It is your finals week, you have an important exam tomorrow, and you are thinking “I should write my essay”, but your phone keeps beeping because of Facebook notifications. You have never been more tempted to check social media because what if your favourite celebrity has finally noticed the fan page you're running?
You pick up your phone for 15 minutes and the next thing you know it is almost midnight, leaving just 7 hours for the exam preparation and sleep.
Almost all students have experienced the situation mentioned above. With Facebook, Netflix and other social websites, it is difficult to draw the line between taking a break and procrastination.
These distractions hinder your academic growth, but research shows that your mind can only focus for 45-50 minutes continuously and it is important to take breaks between studying. So how exactly should you maximise your productivity?
Change the Environment
If you are sitting in your local library, chances are that the gloomy atmosphere will exhaust you soon and you would not be able to concentrate effectively. Therefore, after every 50 minutes, make sure that you leave the desk and roam around to refresh your mind.
Get Fresh Air
It is possible to forget what outdoors, and parks even look like during exams. However, you should schedule your breaks for walking in a park to get fresh air as that would relax your mind and make your learning process efficient. If you cannot afford the luxury of strolls, then open the windows of your room for ventilation at least.
Sitting at a desk all day long can affect your physical health. Also, the anxiety of consuming maximum information can build tension in your body so you must do some exercise to regain energy. Do 5-10 minutes exercise routines or use the local track for running. Not only will this prove to be great for your muscles, but it will also maximise brain activity.
Now, this may sound exhausting to some people, but regular readers know that this can be relaxing. Read a blog or a book, preferably one that you have already read, to take your mind off the stress of exams. You can make a cup of coffee and say goodbye to academic pressure for 15 minutes before restarting with your finals routine.
Munching on junk food or snacks while studying is not only unhealthy but also distracting. So if you are scheduling a break, ensure that you utilise it to make a healthy full course meal. Nutrition during exams is important for your brain so always go for healthy options like salads, sandwiches and portions of pasta.
Whether you’re scheduling a break with a friend or putting a timer, it is absolutely necessary to get back to studying once the time is over. Students usually struggle with self-control during exams so it would not be wise to start a new show or an interesting book as that would make it extremely difficult to focus on the material for the finals.