Education, study and knowledge

Difficulties with studies: how to manage them?

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Although in most cases it does not allow you to earn a salary, there is no doubt that studying is just another job; a very important area of ​​life, in which adopting some strategies or others brings us closer or further away from having reasons for celebration at the end of the academic year.

That is why, every year, hundreds of thousands of people make getting the most out of their studies as a priority, something that is not always easy. There are many obstacles that can come between the student and the goals that he / she sets, and even knowing how to recognize exactly what those problems consist of is a challenge.

Therefore, here we will see some key ideas that psychologists with training in support of higher education apply when helping people who seek help from us to pass exams, take public exams, etc.

  • Related article: "The 8 higher psychological processes"

How to deal with difficulties with studies?

Follow these guidelines to improve your performance when studying.

1. Sleep well

It may seem strange that the first tip does not have to do with the time that what you do while studying, but in reality it is not.

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Something as simple as getting little sleep may be making you perform a lot less, even if you don't realize it..

In fact, there is evidence that spending 10 days sleeping just under 6 hours has the same impact on our mental alertness as going without sleep for more than 24 hours. Fortunately, if you begin to rest properly, your mental fluidity returns to normal.

2. Create a study plan as concrete as possible

The study sessions of each week have to be defined in advance in your agenda. It is very important to have a schedule in which you specify on what days and when to study each of the content you want to learn.

This will not only help you to establish your priorities well, but it will allow you to monitor your activity and know what aspects of your day to day interfere the most with your study sessions, by having a global vision of what you have been doing during the week.

3. Pay attention to the stimuli you usually receive when studying

If you have been having a hard time studying properly for a while, this may be because there are elements that distract you.

Maintain discipline when it comes to staying away from distractions, establishing a list of stimuli that you should avoid. For example, put your mobile phone in another room so that its lights and sounds do not distract you while you study, make sure you are not near any television on, and look for the part of your home where you have calmer.

By the way, even if you think that listening to music is good for studying, it is worth avoiding this as well: it has been proven that the only type of activity in which the fact of listening to music does not interfere is the one that is based on repetitive and monotonous tasks, which do not require concentrating a lot, such as washing dishes or washing dishes, or conversely those that are totally based on creativity and expression artistic. When it comes to studying, your attention cannot be divided into several tasks, nor exposed to being distracted from time to time by the part you like the most of a song.

4. Try to spend time in places with fresh air

If possible, start exposing yourself more to places with little pollution, where vegetation predominates. It has been proven that students who study in schools surrounded by nature perform better and get better grades regardless of their social class, and at the same time it is known that pollution causes a set of skills known as working memory to decline, which is our ability to retain various elements in our mind to manipulate and combine them with each other in our imagination and obtain new information or find solutions to problems.

5. Set yourself a break schedule

It is preferable to rest frequently than to try to study for two hours at a time and end up mixing study sessions with leisure sessions using distractions such as YouTube videos. If you plan study sessions of about 40 or 45 minutes separated from each other by 10-minute breaks, you will have controlled the time you spend to air your mindBut if you set unrealistic goals, your breaks are more likely to turn into wasted mornings or afternoons.

  • You may be interested: "6 easy relaxation techniques to combat stress"

6. Take notes of your doubts

It is very useful to have a place where you can write down exclusively the doubts that arise. You can do it by writing down references to the part of the notes or the book with which that question is related.

It is also good that in your study plan you have periods specifically dedicated to solving these doubts.Either by asking teachers, colleagues or seeking the advice of experts online. Remember that being aware that you have knowledge gaps is very useful information; do not waste it.

7. Ask exam questions in your mind

You can put yourself in the shoes of an evaluator and put yourself to the test. In this way, doubts that you had and were not aware of will come to light.. For example, you can ask yourself what are the differences between two similar concepts, in what way are two concepts related, what are the phases in which a process is divided, etc.

Looking for support for your studies?

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If you are interested in psychological assistance to support your studies, you can contact our team of experts. The psychologists of UPAD Psicología y Coaching have been helping people to improve their performance for years faced with these types of challenges, monitoring the training process and providing methods to deal with anxiety, make the most of study time, improve the ability to memorize, and many other keys to learn effectively and consistent.

You can count on our assistance both in person at our center in Madrid and through our online services if you do not reside in the capital. To see our contact information, go to this page.

Bibliographic references:

  • Dadvand, P.; Nieuwenhuijsen, M. J.; Esnaola, M.; Forns, J.; Basagaña, X., Alvarez-Pedrerol, M., et al. (2015). Green spaces and cognitive development in primary schoolchildren, PNAS, 112 (26): pp. 7937 - 7942.
  • Smith, C.A. & Morris, L.W. (1977). Differential effects of stimulative and sedative music on anxiety, concentration, and performance. Psychological Reports 41 (3 pt. 2): pp. 1047 - 1053.
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