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5 Back to School Study Tips to Help You Focus

Study Tips

Autumn is here, which means back-to-school. Have you been able to stay focused, or is your brain still in holiday-mode? Here are 5 tips to help! 

Autumn is well and truly here, which means it´s time we put on our warmer jackets and dig out our umbrellas. Hot cocoa, warm fireplaces, and multi-coloured leaves falling from trees all make autumn one of the most beautiful and cosiest times of the year. 

Autumn also means back-to-school. So, how are your studies going? Have you been able to stay focused, or is your brain still in holiday-mode? 

Here are five tips to help you focus and study more productively:

Get into the Zone?

One of the best aids to help you get into the “study zone” is music. You can find dozens of great study playlists on YouTube and Spotify which vary in style, tempo, and mood, all designed to help you concentrate. Simple search “study music” and see what works best for you.

Instrumental film scores, movie soundtracks, new age music, classical music, and ambient music tend to work best for studying. We recommend avoiding “party anthems”, Top 40, and most vocal-driven music as lyrical content can cause our attention to stray. 

You could try listening to 'white noise'. A consistent, electronically produced drone or other “wall of sound” such as the sound of rain.  White noise is another excellent sound source which can assist in “blocking out” distractions.

Set the Stage

“Setting the stage” by going through a process of pre-study “rituals" can be a helpful way to "shift gears" and send a message to your brain you´re about to study.

Setting the stage can involve making sure your workplace is neat and tidy and you have all study materials you need. It can also mean ensuring you have the right lighting, which for some might mean opening the blinds to let sunlight in.  For others, it may mean closing the blinds and lighting some candles. 

Be sure to also have your snacks, water, and tea or coffee in reach. Lastly, burning some incense or essential oils can be another powerful aid to mentally prepare for studying.

Some people find being around others helps them focus. Some people find there are too many distractions at home and find it difficult to switch their home from “study hall” to “bedroom”. Studying at a café or library can be great. There are minimal distractions… and you won´t be tempted to procrastinate and tidy your surroundings!

Switch Off All Distractions

That´s right. It´s time to log off Facebook, switch off all notifications, alerts, and sounds on your phone including vibrate. 

Eliminating all possible distractions minimises the chance of your attention being pulled in different directions. It's time to kick procrastination in the butt!

If you live with other people, let them know that you need privacy for ´x´ number of hours while you are studying.

Listen to Your Internal Clock

It´s important to know when in the day, you work best. Are you a morning person, or do you have the most of your energy in the evening? 

What time do you sleep and wake? Listen to your body clock to decide when the best time to study is for you.

Adopt a Learning Mindset

Last but not least, it´s vital that as you prepare to study, you go in with a learning mindset. This means no negative self-talk allowed.

It´s OK to find a particular module challenging - it´s part of learning and developing. Focus your attention on recognising and appreciating your development, instead of striving for perfection. Remember, you´re here to learn. After all, if you already knew everything, you wouldn´t be at school studying. So, cut yourself some slack. Be patient and understand that you are making progress whether it is in big or small steps. 

Good luck! And if you need any help getting back on track after your summer holidays or with your back-to-school expenses, visit Ferratum – we´d be happy to help!

Warning: Late repayment can cause you serious money problems. For help, go to moneyadviceservice.org.uk. Representative example: APR 1270% if borrowing £400 for 4 months. Interest rate: 292% p.a. (fixed). Total amount repayable: £665.48 by four instalments of £166.37. Maximum representative APR: 1604% if full loan repaid after 7 days.