School is back in session! As such, you might be wondering how you can enhance your study space to help you perform at your highest potential. There are several quick changes you can make to improve your study space right at home — here’s what you can do:
1. Cut out distractions
What tends to distract you when you are trying to buckle down and study? Is it a nearby poster with bright colors that catches your eye, a beanbag chair that is a bit too relaxing, or a mechanical pencil you constantly are playing with? Any distracting objects or features of your study space should be eliminated. In theory, getting rid of these distractions should be relatively easy. Excessive light can be reduced with curtains and furniture can be rearranged. With some creativity, mostly everything about your study space is adjustable.
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2. Clear the clutter
Your study space should only contain the things you need to study — nothing more, nothing less. When you keep more than you need in your study space, it can lead to stress and distractions. Clean up garbage, put away extra books, and relocate picture frames, trinkets, etc., or any other objects that are not conducive to studying. Go for a minimalistic approach.
3. Adjust the lighting
Lighting can have a huge psychological impact on your study efforts. Your study space should be properly lit: not so bright that it hurts your eyes, but not so dim that you have to squint. Natural light is often better than artificial light, so take advantage if your study space has a window or skylight. If possible, open the blinds rather than flipping a light switch (you can save electricity this way, too).
4. Reduce noise
Some students enjoy studying with their headphones in or the radio on. However, some studies show that people tend to remember less of what they study when they study with too much background noise. However, there are other instances when music can be helpful to one’s concentration, perhaps when it is soft and familiar. New sounds can negatively affect concentration, however, as they will likely be distracting. All in all, this aspect of a study space depends on your personal preferences.
To customize your study space, you must get to know yourself. Think about all of the different parts of your study space: lighting, seating arrangement, organization, temperature, acoustics, etc. Now, think about how you can tailor those elements to make them create the perfect study environment for you and only you. Only you know under what conditions you learn best.
6. Ditch your phone
One surefire way to increase your study productivity is by putting your phone down for awhile. As hard as it may be, not having email, texting, and social media at your fingertips will greatly help you focus on the schoolwork at hand. At first, it may be a tough adjustment, but you are very likely to be pleased with how much you accomplish. If you are ever using your study space for group work, encourage your team members to put their phones aside as well; they just may thank you later!
Improving your study space does not have to be difficult or expensive. Follow these tips and you will have already taken the first step to higher test grades.
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