Do you find it difficult to stay focused while taking online courses?
I’m sure you would agree, the one thing we all have trouble with is staying focused. Whether you’re in school, at work, or doing work at home, it’s difficult to stay on track and diligently get tasks done. Well, you’re not alone, and we’re here to help. We want to make sure you’re getting the most out of our classes or anything you do in life. So, here are some tips on how to stay focused while taking online courses!
Don’t knock it until you’ve actually tried it. Meditation is a guaranteed way to enhance your focus since it takes a great deal of concentration itself. Research from a University showed that students who meditated for just 20 minutes a day for four days performed better on certain tests. Does it make you want to try it now between your online courses? If you can’t seem to make mediation work for you, you can also try yoga or a workout!
For those who need to move, try exercising regularly. This is the most popular and one of my personal favorite tips. Exercise isn’t just good for the body, but it also promotes brain health. This is important for memory capacity and concentration, helping you stay focused in the long run (literally). In addition, regular exercise rewires your memory circuits to improve their functioning, which will improve your results and focus!
You may feel the need to do multiple things at once, but this is actually hurting you more than helping you. When you multitask, you have a lower attention span, memory capacity, and you’re unable to switch from one task to the next efficiently. You’re actually more distracted, which will affect your work ethic. We suggest putting your undivided attention into one task and course at a time, then move onto to the next as soon as it is 100% completed. This will also help keep the feeling of being overwhelmed at bay.
If you’re feeling tired, then a cup of coffee or another caffeine drink can help. In moderate doses, it does boost your focus. Nonetheless, do NOT go crazy. Too much caffeine can give you the jitters, make you feel sick, and reduce your ability to concentrate. Not to mention, you will crash quicker and more easily. Be mindful of the amount of cups you have per day if you want to stay focused while taking online courses.
We’re not saying to take long breaks and to procrastinate. However, taking brief breaks can actually improve your productivity. Whether you choose to take a walk, shower, or look at your phone, your performance will stay consistent with your work. Furthermore, stepping away from a problem can help you come to a better conclusion. So give your brain a break after obtaining a good amount of information from the course and come back to it when you’re ready.
Train Your Brain
Your brain is actually a mental muscle, so there are exercises you can do to train it to stay focused longer. For example, you should always complete work in the same quiet place away from your bed so your brain knows this is where you focus on work and only work. You can also practice concentration by turning off all distractions and committing your attention to a single task at hand. You want to be really diligent with what you put into those allocated hours!
Develop a Schedule/Plan of Attack
If finishing the entire online course seems overwhelming, break it down into bite size pieces that are more manageable for you. Whether that’s 30 minute chunks or maybe even 15 minutes, just do whatever works for you. Then take out a calendar (whether digital or physical) and plan a time to go through each piece. This way, you’ll be more likely to complete each piece because you already have it scheduled in.
Set a Timer
This is one of my favorites and it really works! Anytime you sit down to do your online course set a timer for either 50 minutes or 80 minutes. Then commit to focusing only on the task at hand for that allotted amount of time. Once the time is up, take a 10-15 minute break, then come back and start all over again. Studies have shown that our brains actually cannot handle more than 90 minutes worth of information at one time. So try stopping just short of that and see if it helps. You can even turn it into a fun game and keep score of the number of times you made it to the timer going off. Then work each day to increase that number!
How do you stay focused while taking online courses? What’s your favorite tip? Let us know in the comments!
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