How to Study Efficiently

by | May 24, 2017 | Exam Hacks, Life Happens

Exam. This word might repeatedly bounce in your head.  Why not? You are going to take an exam and for some (including me) paracetamol is the best-selling medicine. Well, everything is going to be fine if you are prepared but what if you’re not?

There is no debate on what’s the best way to excel in an exam. Preparation has always been the best and it is not a straight road to go to in the first place. “What a heck?” you might say, but like my professor once said, “To the stars through rough roads”. Studying is hard and to excel is 5x harder. That is not actually a secret! We’ve been there.

There are times when I think in order to pass or excel, I just need to do the opposite of the things that I am currently doing. I’ll let you be the judge. Here are my study habits that, I believe, greatly affect the results all the exams I took.


1. I am half-hearted

I believe that if someone wants to excel, one must decide to make a hit! If you want to make a hit, you cannot do it half-heartedly. You should do it with a full force. This is the first and most important psychological preparation, you’ll ever make. This will also be the spring of all the efforts you will do to make a difference in your study. Well, I always think that I want it, but I always fail to do the things that I decided to do and  I also lost interest along the way.

2. I cannot isolate myself

You should have a focus. To study effectively, you should have a space conducive to learning. I know lots of people that cannot study at all when they hear noises even at its slightest.

In my case, I have a noisy environment. Kids shouting and running, worst, they will be knocking on your door repeatedly, if you won’t open it. (Grrrrr!) I usually lock myself in an unoccupied room in our house, which is good! The bad side? Other than my kid’s endless knocks, my room is not actually conducive to learning. I always feel sleepy while looking into the bed. With hearts on my eyes, I say, ” “Hey you need a break too”.  And that’s pretty much what happened every time.

Also, I don’t have a comfortable chair. Hey! Some of you may think it’s stupid but it is very important. Comfort is actually necessary. Lasting longer, loving to stay, and wanting to come back are very important feelings.  Now I feel the need to tell you something.  When I was in Manila, I cannot concentrate at all. The weather is too hot for me. I bet no one can concentrate when your sweats are nonstop and a migraine that attacks every single day. I sometimes refuse to understand my fellow ‘kababayans‘ for choosing to live in a very crowded, noisy and super hot place. 

So, you must isolate yourself and must have a study conducive space. There are lots of ways to make your room encouraging. One of those is to paint your room green. The color green usually makes a room feel tranquil.

3. When I study, I study endlessly

I’m not an expert on how brains work, but whenever I stretch my limit, it always fails me. Taking regular study breaks will help.  Regular breaks help your brain absorb more information. A break every 45-50 minutes may do. Studies show that your brain will not work effectively after this time. It’s time to study smarter.

4. I study alone

Do you study alone and ended up doing nothing? I think you should have a study buddy to inspire you. However, you have to make it sure that your companion really understands what you are doing so that you won’t end up chit-chatting.

5. I study it all in one blast

Had you ever experienced studying and then forgot everything that you just memorize and ending up saying, “I know that, but I couldn’t say what it is”. This is mostly because you are not so familiar with it. You just meet that once, if not twice.

A friend of mine said, “Studying is like you are saving in a bank. You have to put small amounts of money every payday”. To pass, one must study every day. Small savings constantly done is better than big chunks, which rarely happens. In effect, all that you’ve studied will be gone in just a few hours (short-term memory).

Tired and unmotivated? Then look at other peoples’ struggle and stories. You can pick a story that will inspire you. I hope this will help someone out there

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