly interesting? Or perhaps you get very easily distracted when you are supposed to be focused? All these problems could go away if you just created a good office/study space that you can go to. The reality is that if you are willing to put in the work then creating the study space of your dreams where you can do work and get things done is very, very possible!
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Section One: What Should You Put in Your Study Space?
Desk and Chair:
The fundamentals of any good study space is to get a solid table and chair. You want to make sure that you are going to get something that will allow you to be comfortable, but at the same time allow you to focus on the work you need to do. The last thing you want is to get a really comfy chair only to realize that it causes you to go to sleep the moment you sit in it. As a lot of you are used to sitting on your bed to study but believe me it’s not a good idea. A bed makes you lethargic and feel like you want to sleep, so you definitely want to get yourself a good chair and desk as it motivates you to do the work you need to do.
You are going to want to get a desk that allows you to rest your arms on it with ease. The best way to make sure that the desk you get works well for you is to simply test out one desk after the other until you find the perfect one for you.
The same advice applies when you are looking for the perfect chair for your new study space. The only way to really find the chair that will suit you is to actually test out one chair after the other until you find the right chair for you… it’s simple but not easy, so get to work!
Lighting For Your Study Space:
If you really and truly want to be productive in your new study space then you are going to have to make sure that you have proper lighting in your new space. If your study space doesn’t have adequate lighting then you are just going to feel lethargic when you are working, which is definitely not how you want to feel when you have an exam that you are trying to study for! A great investment that doesn’t cost too much is to get yourself a good quality desk lamp which will give you all the light you need to keep you focused!
Of course, if you are able to have your study space in an area that is full of natural light then that’s awesome, however, be careful of putting your new desk in front of the window because you may very well find yourself being constantly distracted. To overcome this you could either not put your desk in front of a window, therefore still benefiting from all the natural light or put some blinds where you get the light but your view is pretty much blocked.
Equip Your New Office/Study Space:
You really don’t want to be one of those unorganized students that is constantly looking for their pens and pencils because that will get you nowhere! Rather you want to get all the tools and equipment that you are going to need for your studies and keep them on your desk at all times so you can get to them when you need within seconds.
Keep all the standard things you need like good quality pens, pencils, notepads, highlighters, etc and either put them in a cup or in one of the desk drawers.
If you happen to study subjects where you need a dictionary or a calculator then you are also going to want to keep these tools on your desk too. Sure these days you can download apps on your phone for both of these things but believe me you want to keep the phone as far away from you as possible when you are studying because you’ll just be inviting distraction.
Get Up and Get Organized:
You can’t make any more excuses, you have to get yourself organized if you are going to be a successful student. Use all the drawers in your desk to keep all your notes (and whatever else) organized. If you don’t have draws in your desk then simply buy some organizing boxes from your local stationery store and organize everything neatly in there.
All the notes that you take for each of your different classes should be organized appropriately in different folders, so you know where everything is at all times. This way you can get to all your notes within seconds when you need them, instead of rushing around in a panic.
You also have the option of buying whiteboards and cork boards that you can use to stick up notices and other things that you need to keep track of.
Don’t Forget to Organize Your Computer Files:
It’s great that you keep all your physical files and folders organized but it’s equally important that you keep your digital files all organized. Do you really want to be one of those people that has written an incredible essay on your computer only to find out that you can’t seem to find it? Or perhaps you had taken some really good class notes for a particular class and now that you need them to prepare for a test you can’t find them at all. As you did with your physical files you are going to want to create individual folders for each subject that you are studying to keep all your files related to each subject organized.
Don’t forget to make sure that you name all the files and folders appropriately so you can actually find what you are looking for!
Invest in a Clock:
Whether or not you should get a clock depends on the type of person you are. If a clock will help push you to study as much as you can then it’s great, however, if you are the kind of person that will just end up getting distracted and just keep watching the clock, counting the minutes before you are planning to stop then it’s probably a bad idea.
