So here’s the deal. I’m supposed to be studying, but for some reason, all I want to do is write. Ha! I said “for some reason”, as if I didn’t know what that reason was. But I do. Over the years, writing has become my favorite thing to do, particularly at a time when stress is running high like now. You see, I’ve entered exam season. In case you’re not familiar with this 5th season, it’s a time when the world outside just stops existing, and all that is left is the simple act of studying.
That’s how it’s supposed to be, at least, but let’s be honest: nothing is ever the way it’s supposed to be. Thing is, the world has a way of re-appearing from time to time, and just distracting the students, who are completely helpless in front of its evil workings. What a jerk.
Ok, now, enough with the jokes. Let’s get serious, or at least try to. “The world” shouldn’t take the blame for offering small distractions. Instead, the student should not accept those distractions.
But man, is it hard! After months of being a good student, and concentrating on studying, my mind just sort of …leaps forward. Both my mind and I want summer, and the break it brings with it. It’s so close I can almost touch it!
here’s how not to study:
1. Don’t sit with your computer/laptop/Ipad/phone on top of your notes, and fool yourself into thinking that’s studying. It ain’t. Unless, of course, you need your computer/laptop/Ipad/phone for studying. But then all other windows or applications should be off, so as not to tempt you.
2. If your “breaks” are longer than your studying periods, they’re not breaks. Take it for what it is, and tell people you’re catching up with the internet, and when it bores you, you study for five minutes. Then of course, you realize reading is much more boring than staring at your laptop’s screen, so you go back to doing that.
3. Learning won’t happen while you’re singing along to whatever song you’ve just found. First of all, how on earth did you just discover a new song while studying? And secondly, either turn that music off or change it to something with no lyrics. Unless, of course, they’re going to be asking you on the exam about the words in that song. If that’s so, continue…
4. Staring at a blank wall isn’t studying either. It’s just staring at a blank wall. In fact, it’s much the same as staring at a computer screen, without the strain on the eye.
5. Complaining about all the studying you have to do won’t get you bonus points. In fact, it might get you negative social points, because all you’re doing is pissing everyone on social media off with your “suffering”. The people who don’t have to study won’t feel your pain, and the ones that do have to study, are probably studying. Note that this act does not involve social media whatsoever, so the only group of people who could possibly understand what you’re going through won’t read your updates.
What You Should Do Instead
I have, however, found a method of studying that doesn’t make me want to throw everything in the garbage and run away. Well, it does still involve some self control, but that’s not all.
1. Take short breaks every 20 to 30 minutes. Did you see what I did there? I said “short” breaks, which by definition don’t exceed 10 minutes in length. This way, your brain won’t get exhausted with all the info it has to absorb.
2. Think of how you can apply the knowledge you’re learning in real life situations. This will motivate you to study, and it might just make it…dare I say?…fun!
3.Turn that damn computer off. And any other device that might be tempting you. Seriously, do it.
4. Don’t eat like it’s not your own body that will suffer the consequences. Your brain needs healthy food to work properly. Help it.
5. De-stress. Exams are stressful, but you shouldn’t let yourself be constantly stressed. Do something that calms you down. As you might have figured by now, writing is how I relax. Also drinking a cup of tea seems to help. As for you, find whatever it is that calms you down, and do it.
Now you know what doesn’t work, so you won’t have any excuse to continue doing it. Although something tells me you don’t really need any excuses. Well, if you’re feeling adventurous, try doing the five things I recommended, and you might just be surprised with the results 🙂
Have fun studying!