The middle of semester can feel like you’re just being handed one thing after the other on top of lectures, tutorials and reading lists. Throw in a part time job and a fraction of a social life, and watch your free time disappear… or try these minimalist study hacks to streamline your study habits.
Hack #1: Clean up
Get your KonMari on and clean up your study space. Seriously, you need to clear your desk of everything – apart from your laptop and whatever book or document you need for the task at hand. Create and cultivate a calm space.
If your desk is too much too deal with, take a shortcut and get yourself to a campus library for an instant minimalist work environment!
Hack #2: One goal focus
Feeling overwhelmed? Throw out the to-do list and instead focus on just one goal.
It might be reading five papers for your research methodologies paper or writing the introduction section of an essay. Pick one key thing will move you towards getting that big (slightly scary) thing done.
Hack #3: Turn it off
Your phone, your email, all those pesky notifications. Each time you respond you lose focus and in turn precious study time, so just turn it off and don’t look back.
Hack #4: Study alone
Study groups can be amazing spaces to share ideas but they can also easily slip-slide into a caffeinated catch-up session.
For serious study, you may need to hide on the top floor of the library and pump out that placement report.
Hack #5: Take a break
To boost productivity, take a break. One 24-hour period per week, which is study and work free, can provide a chance to catch up on sleep, exercise and life admin. So, you have space for daily study sessions throughout the rest of the week.
Hack #6: Don’t study all day
Think about when you feel most alert and take advantage of your increased energy levels to get more done in less time.
Three ninety-minute focused study sessions can equate to much higher output than an eight-hour marathon in the library, where you are desperately trying to stay awake.
Hack #7: Plan of attack
At the end of each study session, make a quick plan for the next chunk of work you are going to attack. Planning at the end of each session can save a huge amount of time as you won’t have to spend time re-reading and trying to figure out what you are going to write next.