University life is no mean feat, particularly this year with the added obstacles of online learning and finding new ways to socialise. However as with many areas of life, there are ways to make sure this challenge can work to your advantage! By creating a designated productive study space, you can improve concentration, productivity and the confidence to do your best work. There are plenty of ways to make sure this mentality sticks.
Read on for some tips on creating a workspace that will be effective for you during study sessions.
Naturally, what puts (and keeps) you in a studious mood will differ from person to person, but the general rule of thumb for an optimal study space is to remove anything that could encourage the mind to wander from the subject at hand. This includes:
-Additional screens such as your phone, tablet and any games consoles.
-Avoid having multiple tabs open, especially if they aren’t relatable to the current topic.
-Resist the urge to check the news, and social media. Studying is a great way to take a bit of down-time from the constant flow of information we can find ourselves lost in.
-Snacks, drinks, long preparation meals.
There’ll be exceptions to the above of course, ie. if you’re having to work from multiple screens or you need your phone as a calculator. Ultimately though, your study space should be able to maximise the attention you can devote to studying, while minimising the effort required. Removing distractions such as electronic devices is the greatest way to improve focus and work rate.
Find your balance of comfort vs relaxation
Comfort is important, but you don’t want to be so relaxed you’re unable to focus, or stay awake. Resorting to a traditional classroom setting is a great way to maintain a productive mindset, opting for a comfortable chair and spreading out over desk space is a classic study set-up. Laying back with your laptop in bed might seem like an impressive way to meet the demands of an already sporadic year, but it might wreak havoc with your motivation levels and productivity mood.
Be sure to also consider the atmosphere of the space, stabilised room temperature, good lighting and minimal to no noise distractions are ways to ensure attention span remains on the studies! The smallest of practical details can add to the functionality of the space too. Don’t forget to kit your area out with extension cables, have wall space nearby for ease of note displaying, and the layout of your study items.
Whether it’s your first taste of freedom, or your next new home, your private study space should still reflect you and your personal tastes. Little aesthetic touches can go a long way in making a space feel familiar and comforting, and therefore a space you’ll have no worries in spending hours on end in. From photos of loved ones, to well-loved instruments, or the extra comfort of rugs and cushions. Having these little details nearby can make a huge difference in overcoming restlessness during long periods of concentration. Although again, ensure these items don’t interfere with productivity and only add to your relaxed state of mind.
However and wherever you decide to study, make sure it’s an environment that can enhance your productivity and a spot where you can get the best out of yourself and your work style. Retaining information can be an effort in itself so these small pointers may prove quite effective!