Smartphone addiction is no joke. With the rise of social media, screen time is skyrocketing, and your online image becomes as important as your physical presence. And a smartphone grants the easiest access to the online world, thus, becoming the greatest distraction in your studies session.
There is a high probability of ending up watching cat videos or vine compilations when looking for a playlist to study. But even though it would be impossible to cut out smartphones from your day completely, you can manage this distraction with a couple of tricks. So here are some easy habits to include to avoid your phone while studying.
Find your weak spot
First of all, you need to understand what is distracting you the most. There is definitely an app or a website that you regularly check instead of looking for an essay service to complete your assignments. And you already know what it is just by reading this sentence.
Are you a social media addict and cannot get off of Instagram or TikTok? Or do you spend too much time on Pinterest looking for illustrations for your side art project? Spot what takes too much of your time. Think not only about the obvious problem but also about the second most time-consuming and distracting applications or websites.
To track how much time you spend on those, look at your screen time statistics. You will clearly see what are the most dangerous areas for procrastination. It might be a good idea to delete the most distracting app for you from the phone completely. Hence, you won’t have access to it in a few clicks.
There are a couple of ways to keep yourself focused on your studies instead of scrolling through your feed. But the best one would be to turn to devices that block you from using apps or websites for a certain amount of time. So, even when you’d like to take a break by looking at “just one” cat video, you would not be able to do that.
Install a website blocker like Freedom or Limit to eliminate access to your most distracting apps during your study sessions. You can also combine these tools with the Pomodoro method or any time-management system that you’re using. Just set the timer for the interval of study and repeat it after your long break.
However, if you find it too difficult to put away your phone, set off your timer for the whole time of your study session. Use your breaks to do eye exercises, or just rewind and prepare for the next study interval.
Turn off notifications
Another great tactic to keep your focus on studying is to turn off notifications. If you get a message that your favorite Youtuber has just posted a new video, you’re much more likely to watch it. And then you’ll end up in a rabbit hole of endless suggested videos instead of doing your homework and preparing for an exam.
Go to your app settings and remove notifications to help you focus on your studies at the moment. Maybe only leave the ones for email since there’s not much distracting information in them, and you can miss something important from uni. You can always check your social media later and catch everything after you’re finished with your assignments.
Use apps that control screen time
It might be that a phone itself is the greatest distraction for you. Even if you’re blocked apps and websites for some time, you seem to always find ways to stare at your phone screen instead of studying. Whether it’s spontaneously writing lists in notes or playing CandyCrush.
To avoid this, install apps that block your phone completely for the time of your study session. There are many options to choose from on the market. Here are some of the most useful and creative ones:
- StayFocused. This one is pretty self-explanatory. It blocks all the apps and notifications from them during your study sessions. And there’s no way to undo the block until the time runs out.
- Forest. This option is more friendly and creative. It locks your phone from using it for the chosen time while you see a tree on your lock screen grow. Plus, every tree that grows digitally will also be planted in real life. So that’s a win for your studies and the planet.
- PawBlock. Another cute option to keep you on track. This one blocks your phone and shows a cute animal picture that asks you not to get distracted.
Stay away from your phone. Literally
The most old-fashioned but yet not least effective method is literally to put your phone away. Have a box or place where the phone goes when you’re studying. Ideally, keep it somewhere that is not close to your working place. So, when you get up to get your phone for “just 5 minutes”, you have time to think if that’s a good idea.
It is also useful to study in a group. It would be easier to keep focus together if somebody is not constantly texting. Have a container to put all your phones away and proceed with studying. Do not disregard safety measures. If you’re worried about your phone getting stolen, just agree on the no phone policy during the study session and keep each other accountable.
Keep it slow but consistent
If you cannot stay away from your phone even for ten minutes, do not expect yourself to stay laser-focused on your studies on the first try. Do not install hard-core apps that mess with your operating systems. Try doing small steps first and start with a twenty-minute study session with regulated breaks.
Practice digital awareness and well-being daily to improve your progress. Be mindful of how much you spend your time on the phone in general. It would be easier to keep on track with your studies if you’ll slowly incorporate a reduction of screen time in your daily life.
That’s about it. Find out what the most distracting apps and websites are on your phone, use blockers that keep you from going on the said apps and websites, and turn off the notifications. Try out apps that lock your phone completely for the chosen period, physically put your phone away, start slow, and grow your progress steadily.