Steps to Improve Concentration Level
The students report problems concentrating on their studies. Most of these students blame outside distractions for their problems. Many research studies manipulating noise levels and distractions have found that such disturbances may increase, decrease, or not even affect concentration. These researchers have therefore concluded that distracters don't cause concentration problems directly. It is the way the distracters are interpreted by the students that disrupts their study.
Steps To Improve The Concentration Level
- Creating a study environment.
- Find a place to study and keep it for study only. (Don’t keep on changing places.)
- Tool-up the environment with all study needs. ( keep stationeries & books on your table)
- Control noise level and the visual environment to acceptable levels.
- Avoid relaxing while working; create a work atmosphere. (Don’t watch TV while relaxing).
When To Study
- Best during the day and early evening; you will remember better.
- Best when there are fewest competing activities in progress.
- Best when adequate rest periods are provided.
- Stop studying when fatigue or lack of attention occurs.
How To Study & Concentrate
- When distracters are present, become intensely involved. ( when somebody is around or some event is diverting your mind then start reading or studying more with dedication)
- Keep a pad of paper handy to jot down extraneous thoughts that cross your mind while studying, get them out of your mind, and on to paper.
- Set study goals before you begin each period of study (number of pages, number of problems, etc.).
- Design adequate rewards after specified goals are attained.
- Break up the content of study by mixing up subjects and building in variety and interest and removing boredom.
- Make the most of rest periods-do something quite different.
- Don't try to mix work and play.
- Start with short study periods and slowly build to longer periods only as fast as you maintain concentration.
- If necessary, make a calendar of events to clear your mind of distractions.
- Plan the length of your study period by the amount of material you have decided to cover, not by the clock. (Often the clock is one of the most serious distracters.)
How to Space your Studies:
- Get a dedicated space, chair, table, lighting and environment Avoid your cell phone or telephone. Put up a sign to avoid being disturbed or interrupted. If you like music in the background, OK, but don't let it, be a distraction.
- Stick to a routine, efficient study schedule and accommodate your day/night time energy levels.
- Before you begin studying, take a few minutes to summarize a few objectives, gather what you will need, and think of a general strategy of accomplishment.
- Incentives - Create an incentive if necessary for successfully completing a task, such as calling a friend, a food treat, a walk, etc. For special projects such as term papers, design projects, long book reviews, set up a special incentive.
- Change topics or change the subject you study every one to two hours for variety.
- Vary your study activities Alternate reading with more active learning exercises helps a lot.
- Take regular, scheduled breaks that fit you. Do something different from what you have been doing (e.g., walk around if you have been sitting), and in a different area.
- Give yourself a reward when you've completed a task
Worry or Think Time
Research has proven that people who use a worry time find themselves worrying 35 percent less of the time within four weeks.
- Set aside a specific time each day to think about the things that keep entering your mind and interfering with your concentration.
- When you become aware of a distracting thought, remind yourself that you have a special time to think about them,
- Let the thought go, perhaps with "Be here now,"
- Keep your appointment to worry or think about those distracting issues.
Tallying your mental wanderings
Have a 3 x 5 inch card handy. Draw two lines dividing the card into three sections. Label them "morning," "afternoon," and "evening."
Each time your mind wanders, make a tally in the appropriate section. Keep a card for each day. As your skills build, you'll see the number of tallies decrease.
Maximize your energy level
When is your energy level at its highest? When are your low energy times? Study your most difficult courses at your high energy times. Sharpest early in the evening? Study your most difficult course then. Later in the evening? Work on your easier courses or the ones you enjoy the most. Most students put off the tough studies until later in the evening when they become tired, and it is more difficult to concentrate. Reverse that. Study hard subjects at peak energy times; easier ones later. This alone can help to improve your concentration.
As an exercise before you begin studying; think of those times when concentration is not a problem for you--no matter what situation. Now try to feel or image yourself in that situation. Recapture that experience immediately before your studies by placing yourself in that moment. Repeat before each study session.