Tips on avoiding distractions:
For students sitting the Junior Cert in June, there is no denying the fact that the next few weeks are going to be tough. Students will be expected to minimise time spent on things they may enjoy such as going on social media, watching television, going out with their friends, and pretty much everything that is not studying. It is vital that students study as much as possible between now and June, and it is equally important that this study time is productive and distraction-free. There are many things going on in a teenager’s life that could potentially distract them from studying, and here is a guide on how to avoid these inconvenient interruptions.
- Stay away from Social Media:
The biggest distraction in recent times is social media. There is a constant wave of messages and notifications coming into teenagers’ phones, and it is almost impossible to study productively while paying attention to these. You may just be ‘checking something on your phone’, but once you go onto your various forms of social media you can easily spend 20 to 30 minutes, or even hours on them without even realising it.
I would say that you should give up social media for the next few weeks, but I do understand that most teens would find this impossible. However, I recommend you don’t bring your phone with you when you are studying and if you are studying using a laptop or computer do not log on to these sites. If necessary you can check your social media accounts for an hour or so when you have completely finished studying in the evening. Remember, even just looking at social media for a minute could completely distract you from studying for the rest of the day.
- Find a quiet and peaceful study environment:
It is important that you find a quiet place to study in order to avoid potential distraction. It can be difficult to study when you can hear everything that’s going on around the house. If it is not possible to find a quiet spot, I’m sure you family would be happy to make an effort to keep the noise level down when they know you are studying. This can also relate to people studying in school or libraries, do not surround yourself with people that distract you. Try find somewhere quiet to sit were you can be productive.
- Start studying once you get home:
I advise that you start studying as soon as you can when you get home. Do not tell yourself that you will ‘Start later’ or ‘I’ll just watch TV for half an hour first’ if you keep on putting it off you could spend hours doing nothing before you start, resulting in you wasting time and potentially not getting as much done as you had planned. When you get home you will be focused as you have been in school all day, even if you take a break for 30 min – 1hr you may start feeling tired and lazy, and you will not be in the mood to study at all. To avoid this distraction and time wasting, I recommend coming home from school promptly, getting something to eat and drink for 10 minutes, and then begin studying as soon as possible.
If you are a person who needs to take a break after school and cannot begin to study straight away, do something that will help you to concentrate when you do begin studying. Make sure that you do something beneficial like exercising or playing a musical instrument and avoid electronics.
- Keep yourself interested:
Boredom is the gateway to distraction so it is important that you keep yourself interested in what it is that you are studying. Do not spend a week or even a day studying a single chapter or topic, vary what it is that you are revising so that you are not getting bored of looking at the same old thing over and over again.
- Stay motivated:
At the end of the day, to avoid being distracted you need to stay motivated. Typically, as the JC approaches, the weather will start getting very nice, and it can be difficult to study when the sun is shining and you can hear kids playing outside. The temptation to go outside with your friends or take a day off studying will be immense, and only sheer motivation will stop you from doing this.
Sign up to JC-Learn HERE if you want even more content like this.