When pursuing a degree online, time and location suddenly become very flexible. However, it can be difficult to define what your educational space should look like.
If you’re struggling with setting up a space that maximizes your productivity, here are some tips.
Designate a Study Space
Dedicate a whole room to your studies—and preferably not your bedroom! Your body subconsciously creates different “zones” for activities you do throughout the day. The kitchen is associated with cooking and eating, the living room with family and relaxation and the bedroom with sleeping. Studying in your bed or even your bedroom can make you lethargic and unproductive.
Determining that a room is solely for your studies will help your body “zone it off” that way as well, and you will consequently be more focused on the tasks the room is meant for.
Perfect Your Lighting
Speaking of getting sleepy, the lighting in your work space can also have a huge effect on your drowsiness, too. Low lighting strains your eyes and, similar to the room “zones,” is associated with going to sleep. On the other end of the spectrum, when lighting is too bright it can cause headaches or create uncomfortable heat in the room. These situations are distracting and uncomfortable, so create a lighting setup in your study room that is low enough to not be distracting but bright enough to keep you awake.
There is nothing more distracting than a repetitive noise, loud talking or a conversation being carried out within your earshot. Start by asking those that may live or work around your study space to be quiet during your study hours. Let them know what times of day are important for you to have peaceful surroundings. You could even hang a “do not disturb” sign on your door if the times vary.
If outside distractions are difficult to maintain, try your own methods, such as white-noise machines or noise-cancelling headphones that allow you to control the atmosphere of your study space.