Sometimes staying focused is one of the hardest things to do in school. In college, staying focused is probably the hardest thing that I had to do. Sure, my assignments were hard, but there was nothing harder than having to sit myself down and actually do the homework. If you are in the same boat as me, here are 10 tips to stay focused on your homework, or any other pressing assignment, that you have to do.
1) Break the Habit Stop procrastinating. If you know that you have an assignment due in two weeks, sit down and get started. Don’t justify to yourself that you have better things to do―most of the time you won’t. If you don’t procrastinate, you are less likely to have to focus for long periods of time.
2) Firm Resolve Resolve that you are going to stay focused. Don’t allow yourself to be distracted by anything. Just simply telling yourself that you will stop procrastinating may not be enough, so do something motivational. For example if you stick up post-it notes of dos and don’ts, you can catch yourself if you start looking around (because you will see the notes).
3) Don’t Look At Your Phone How many times have you sat down to do something important right as you get a phone call? Before sitting down to do your project, turn off your phone (after making sure any important business is taken care of).
4) Set a Goal Set goals, or benchmarks, for yourself as you write. For example, tell yourself that you want to get a page done every hour, and see how you do. If you can meet your goals, you will be able to see how successful you have been. Once you have that positive reinforcement, it is a lot easier to keep yourself motivated.
5) Put Headphones In If listening to music helps you focus, stick some headphones in your ears so no one can distract you. If your roommates, or friends, are coming around and see you with headphones, they won’t bother you unless it’s something important. If listening to music doesn’t help you focus, do it anyway–the appearance of focus is always better than the alternative.
6) Disconnect the Internet If it comes to that point, just disconnect the Internet. Even if you need to do research online, restrict yourself to certain sites. Don’t go to any others than those that you absolutely need.
7) Relax People make assignments a lot harder than they need to be simply by not doing them. If you have the discipline to set your own schedule, then you can budge the time you need to get your assignment done. If you hold off doing the assignment until the night before it’s due, focus will be almost impossible.
8) Avoid the Caffeine You might think that caffeine will help you, but it will only give you a quick high and an even faster, and longer, low. If you are hyper, you won’t be able to focus and get things done.
9) Close the Door If you are in a room, close the door. People are less likely to bother you if they have to knock. Furthermore, if you have your headphones in (like step five detailed) you have every excuse for not hearing anyone if they’re knocking on your door.
10) Separate Yourself If you really have to get something done, stay away from your apartment (or anywhere else you can be social). The less you are around people, the more likely you will get things done, and you will have your phone off. That way, you can’t be bothered by anyone, right?
If you have a project to do, use these 10 tips to stay focused. You will be glad that you did.
About the Author
Neltje Ann Maynez writes some things for MyCollegesandCareers.com. My Colleges and Careers is a Web site that offers full-service placement benefits to those with the motivation and determination to go back to school. If you’re truly committed, MCC will help you find the best online colleges which will help you advance to the glorious future you always had planned for yourself.