Learning can be difficult at the best of times. It can be hard to stay concentrated, especially if you're not properly prepared. Thankfully there are many ways to get the most out of your learning time.
Whether you're trying to learn a new language, preparing for a test, or anything else, we've come up with ten great tips that will make your life easier. All you need to do is read on to find out more!
10 Tips for More Efficient Learning
Want to make the most out of your learning time? If so, follow these ten tips!
1. Have a Good Diet
Having a good diet is not just good for overall body health, but it can be important for maintaining concentration and focus. While it may seem like a good idea to treat yourself to a takeaway, that's not going to be a good idea.
Heavy meals will make you feel sluggish and drowsy. Processed foods don't help either and along with trans fats, these can negatively impact your brain health. And while caffeine and sugar can provide a temporary boost of energy, they can also make you crash and increase anxiety.
2. Take Breaks
One of the best things you can do when learning is to not learn at all! Often if we're concentrating for long periods, we can start to lose focus. What you're trying to learn just isn't sticking in your head and you need to repeatedly read the same information.
The best thing to do in this situation is to take a break. This can be as brief as getting a drink and getting some stretches, or you can take a longer break and do some exercise. You'll then go back to your learning in a much better head space.
3. Improve Your Desk Space
Whether it's an office desk, kids' desk, or a work desk at home, if it's not set up properly, you won't be able to learn at your optimum level. Firstly, it should be uncluttered to allow you space to fully concentrate on the task at hand.
For an office or children's desk, you want to be ergonomically set up so you don't have any trouble with aches and pains. If you wanted something a little different, then a standing desk can be a great idea as it helps to keep you alert and that blood flowing.
4. Stick to One Task
Don't get distracted, even by other tasks. You want to stick to one task and one task only. You want to set out a clear goal and follow it through. For example, you can tell yourself you'll read this next chapter before doing anything else.
Depending on what you're learning, you can alter this to your needs. If it helps, you can also set yourself timers where you can't do anything else until the time has elapsed. Switching between tasks is inefficient and will only confuse you.
5. Teach an Imaginary Person
Whatever you're learning, you want to be confident enough in it that you can teach it to someone else. A real person would be great, but instead you can just teach an imaginary learner instead!
This doesn't have to be some complicated roleplay, and you don't even need to speak out loud. Think about how you'd teach someone the material and what questions they'd ask. If you get stuck, then you'll know where the holes in your knowledge are.
6. Experiment with Learning Styles
Whether it's a school, office, or somewhere else, we have too much emphasis on learning by reading, as not everyone finds this the best way to learn. Make sure to mix it up and experiment with different learning styles.
For example, you could record yourself talking about the topic if you're an auditory learner, create a video if you're a visual learner, or build something if you're a kinesthetic learner. Find you're preferred method and use it.
7. Sleep Well
"Pulling an all-nighter" may be a legendary way to hand in a last-minute assignment, but it's a dreadful way to learn. Sometimes it may be needed, but only ever in an emergency, as you'll never be at your peak performance.
Instead, get some sleep! You may see sleep as a waste of time but you'll be much more efficient in your learning. The best thing to do is plan your time efficiently so you never feel the need to cut down on your precious sleeping time.
8. Find a Study Partner
You may not be comfortable with this, and that's okay. But if you find a reliable study partner, it can make your life much easier. You are able to share ideas, test yourself and try out different learning methods together.
As we mentioned above, you can even teach each other too. However, you want to ensure that you're staying concentrated and don't let yourself be distracted.
9. Take Practice Tests
Whatever you're learning for, prepare for the real-world scenario. For example, if you're practicing for a test then make sure to find places where you can take a practice test.
Even if that’s not practical, then try and give yourself an environment that is as close as possible to test conditions.
10. Listen to Music
Find a way to block out distractions. While there are a few ways to do that, music is a great method While that's true, you don't want to be distracted by the music so listening to the latest chart hits or the radio may not be the best for you.
Instead, putting on some instrumental music, such as classical music, may be the way to go. Find something that will drown out any background noise.
Learning can be tough but if you follow these ten methods, you'll make your life a lot easier. It can be difficult to block out distractions but if you're disciplined with yourself and use these tips and tricks, you'll achieve all of your goals!