Are you having a hard time focusing and being productive while studying for exams? Studying for a test can be stressful and anxiety-inducing, especially when you’re not ready for it. This article provides you with life skills and study techniques that you can incorporate throughout your schooling. If you want to achieve that A+ grade on your exam, check out the following tips.
Have a healthy morning routine
Set an alarm (or two, if one won’t do the trick!) to wake you up early and start the day efficiently. Waking up at the same time every day will help your body get into a routine, even if waking up early isn’t easy at first.
Since breakfast is the most important meal of the day, eating “brain foods” can help your brain retain information. Brain foods are meals rich in vitamins and nutrients. It’s best to eat a fair amount of good carbs, proteins, and fats because they have the nutrients that your neurons needs to function.
Sweet, sugary snacks can occasionally be a helpful motivation, but remember not to overeat since excessive sugar can trigger a decline with your cognitive skills and self-control. Avoid taking too much caffeine as well—it might make you more anxious, rather than alert.
Get comfortable in your studying environment
Find a place where you can study comfortably for your exam. It can be your personal study area, the library, or a coffee shop near your home—as long the location helps you focus while reading your books and notes.
Studying in your bedroom is not advisable since it may make you feel tired and unmotivated. The key is to choose the best place to stimulate your thoughts. When you see your bed, something in your brain is triggered and makes you feel sleepy. A place outside of your bedroom is likely a better option.
Background music may help you focus more while studying. Pay attention to the music you’re listening to. Does it keep you focused or does it distract you? Instrumental or classical music is often a safe bet when you’re trying to multitask. You can also listen to motivational music if you want to feel especially inspired.
It’s also a good idea to have a snack and drink ready while you are reviewing your notes. This way, you won’t need to get up to look for something to eat in case you feel hungry.
Invest in a good laptop
Another excellent study exam technique is to make sure that the laptop you are using is efficient and reliable. If you are a college student, there are a lot of factors to consider before getting or upgrading your laptop:
- Usage and Specs –Consider the tasks you need a laptop for. If you are just going to use the laptop for writing assignments, streaming videos, and surfing the net, a basic laptop with regular hardware and performance is a good fit for you, plus it will be budget-friendly, too. However, if you’re the type of college student who regularly uses heavy software and applications like Adobe Premiere and AutoCAD, it’s beneficial for you to get a laptop with extra RAM, high-resolution display, and high-performance CPU types. That way, you won’t encounter any lagging or crashing issues.
- Laptop Durability – Since you’ll bemoving between classes frequently, it’s practical to get a durable laptop for long-term usage. Ultrabooks are decent in terms of durability, but buying a high-quality laptop will ensure that it will last longer. It will cost you more, but laptops that are tested to resist shock, drop, temperature, and humidity are worthwhile investments.
Stick to your own techniques
If you are thinking about trying a new memorization technique, right before an exam is not the right time to do it. It’s better to go with what has been effective for you in the past. Don’t listen to other people’s advice during last-second cramming—no matter how much they try to persuade you that there are faster and easier ways to review, it’s more likely that you know yourself best.
Switching to other study exam techniques at the last minute might also stress your brain. If that happens, you may have a mental block while reviewing or even during an exam. Study using the routine that has helped you before, since your brain is most familiar with that pattern.
Make sure that you have plenty of time to study. Establishing good study patterns is the best way to avoid cramming and be prepared.
Get yourself a standing desk converter
One more underrated technique for studying in a healthy way is by using a standing desk converter. These desks are suitable for sitting and standing positions, and allow you to work efficiently while being able to adjust your posture and move comfortably.
These sit-stand desk converters are ideal for studying since they promote a more focused position when you’re reading. Ergonomic furniture allows you to be productive while eliminating the health issues caused by moving or settling your body in an unnatural way.
You can alternate between sitting and standing to experience less back and shoulder pain. Standing is useful since it provides you good blood flow. There’s also a higher tendency for you to avoid bad posture with a standing desk converter around. Why? Bad posture is usually caused by sitting too much or being stagnant in one position.
Do a pre-test
One of the most effective ways to review for an exam is to determine the things you already know and the things you don’t know. Doing this will help you focus more on your weaknesses while still reinforcing your strengths.
You can make a questionnaire which may include topics that might appear in your actual exam. Use all the books and notebooks related to the subject you’re studying in order to create questions. Then, answer the questions without using your notes to see how much you know.
Find a study partner or study group
You are not the only one preparing for the upcoming exam. Find an individual or a group of classmates who are also determined to do well on the test, as they can help you stay on track. It is better to do this as early as possible to give you time to look for other people who can help you. However, you might want to keep your circle small and choose the people you study with wisely, because the people that you decide to study with might either help you or disappoint you in the end.
There are many distractions that you might encounter while studying, and one of them is the most famous and typical distraction: your smartphone. It’s very easy to pick up your phone while you are studying and scroll through those endless timelines on your social media apps.
If you need to use the Internet while studying, avoid opening your Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram accounts. Just quickly google what you need. After that, put your phone or laptop away from you immediately.
Another good study habit is keeping your TV turned off. Why? The next thing you know, you’ll find yourself watching your favorite show and forget that you are studying.
Your friends can also be a distraction, so it’s helpful to tell them that you need to focus on studying and will be unavailable for a set amount of time. You can also close your windows to keep away from your neighbors’ noises. Remember, focus on studying for your exam— everything else can wait.
Take time to rest
It’s never a good idea to study until late at night and wake up early the next day for your exam. The key to retaining all the information you absorbed in your mind is to get enough sleep. Don’t sacrifice sleep just so you can study more as this might just waste all of your efforts.
If you’re tired during the day, take a 15-20 minute nap to boost your energy. It can help you focus more, enhance your performance, and improve your mood. But avoid taking long naps since this may cause you to feel disoriented.
Get ready for exam day
Prepare everything that you will need on the day of your exam. Set out the clothes you plan to wear and keep your bag beside your bed with everything required for the exam inside. You can even take a shower the night before to save time in the morning.
Wake up early on the day of your exam. Eat a hearty breakfast to help you maintain alertness and boost your brain. Don’t think too hard about everything you’ve learned and studied in preparation for the exam. You’re ready. Best of luck!