Imagine this. You open the door home, sighing with relief, the day is over. You run to the fridge for a snack, and scroll through Instagram. After you’re done, you finally work up the courage to start your homework. Fast forward a couple of hours later, you’re in a frantic rush to finish.
“Where did the time go?” “I’m so going to fail!”
Does this sound like you?
Homework can be a constant struggle for most students, however, there are many tips and tricks to help you finish quicker, absorb the material faster, and ace all of your tests!
- Don’t waste time.
I know this is heavily emphasized, but procrastination is a real everyday struggle. Once you start Netflix, there’s no stopping, even if you promise yourself you’ll be done in 15 minutes. Instead, use your object of procrastination as a reward. Do your homework first, then watch Netflix. Focus on concentration, and if you have trouble staying on task, the next tip(s) may help you.
- Listen to Music
You probably already like to listen to music while you work, but is the music the right type? You might already know the genre of music that works best for you, but studies show that music without words is the best to help with concentration. Classical music, especially Mozart, is proven to increase short term memory and productivity. However, there are many different specific homework melodies on YouTube you can search through and try. Below is my personal favorite to listen while studying.
- Take Breaks
Constant focus on a task can really wear you down, so it is very important to take breaks. The Atlantic conducted a study in which they determined that the optimal time for continuous studying is 52 minutes, with 17 minute breaks, so spend around 50 minutes on your homework and take 15 minute breaks in between. Also, avoid your screen during your break, it wastes your time, and often leads you to extend your break.
To relieve your stress, take part in a physical activity, even if you’re not on any sports teams. Go for an easy jog, or lift away your stress at the gym. Even a quick walk around your house should suffice.
- Spend time outdoors.
Spending all day sitting in a classroom can take its toll on you. Your body needs some fresh air to rejuvenate after a hard day. If you have the opportunity to do your homework outside, take it! The fresh air will clear your mind and allow you to be more productive.
- Study for your tests early.
Most of the time, we wait until the last day to prepare for a test. You try to cram it all in the day before, but in reality, no great grade is going to result from it. Instead spread your studying over at least 3 days. Study the concepts you don’t understand as well on the first day, then review them the second day and study the rest of the content. Finally, the night before your test, all you have to do is review!
“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” ~ Benjamin Franklin
- Get more sleep.
Sleep is vital for increasing concentration and productivity during and after school hours. It also boosts your performance during sports, and decreases your chance of getting a sports-related injury. An average high schooler needs about 9 hours of sleep per night, and although it’s hard, following the tips above should help you finish your work faster and let you sleep longer.
Hopefully these tips help you to reduce stress from homework on a daily basis. I use these tips almost every day, and my school life has become much less of a battle.
Check back every week for new content on the De-Stressing page!