When planning their study routine, many students underestimate the importance of cultivating a positive study environment. This can mean something different for every student, but it is hugely beneficial to consider questions like, ‘in what environment am I most productive?’, ‘who makes me feel like I can achieve my goals?’ or ‘how can I look after myself during times of study stress?’
For Aishling, who has completed the Introductory Skills in Human Resources Management (HRM) and is about to begin a Diploma of HRM, there are a few things that really contribute to a positive study environment.
Finding a place to focus
Because Aishling works in an office, she has easy access to an environment that has already been optimised for productivity.
The place where I do most of my studies is actually at my desk after I have finished work for the day. It doesn’t sound like the most relaxing place, however, I am most focused in this area and I don’t have the puppy distracting me and convincing me to take him for a walk! I enjoy having the 3 screens that I use for my daily work to view my learning materials, and it makes it easier to have my assignment open on one screen and my readings on the other. Knowing I can then head home and relax gets me to keep my head down and push through.
Leaning on friends for support
Everyone needs a support network to reach out to when stress ramps up and you’re really under the pump. For Aishling, talking with friends and making time for social activities help her get through tough spots in her studies.
I have my friends as a support network throughout the busy study times. Sometimes on a Friday evening I would smash out some studies, complete part of an assignment, and then head to the movies with a friend. A great way to be productive and then start the weekend off right!
Getting in the zone with the right tunes
While some people prefer to study in silence to minimise distractions, other students find they really benefit from some background music – to motivate, relax and focus. Aishling has found that peaceful piano music is the perfect way to get in the study zone.
It’s not enough for me to sing along with and get distracted but just enough to drown out any background noise that may also distract me! That, and having lots of snacks to eat always helps to keep me motivated!
For more ideas about how to up your study game, check out our blog posts on study tips.