It’s 5 am and I am all set to study.
I have my time table chalked out before me.
I am going to diligently follow my routine and complete my study schedule for the day.
Did my mobile just beep?
I wonder who it is?
It might be something important.
I will just check this one message and get back to studying.
…….and the story continues.
Does this scene sound familiar to many of you out there? I am sure many students out there experience this almost every day.
Distractions and diversions are the worst hindrances in a student’s life. Always remember that distractions are pulling you away from your life goals.
Stop distractions that have nothing to do with your goals.
As a student, your main aim is to perform well in academics along with a holistic approach to your well-being.
The best ways to concentrate on studies is to avoid getting distracted by unnecessary interruptions and disturbances.
Although it is easier said than done, it is possible that you can overcome your distractions and achieve your goals.
List of Distractions While Studying
Let us look at all the common distractions in a student’s life and try to counter them with some productive measures.
1. Social Media
Needless to say, the top distraction in a student’s life is social media.
Social media means computer applications that allow you to share ideas, thoughts and pictures online.
It is the most addictive distraction for students these days. As a result of social media, many students face several problems, mental as well as physical problems.
There is a compulsive urge to use these social media platforms even at unwarranted times.
A study published in the Journal of Psychological Research on Cyberspace revealed the negative impact of social media on school and college students.
The journal published – Social media addiction can be viewed as one form of Internet addiction, where individuals exhibit a compulsion to use social media to excess.
Individuals with social media addiction are often overly concerned about social media and are driven by an uncontrollable urge to log on to and use social media.
Studies have shown that the symptoms of social media addiction can be manifested in mood, cognition, physical and emotional reactions, and interpersonal and psychological problems.
It has been reported that social media addiction affects approximately 12% of users across social networking sites.
The same study revealed that social media usage and mental health have shown that the prolonged use of social media is positively associated with mental health problems such as stress, anxiety, and depression and negatively associated with long-term well-being.
Although friends play an important role in your overall development, not knowing where to draw the line with friends often results in a backlash.
Hanging out with friends and chatting are the most joyous parts of student life. In fact, it is true that schools and colleges churn out friends for life.
However, don’t let this come in between you and your studies.
It’s sad to say that some friends can negatively impact you instead of having a positive effect.
Some people may want to put you down or discourage you at all times. These kinds of “friends” are a constant distraction and lead to adverse effects on your student goals.
However, at the same time, you must also serve as a motivation for your friends and not a distraction for them.
3. Family Gatherings
Social gatherings and family festivals are a common distraction for students.
Though at times, they may seem unavoidable due to pressure from the family or proximity to the relative, for the most part of the time, they can be avoided.
4. Mobile and Smartphones and The Internet
Another distraction for students is the use of mobile phones and smartphones. The advancement of technology has brought with it certain adverse impacts.
Consequently, one of the worst-hit adverse impacts of technology is the use of smartphones amongst the youth today.
Today, everything uses smartphones. With the internet freely available, it is used for business purposes, shopping, gaming, etc.
It has become an unavoidable blessing and curse at the same time.
A blessing because complicated tasks are now performed from the comfort of your home and a curse because it proves a big distraction for those who are prone to addiction.
However, though it may not always be for the better, cell phones are here to stay.
Research conducted by statista.com revealed a whopping 3 billion smartphone users by 2021. With China, India, and the USA being the top smartphone users in the world.
The crux is in limiting the usage of cell phones and resorting to personal interactions instead of cell phone interactions.
Smartphones and cell phones negatively affect brain functioning.
A study published in the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health stated the impact of cell phone addiction on psychological health in adolescents.
The study revealed mobile addiction not only has physical effects but also psychological and academic effects at the same time.
Sleep deficit, anxiety, stress, and depression which are all associated with internet abuse, have been related to mobile phone usage too.
Mobile phone usage especially in the night hours affects the sleep pattern of students and makes them lethargic and lazy during the day.
The compulsion to use a cell phone at all hours, and being unable to keep it aside are signs that cell phone addiction has set in.
Using your mobile phone as a way to overcome boredom or getting worried or anxious when your phone does not work are also symptoms that you are a cell phone addict.
Apart from smartphones, watching TV is one of the top distractions for students.
An article by the Press Information Bureau mapped the history of the journey of Television in India.
It was in the early ’90s when foreign television made its way into Indian homes and cable tv revolutionised home entertainment.
As the government slowly relaxed regulations, satellite television became more and more affordable to the common people.
This was the onset of television as a big distraction for the youth. A host of new programs brought with it more time spent on television and lesser time on studies.
6. Recreation and Workouts
Often distracted students are the ones that spend more time working out at the gym or indulging in hobbies and extracurricular activities.
These are not wrong, but overdoing these at the wrong times can make these major distractions for students.
Sometimes students indulge in their hobbies during study schedules. This gives them a feeling that they are not unproductive, but are making use of their time.
However, if you look closely, this is actually a clever way of avoiding academic books and studies.
How Do We Overcome These Distractions?
Distractions are easy to come but difficult to overcome. Quoting Tom Kite “You can always find a distraction if you’re looking for one.”
However, there are ways in which we can control our distractions.
Below we have mentioned some ways to try and overcome these distractions and concentrate on your studies.
1. Look at The Bigger Picture
Always look at the bigger picture. Think about what you will be achieving if you concentrate on your studies.
To help you do this you can look up top education portals over the internet that can guide you with the right approach towards studies and offer you the best insights into the premier colleges and universities that could be yours in the future.
When you take a step away from distractions you are taking a step closer to your destination.
2. Turn Off the WiFi
We all know the internet is a beehive of distraction. The first thing you must do is switch off your WiFi or mobile data.
Consequently, with no WiFi or mobile data turned on, the message will not sound and you will feel less distracted and a lesser urge to check messages.
3. Follow a Routine
When it comes to hobbies, workouts and extracurricular activities it is always advisable to set time apart for these activities.
Keep a particular time in the day set aside for your daily workout and your favourite hobby.
4. Informing Family
Inform your family about your study schedule. The family will always respect your study time because they want only the best for you.
Don’t go to social gatherings if it is absolutely unnecessary to go. Your family knows the value of your time and they know the hard work you put in.
5. Spot On
Another important solution to overcoming distractions is to designate a favourable spot in your home or room that is conducive to learning.
At times, students sleep on the bed or study in a room which is noisy and dark. Such an environment distracts the brain easily.
The brain is constantly looking for the perfect atmosphere to do a particular task.
When you are studying, the brain looks for a learning environment and when you want a good sleep your brain looks for that comfortable spot.
We can conclude by following the motto “Starve your distractions and feed your focus”