STUDY FOR LONG HOURS

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How to series no 10

How to study for long hours

Exams are what we all go through at some point during our lives, some more than others so here are some pointers to help you manage long periods of productive study time and even pull all nighters. I’m not going to include stuff like wear comfy clothes and keep the cellphone away because you already know it. So here we go with the rest..

1.A good start– Start after a good rest preferably 8hrs of sleep if you study in the morning or a good relaxing 90 min nap if after a long day of work.Fresh start is better if you have a study plan of 6-8 hrs at one go. The important point here is to make sure that you end it with a couple of stretching exercises so that your body keeps up a good circulation going on in all the muscles which were not used during your desk time.

2.Study space– have a personal work station be it in the home office or a desk and chair in a corner. The feel of sitting on chair and table with proper light makes you do your work in a more important and official way. Library environment is better conducive to exams preparations than at home in bed. Keep the  tv/phone/distractions at bay.
3.Hydration and nutrition – Keep a water bottle and some fruit within reach. The water is to keep you hydrated and prevent you getting drowsy. Also frequent toilet breaks won’t let you sleep easily. Fruits are light and healthy options since heavy meals tend to induce sleep. Have some nuts to munch on in between if you like. Avoid meals loaded with carbs especially fried foods like chips which are more harmful in the long run.

4.Fixed time- Start studying at same time every day. This helps your body to prepare itself for the task ahead and adjust better. Find what hours suit you the best, are you an early bird? or a night owl? Whatever is your peak time, just stick to that.

5.Breaks– Its a risk as well as a benefit so be extra careful here. Take breaks for 10 mins only after studying for 50 mins. Set an alarm if you have to or you can do 10 minutes chores like fold the laundry, take out the trash, take a stroll, dance to music or workout in between study breaks. The trick is to avoid doing what you love spending time on like instagram or Netflix. These act as distractions which tire you and it becomes difficult to go back to the focus zone again.

6.Track the progress– Keep a record of your study hours just like you do at your job. Imagine yourself having a 9-5 workday. Daily charting down of your hours helps to keep up the self discipline and motivation. If you plan to study for say 6 hrs each day it will take a few days for the concentration levels to build up. Start by trying study 30 mins more each day till you reach your goal.

7. Divide time- If you cant sit at the same place for long you can do it in parts instead of an 8 hour stretch. Divide it into 4 parts of 2 hour sessions each. When you study in sessions you can reinvent eg. session 1 for learning – fresh mind retains more. Session 2- problem solving/ practice test since you have the juices flowing. Session 3- light reading. Session-4 revising.

8.Variety- When studying for finals where you have 8-10 subjects pair different subjects- a major subject with a minor. Select topics that are a major chunks of the subject and do them first. The easy part can be kept for light reading later on. Break the monotony and keep it fun.

9. Study techniques– if the traditional method that you use is not working anymore try different methods like active reading, highlighting, summarising, making notes, teaching yourself etc. You can learn about various study techniques from the internet and adopt what speaks to you and does justice to your subject.

10.Rewarda good day with an episode on Netflix or a treat at the end. Rewards are a way of encouraging positive changes. But do plan extra carefully if you did not have a good study day this time. Don’t worry you will get there over time, be patient and carry on.

If you have reached here, a little reward for your extra boost!

11.Bonus tip– Change location /subject/topic if you not getting it anymore. You have read it 5 times but still not getting it , its better to turn the page and keep it for the end.  Don’t waste more time than you already did. 

Pick up your books and get started!!! I believe in you.

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