Time does fly! Just like that, another decade has gone by and we are beginning another year. For sure, everyone has written down New Year’s resolutions for 2020 and what better way to start the year other than developing better study habits, right? Especially when you’re planning to study abroad.
Balancing school, extracurricular activities and life in a foreign country can be quite challenging. You’ve got to come prepared! Be on top of your studies by developing study habits that will give you a head start before you fly out to your study abroad destination.
1. Develop a Study Plan
First things first: as a student, you should be aware of your test schedules, the topics that will be covered, projects that you need to submit, etc. From there, you can create a study plan that outlines important dates (quizzes, exams and project deadlines), and learning goals that you want to achieve.
Estimate how much time you need to study for each subject. Do you need to spend more time studying Math than English? Make a list of topics that will be part of the exam and set goals for each study session. The key is to make an effective plan to avoid cramming and to manage all of your tasks effectively. You can do it!
2. Divide large goals into smaller tasks
For you to reach large goals, you must first start small. Take baby steps. When you do, huge tasks now become more doable and approachable!
Divide larger assignments like essays and exams into smaller, day-to-day tasks. Set specific objectives every day to avoid anything that’s irrelevant for your studies.
Make a schedule of your plans and objectives for the day. Prioritize your most urgent tasks and then include fixed activities such as your classes and extracurriculars. Add your other activities such as your workout schedule, watching Netflix and your sleeping time. We need to have proper work-life balance too!
When you divide large goals into smaller tasks, you avoid procrastinating and the feeling of being overwhelmed. As a result, you become more productive and motivated in school.
3. Schedule big tasks at your most productive time
We all have the same 24 hours every day but, are there moments when you feel like other people accomplish more than you? Well, the answer is simple: effective time management.
Think about the time you where you feel most productive. Is it early morning, late at night or in the afternoon? Once you’ve determined your ideal and most productive time, schedule your more challenging tasks at those times.
When you learn how to manage your time and energy, you can do more each day. Bonus points if you could add in more time for your other passions and hobbies!
4. Keep your study space clutter free
Our surroundings play an important role to help us focus. If your study space is cluttered and distracting, you might not be able to concentrate on your assignments and reviewers.
Organizing your space means you have everything close by to complete your tasks. Avoid clutter as it gets uncomfortable quickly. Also, make your space distraction free. Make sure you are away from your gadgets like televisions, laptops, phones (we know you keep on watching your friends’ IG stories and looking at memes), as these would all distract you from studying.
If you find it difficult to study in your room, we recommend setting up a command centre somewhere else.
Make sure that your family and friends know that you are busy. Treat your study sessions as an important appointment with yourself so you could focus better. Once you learn to discipline yourself, it’ll be easier to keep this habit.
5. Rest, stretch and refuel
Don’t forget to take breaks! In order to maximise your productivity, make sure that you take plenty of breaks to de-stress. If you’ve been sitting for long periods of time, it’s important to stretch or move your body. Exercise is a great way to increase your blood flow, give your mind a break and prepare you for the next study session. And don’t forget to refuel, and boost your brain and your immune system, by eating plenty of nutritious, balanced meals and staying hydrated. Don’t forget to drink your water!
Studying abroad can be quite daunting, but it doesn’t have to be boring. Maximize your time abroad by setting in place these five study habits. If you’ve got study habits that work for you, go ahead and share with us on socials! We’d love to hear it, too.