Creating a Great Study Space
Have you ever felt overwhelmed by your studies? Or so consumed by your activities that you feel you don’t have enough time to devote to your studies? With so many distractions left and right, you may find it difficult to dedicate yourself to your studies as well as you should. However, within every student lies the potential to succeed, and reaching that potential requires focus and diligence.
This is where a study space can come in handy. Do you have a study space to call your own? Developing great habits is the key to consistent academic success, and a study space should be at the top of your list. A great study space will allow you to get into the zone as you work toward your academic goals.
1. Choose one spot and make it your own
Designating a single space as your study zone is a great way to develop consistency and maximize efficiency. Ideally, you want your body and brain to know it’s time to get down to business as soon as you enter the space. Having one space can also help reduce the potential distractions that pop up when you study in many different places. Really embrace the opportunity to customize the space to your liking because owning the space will instill a sense of pride, making it more likely that you’ll use the space for its designated purpose.
2. Stock your space
You can’t have a study space without materials, so stock up! Since different classes require different items, take into account your course load to determine which items you need in your space. Of course, you’ll need a chair, a desk, a computer, notebooks, textbooks, and writing utensils. But don’t neglect some less obvious items, such as a paper calendar, decorations/plants, healthy snacks, and headphones.
3. Eliminate any distractions
When you enter your study space, your number one priority should be studying. Anything that will interfere with your goals must be put on hold, including phones, games, multiple open tabs, other people, pets, etc. These distractors will still be there once you finish your work, so make it your mission to minimize their impact on your concentration and focus.
4. Establish a comfortable balance
Setting up your study space in a way that is inviting will make it that much easier to step into the space and get to work. If you’re uncomfortable, you will start to react negatively and defeat the purpose of a great study space. Consider the ergonomics of your workspace, and aim for a desk, chair and computer that will allow you to study comfortably for extended periods of time. Natural light can do wonders for your energy, so you may want to set up your space near a window that captures sunlight. However, much of your studying may come after the sun goes down, so a desk lamp can be a useful investment. Also, don’t forget to take temperature into account. Do what you can to ensure your space has an ideal temperature for you.
5. Instead of music, try ambient/background noise
Yes, music can put you in the mood to focus and study, but more often than not, music (especially music with lyrics) can simply get in the way as another distractor. There are numerous apps and websites that play ambient/background noise. Find one that works for you and watch your productivity soar. Remember, your music will still be there waiting for you once you’ve completed your tasks.
At the end of the day, a great study space is one that works for you. No two study spaces should mirror one another because we’re all unique individuals. Think outside the box and cater to your own needs to create the best possible study space. The goal is to create a place where you can make efficient use of your study time and where you will want to return again and again. So start now and be ready to rock once finals, APS and standardized tests roll around. You’ll be glad you did it!