Tips on how to study effectively

Hi friends. Today I thought I would tackle a topic I should be a pro at by now, studying.

It is not fun (I am sorry but that is the truth), but we have to do it in order to be successful, right? This can be applied for those of you who are not in school as well because we should always further educate ourselves and try to acquire new knowledge.

So, what makes me a so called pro in studying? Well, I have survived (almost at least) four years of college at three different universities (two of them being located in the US and one in Sweden). Not only have I almost survived these four years, but I have done so by maintaining my GPA at a 3.75 (4 is an A, 3 points for a B). For those of you who have no clue what that means, I have never received a grade below B.

How do you study successfully?

1. Change your environment

I love to sit at local coffee houses to study. It might seem expensive to pay $4-$5 for a coffee, but I think it is worth it. Why is this? Well, if i sit at a coffee shop to study instead of at home, I get more done in a shorter amount of time. Instead of getting distracted by everything at home (such as TV, cleaning, running to the fridge, etc.) I want to be on my best behavior in public and therefore I do my best to focus on what I am supposed to be doing. I have found that spending those five dollars is well worth it.

2. Make lists

If you know me, you know I am very dependent on my lists. I tend to forget a lot of things, but by writing lists I stay organized. It is such a satisfying feeling to check things off on a list once they are completed.

I try to make two types of lists each week on post it notes, sometimes a make daily ones in addition to my two weekly ones. My two weekly lists are, “urgent”, and “looking ahead”. On the urgent list I include items that I need to get done that week (or day) such as assignments, homework, essays, and quizzes that I need to study for. On the looking ahead list I write down things that are coming up in the near future (next week or the week thereafter) that take longer to finish such as studying for exams, doing projects, and writing research essays.

3. Invest in an agenda

Who would I be without my beloved agenda? Well for one, I would always be late and forget majority of the things I would ever have to get done. In my agenda, I like to store my lists and post it notes. I also write everything down in here (and yes, I mean EVERYTHING). I always transfer all my due dates for everything from my syllabuses on the first day of class to my agenda. In addition to school, I find it very important to write down when I work, when I am hanging out with people, when I have meetings, when I have school events, etc. You get it, everything goes in my agenda. How does this relate to studying?

By having everything written down, I can also plan my week accordingly. If I have a lot in school next week, but also a lot of fun stuff planned, and my current week is pretty airy, I try to get most of the following week's stuff done the previous week. It is easier for me to work ahead and complete assignments beforehand and also study ahead of time instead of on Sunday nights.

So remember:

  1. Change your environment

  2. Make lists

  3. Invest in an agenda

Did you find these tips useful?
What are your study tips?



Self Portrait x 10 and working out.

This post is very personal so please be kind.

I started my day with a workout at Flywheel. It is a cycle studio where they shut off all the lights (except for the ones on the instructor) so the studio is dark. They also measure everything and log it on your profile so you can see it on their app or on your profile online. They have really high music and the workout is intense. It is kind of expensive but Mike was a sweetheart and surprised me with ten classes.

I have been trying to get back into a regular workout routine for quite some time now and it is NOT easy. I workout a couple of times, then I don't again, then I do workout one week, and then I stop, etc. It has been so difficult for me to get back into a steady rhythm. I used to love going to the gym and getting my workout in. It made me feel energized, confident, happy, and empowered. Now, not so much. Now I feel blah about working out. However, I always feel amazing after. I strongly dislike working out alone now that I am so out of shape. I need someone to workout with me or I need to go to a class and have someone telling me what to do. It is easier that way. I feel as if I have lost my discipline and ability to push myself.

I miss being in a good rhythm and routine because I always eat better, and I have more energy throughout my days.  Another thing is, I have been gaining a lot of weight without realizing it. I don't necessarily look like I have gained any weight which is why I have not noticed it. Lately though, A LOT of my clothing does not fit like it supposed to. Not to mention my blazers, suit pants, and jeans. When buying new jeans I have just thought "maybe these run small" although I have just gained weight and needed a bigger size...

My latest wake up call was when my boots from last year would only zip half way up. I was speechless. This happened right before Thanksgiving dinner as I was running out the door. I obviously changed boots but did so confused and sadly. Hopefully these classes will help me get back into somewhat of a rhythm. Once you book a class after 5pm you cannot change your mind without penalty so that is a good incentive. Time to look forward and stop saying "I will start soon" and instead JUST DO IT. Also, now that I have opened up to you guys about this, feel free to remind me how happy I am when I workout. What do you guys do to stay motivated? What workouts do you guys like? Hit me!