If you do decide to get yourself a clock then you can use it to actually time yourself to study for a certain period of time before you take a break. For example, you could say you will study your notes for 20 minutes without distraction, and once the 20 minutes are up you can get up to take a short break before returning to do another 20 minutes study session.
Section Two: Remove All Distractions
Declutter Your Desk:
To keep yourself organized and your mind clear you are going to have to make sure that your new study space is as clutter-free as possible because let’s be honest you are never going to be able to study with focus if where you are trying to study is full of distractions. Another benefit, of course, is that you won’t waste any time trying to find what you need if everything on your desk is organized… you can simply grab what you need right away and then get to work.
A great way to get everything organized without feeling overwhelmed is to just do a little bit of tidying up during your short breaks between study sessions. This way you can study and get everything clean and organized and you won’t feel a thing!
Your desk should only really have what you need on it. This will help to eliminate all distractions and allow you to focus completely on what you need to do at the moment.
Remove the Phone:
The reality is that it is going to be hard for many of you to leave your phone in another room while you are studying… it’s just the world we happen to live in. While there are of course many incredible benefits to using the smartphone, it is also one major cause of distraction! So this means you are going to have to exert some will power and make sure that when it’s time to study that your phone is nowhere near you, preferably in a different room altogether.
In fact you are going to really want to turn your phone off completely because you don’t want to be in a situation where you are focused on your studies and your phone starts ringing because it will distract you and no matter how strong your willpower, the likelihood is that you are going to end up getting up and checking your phone.
Get into the Zone:
First of all, you need to figure out what kind of person you are. Are you the type of person that gets distracted by any kind of noise? Then perhaps the best environment for you to study in would be in complete silence. If however, you like a little background noise then you could get yourself a pair of noise-canceling headphones and put on some background music such as the sound of a coffee shop which will allow you to just get into the zone and block out the rest of the world.
Don’t forget that there is absolutely no such thing as multitasking. No matter how much you wish you could do it, there is just no way you can scan your Instagram feed, watch your favorite movie and complete your latest school assignment, there just isn’t. You are just deluding yourself. To really get results and to actually get things done you are going to want to dedicate your time to doing one thing at a time. So this means that when you are studying you should be focused on your studies and when you are relaxing then you should focus on relaxing.
Use Your Study Space Only For Studying:
Whatever space you have dedicated for studying should be kept for studying. The reason for this is that you want to mentally associate the place you are studying with studying so that when you sit down you automatically get into the zone and are able to focus much faster. If you do other things in the same place such as eating, drinking, socializing, etc then you are just going to end up getting distracted every time you sit down to study.
It doesn’t matter how small the space you have is to work in, just make sure that it is completely dedicated to studying and nothing else. This single strategy will help you leaps and bounds when it comes to being able to focus with ease on the things that you need to do.
If having your own dedicated study space really isn’t an option then the second best option is to just clean up whatever space you are going to use, so that it is free from all distractions. This way you can temporarily be able to focus on the task at hand.
Don’t Snack While Studying:
Studying is a really tough thing to do, especially mentally and so it can be tempting to have snacks to keep you going but it’s better not to because not only is it distracting but it’s also tempting to end up snacking on junk food which is not good for you at all. If you absolutely have to snack then it’s best to snack on healthy things such as fruit.
You are also going to want to completely avoid sugary drinks and caffeine because it will only lead to ups and downs in your energy levels which isn’t great when you are trying to stay focused while studying!
The best time for a snack is when you are taking a break from your studies. It can work as a little reward for all the hard work you’ve done.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that you should starve yourself because that would be equally unproductive. You need to make sure that you are fueling the body with all the nutrition that it needs. This way you will have the energy to do all the studying you need to get those top grades in class!
So there you have it, all the steps you need to implement to create an office/study space that will help you study with complete focus and get all the most important things you need to get done, completed!
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