Do you need to improve your study skills? Do you get distracted easily? If you think that you should improve this cognitive ability, keep reading.
We are giving you 7 tricks for improving your concentration and designing your own study plan.
It´s very natural to feel anxious and nervous before an exam, although it´s true that not everyone manages themselves in the same way when faced with these emotions.
Pressure accumulates when thinking about the future, emotions take over, your mood and sleep patterns change, as does your perception of reality.
All of this together is a cocktail that is going to seriously damage your ability to concentrate and study. Why not work on your concentration and go into an exam with a greater guarantee of success?
We are giving you some suggestions, analyse them and adapt them to your needs.
1. Look for a good place to study
The best place may not be your house. It´s possible that this environment isn´t ideal due to the multitude of available distractions.
It can be a good idea to prepare for exams in a neutral place, such as a study room, or a library… places that encourage concentration.
This environment must be calm and silent. And you should bring with you everything that you need to create your space for work.
One aspect to consider is the possibility of surrounding yourself with study partners. This can be an extra motivation.
A final thing to consider is making the most out of disconnecting from technology that have us hooked most of the time: Social Media sites, chats, Whatsapp…
2. Plan your study timetable
Before starting to study, dedicate some time to organise what you are going to do. You must be able to prioritise and group the subjects by similarity.
You can´t put English and Physics on the same day, to give one example.
If you are studying English, you could dedicate a day to listening and another to speaking, or even concentrate on revising vocabulary or grammar.
It´s recommendable that you plan your studying – create a dynamic hour for each task. Don´t forget to have a 15-minute break before changing subjects or topics.
3. Learn to synthesise
There’s no point trying to learn absolutely everything and trying to devour an unrealistic amount of information when studying.
You should concentrate on what is essential. It´s fundamental to synthesise to learn the essential content of each area of work.
To improve your concentration when studying, it´s essential to be efficient and productive.
Use techniques such as highlighting in colours, creating graphs, mind maps … Use methods to remember without “memorising”.
4. Prepare for the exam in advance
You will say that this is obvious, but the reality is that the majority of people usually delay this moment as much as possible, and this is a big error.
You must always anticipate the exam. Anxiety and nerves associated with pressure because your assessment is imminent aren´t good when it comes to improving your concentration.
Therefore, you should organise your diary and prepare yourself in advance in order to get your desired results.
5. Change your perception of exams
You must change this vision of exams as being a target. The reality is that they are a means of finding an end.
If you have this vision, the most natural thing is that you are filled with lots of stress during this period of time.
But if you start to consider them as a tool to achieve your goal, the exam in question loses its weight. This will have a positive influence on your state of mind.
With this simple change of perception, you will see your concentration improve when studying.
6. Healthy body, healthy mind
To be able to perform well at an intellectual level, it´s essential to be in shape, and this included sleeping enough, eating adequately in a balanced way, and overall, taking care of yourself. All of these are factors that influence your concentration.
At a nutritional level and in situations that require extra effort, it´s useful to opt for food supplements that include vitamins or other components that increase your health and that reduce your tiredness.
This will be an extra help that will boost your necessary energy to confront this challenge. We aren´t dieticians nor nutritionists, but we seriously recommend that your take care of yourself and that you see a professional to look after your body and your mind.
7. Give yourself rewards
Once you have applied these tricks for improving your concentration, and have achieved better results, it´s good to reward yourself. If you achieve the goals you set, rewarding yourself is very important.
It will serve as a motivation and an incentive for future challenges. Buy yourself something that you want: clothes, an experience, a book…
Follow these guidelines and create your own study method to improve your concentration. Success or failure depends on you, and you can do it.
And if you need help to prepare for an English exam, count on Nathalie Languages.