7 Great Tips to Learn How to Focus on Homework without Getting Distracted
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Staying focused, especially on something as dull as homework, is rarely easy. There’s so many factors constantly fighting for our attention that even staying focused on an engaging task can be difficult!
Whether it’s the lure of social media or the thought of enjoying the sunshine with our friends, it can often feel as though we have no power when it comes to what our minds choose to focus on.
Focusing properly requires both the right mental attitude and the right environment, but even the very best procrastinators can develop a productive study routine.
Dedicate a Few Minutes to Change
Many students find that getting home and putting on comfortable clothing can help them to focus, as this can help separate the school day from the evening.
It’s also important to allow yourself a break before you get started. You may find a small amount of physical activity or 30 minutes spent doing something completely unrelated to school can give you a little boost of energy and motivation before you start your homework.
Incorporating some ‘fun’ into your after-school study routine can help make the ordeal a little less painful!
Identify the Distractions in your Surroundings
Unless you do your homework in an empty room, it’s likely your home is chockablock full of distractions!
Whether it’s the buzz of the TV, the pop-up notifications on your phone, or the whir of the refrigerator daring you to get another snack, escaping distractions isn’t easy.
Identifying the distractions around you can help you to beat them, as often we don’t even realise that we are being distracted. Once you’ve identified what you find most distracting, remove it from your study space.
Whether you’re tackling math homework or struggling to write an essay, removing your primary distractions will help hugely.
Limit the Use of Technology to Find Focus
It goes without saying that electronic devices are one of the biggest distractions.
While Netflix, Instagram and Deliveroo can bring value to our lives (especially on rainy days!), they are not quite so helpful when you’re trying to work.
It’s best to limit the use of technology when you’re trying to focus. Put your smartphone on silent and tuck it away somewhere so that you’re not tempted to look at it.
If you really can’t do without it, tell yourself that once you’ve completed your first task, you’ll allow yourself 5 minutes to reply to any important messages.
Create an Environment that Breeds Creativity and Productivity
The right environment is key. A busy room with siblings playing video games or the TV turned up is only going to distract you.
Your work environment should be quiet, organised and spacious. Let as much natural light in as possible and clear your desk so that you have space to work.
Some people like to listen to some background noise while they are working, be it the hum of the radio or focus music.
Others prefer complete silence. Take some time to determine which environment works for you.
It’s also important to take regular breaks. Taking 5-minute breaks between each task can help you to stay alert and fresh.
Make a Study Plan & Prioritise your Tasks
If you’ve ever had so much to do that it feels pointless even getting started, a study plan is key. Divide your homework assignments into sections, and prioritise them by due date.
A piece of math homework due in for the following morning should be completed first, while the essay due for the next week can be lower down on your to-do list.
Use a planner to write down all your assignments, as well as the date they are due. Break any large projects into smaller sections.
Avoid Heavy Meals
Eating a heavy meal before you start work can interfere with your focus. If you’re too full, you’ll start to feel drowsy and find it harder to concentrate. But being hungry can also cause your concentration to falter!
It’s important you feel satisfied and content, and lots of sugar is unlikely to help.
Snacking on nourishing food before you begin studying will help you concentrate for longer, and prevent you from getting distracted by your rumbling stomach!
Try snacking on blueberries, nuts, wholegrain bread, and ensure you drink plenty of water.
Try a Focused Based Meditation
Sometimes, try as we might, we simply can’t get into the right headspace for studying. Whether it’s due to anxiety, stress or simply boredom, a change of tack is often needed!
A focus-based meditation, like mantra, can help you clear your busy mind, prepare you for study time and helping you to concentrate for longer.
Whether you’re worrying about the future or feeling anxious about your day at school, a short meditation can help melt away your worries so that you’re better able to focus on the task in front of you.
Organise your Study Notes
A clear desk and well-organised notes is immensely satisfying, and it’s especially important to be organised if you’re preparing for tests and exams.
You’ll be able to access the notes you need faster, without wasting precious revision time looking for things!
Using folders, highlighters and calendars can help you to stay organised when your homework starts to get on top of you.
Group your notes together by subject, then by topic. Many students find colour-coding their notes can help with organisation.
- Staying focused can be exceedingly difficult, especially with so many distractions surrounding us at any given moment.
- It’s important to divide up the school day and your evening. Change out of your school uniform, and allow yourself a 30 minute break before you sit down to tackle your homework.
- To start, identify any distractions (such as your smartphone!) and remove them from your desk.
- Allow plenty of natural light into the room, and try to stay away from noisy and distracting siblings!
- Make a study plan and prioritise what you’re going to do first. Allow yourself a short break once you’ve completed each task.
- Snack on nourishing, healthy food such as blueberries, nuts and wholegrain bread.
- A focus-based meditation can help you to clear your mind and get into the right mindset.
- Staying organised is key; group your notes into each subject, and then each topic.