Studying should be a time of concentrated focus, but today’s society provides vastly more distractions than ever before. There are myriad distractions to avoid while studying, and the astute student will be cognizant of these distractions, and limit or eliminate them to the best of his or her ability.
Finding the proper location to complete your studying is essential for the exercise to be a success. If the location of your studying is not free from distraction, your focus will be broken, which can be an extreme detriment to your success. Procrastination may also arise more readily when distractions present themselves, so it is wise to select the optimum location for successful studying.
The biggest distractions that need to be avoided while studying are; people, computer, phone, sights and sounds, music, television, hunger, and fatigue. Prior to beginning your studying session, it is smart planning to free yourself from potential clutter such as these items.
People are a major distraction to avoid while studying, because if there is heavy traffic in your area, you will be far more tempted to join in conversation, or become nosy as to their comings and goings. A secure location needs to be found for studying, lest you become readily distracted, disturbing your rhythm and flow while filling your mind with useful tidbits, facts, theories, and statistics. Studying in a library setting may provide peace and quiet, but other people can be distracting, whether or not they speak to you or make too much noise. Sometimes, an attractive passerby can prove to be a nuisance due to your new-found inability to look away.
Unless a computer is absolutely vital for your studying (research), it should not be at your disposal. There are far too man distractions associated with computers to make studying a success. If a computer is on, it can be much too tempting to check on your email or Facebook account. People will surf the Internet without purpose, simply because it is there. A computer is a massive distraction, and needs to be avoided wholeheartedly while studying.
The telephone, cell phone included, is another crippling distraction that can render your studying an exercise in futility. Phones are a way of being reached when you should be secluded in isolation. Cell phones bring the added distraction of text messages. The last thing you need while trying to focus on your studying is to be cued to read a brief message littered with spelling mistakes. Phones should be turned off, or ignored at the bare minimum while you are attempting to study.
The sights and sounds from outside can also prove to be a distraction from studying. If you are in your haven of study, but have an open window, the sights and sounds can keep your focus occupied. Draw the shades while studying, so that you are not tempted to peer outside and see what is happening. Daydreaming is inspired by the magical sights and sounds of nature, which is why they need to be avoided.
Music may soothe the savage beast, but if you are attempting to study, the music can be a distraction that needs immediate avoidance. Music does not help you to study, as the lyrics and beat distract your mind. All forms of music should be avoided while studying, with a notable exception possibly being very soft Baroque Classical faintly in the background. Your iPod or other MP3 player should be off, and preferably kept in another room while you are studying free of distractions.
Television should not be on at any point while studying. The images and dialogue are far too difficult to ignore, so a television must not be on during times of study. This not only goes for large screen televisions, but for the small hand-held devices as well. All video games that are played on televison should also be avoided like the plague while you are studying.
Hunger can keep your brain from being able to focus, so having a snack prior to studying is crucial. A snack and something to drink before a study session should be enough to keep your mental alertness, but you could also keep a simple snack handy just in case. Any snack should be neat and tidy, without mess or preparation.
Fatigue is one last way that you can be distracted while trying to study. If you are tired, it is difficult to be able to maintain focus. Reading material can lull you into somnolent sleep if you are already fatigued, so you should pick a good time to study, when you are mentally alert and ready for the studying process.
Becoming distracted while studying is a major hindrance, one that is to be avoided at all costs. The purpose of studying is to keep your focus on the task at hand, so being free of all distractions will significantly aid you in this endeavour.