3 tips to getting yourself back on track and into focus for you school work or job! Easy to understand and easy to do - http://danidearest.com/ #college #life #work #studyblr #studyIf you’ve been sticking around with me for a while, you might have noticed that my usual posting every other day has diminished to once or twice a week lately. Sorry I’m slacking! I wanted to take this time to apologize for that and let you know that I’m getting back on track with this blog.

School has gotten really busy and discouraging lately, but I’ve been working hard to keep on top of my grades and unfortunately that means that I have not had enough time to share my thoughts and tips with all of you.

However, I wanted to share with you what I have been up to lately in my college world!

Here’s three simple things that I’m doing now to keep myself on track and to get my work done.

A Breath of Fresh Air

I’ve begun to take more of my work outside of my dorm and have found that it is my key to tackling my to-do list.  On top of this, I have discovered Working outside always helps me get focused! #college #studya new study technique for me: working near people. Not necessarily with people, but just being around people who are also focused on their work at the time tends to keep me in check from procrastinating.

As you can see in this picture, I spend every Tuesday and Thursday sitting outside in my dorm’s courtyard with my friend Mario! We hardly even talk while we work, simply listen to our own music and enjoy each other’s company with a Starbucks drink.

I might be a highlighter nerd.. color coding is great for helping memorization!


Highlighters & Color Coding

As I’ve mentioned previously in many posts, such as in this one about my planner, I am in love with color coding. I’ve assigned a specific color to each of my classes, created a color key as a bookmark in my planner, and use that color code for everything from my assignment schedule to my post-it note calendar and even my Google Calendar and more.

While I’m in class I also tend to color code while I take notes. I might do a full post about my note taking strategy another day, but the main thing that I do is I highlight the topic for each section in pink to separate it from the rest, any terms with definitions following it in yellow, and any facts or important statistics I should know in orange. I do stray from that system sometimes… and the guy who sits next to my in my Dinosaurs class (in which I took that picture to the left today) makes fun of me for my love of highlighters.. but it really saves me time when it comes to studying for a test.


 Don't forget to treat yo' self! #parksandrec #treatyoself #college #studyTreat Yo’ Self

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: There is a time for work and there is a time to relax.But also, there is a time to mix both together!

Who says you can’t work and play at the same time? Want to eat some nutella but you have a paper to write? Do both! Need to read 5 chapters of a textbook before your next class? Reward yourself with a bite of your favorite snack or 10 minutes of your favorite show on Netflix after every chapter you complete.

This form of cheating my own system has always worked very well for me. Some people know this as the ‘gummy bear’ strategy, where you leave a trail of gummy bears down a textbook on different paragraphs and once you reach the gummy bear in your reading then you celebrate by eating it. I’ve been doing this for years, from rewarding myself with an M&M every time I finished two math equations in middle school to taking a 10 minute nap in between each subject of homework.

Try it out, see if that celebration your brain does when you reward it can trick yourself into staying on task!

What do you do to stay focused and to get yourself on track? I would love to hear your thoughts below!

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3 Tips to Staying Focused
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15 thoughts on “3 Tips to Staying Focused

  • February 20, 2015 at 10:48 am
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    I definitely have to have snacks with me whenever I’m working. I’m currently in the last 8 weeks of my master’s degree program and I think the hardest part is just getting started. I’ve found that sometimes I just need to get some positive music going first and then I feel more encouraged. I work better under pressure so I think that helps me focus better as well.
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  • February 20, 2015 at 11:17 am
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    Working outside or even just taking an ACTUAL breath is such a relaxing method to clearing your head. I love taking a walk outside or a dip in the water to refresh my soul. It helps me clear my head and be able to write better or focus on my day ahead!

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  • February 21, 2015 at 4:32 pm
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    Love your 3 tips and I also follow them, or something close to it. I often bring my uber portable Lenovo Yoga Pro 3 (truly a convertible laptop & tablet!) everywhere I go. Turns out I am inspired from my ambiance…whether it’s the bookstore, coffee shop, the parking lot, etc. 🙂
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  • February 22, 2015 at 2:15 pm
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    Good tips. I find having a to-do list and setting up my calendar to show chunks of time when I plan to work on certain projects work well. Also, if I’m really off track, I try to tell myself to just do the easiest thing on my list. Sometimes just checking something off makes me feel like I’m getting things done and helps me refocus.
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  • February 22, 2015 at 6:42 pm
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    These are all great tips for staying focused! I know it can be kind of difficult to be motivated at this point in the semester with the work piling up and the weather being cold and dreary. Thankfully spring is right around the corner! Good luck with keeping on top of your work for the rest of the semester 🙂
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  • January 4, 2016 at 8:43 am
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    I generally walk around when I am memorizing a chapter or subject…it just helps me get in the mood within a matter of seconds. It is music that actually breaks my concentration ( with an exception for maths because I just can’t seem to complete a sum without getting that positive motivation from my music; also because in math, you do not have to memorise :)) unlike many of my friends who use music as the basic factor for anchoring their attention to studies. and as for the treat idea, it is great, but the people who are body conscious might be a little apprehensive of this method. In my high school years, I was a chubby kid; but ironically, I was a workaholic too. So i used this “treat” strategy in my senior year…but instead of eating candies or desserts, I resorted to doing 15 minutes of strenuous cardio exercise ( in substantial amounts ). This helped me to kill two birds with a stone; helping me loose the extra pounds and also simultaneously making my mind fresh enough to grasp and complete the studying on time ( though you may get physically tired, for me, I used to get mentally refreshed)

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    • January 11, 2016 at 1:22 pm
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      When I memorized an entire 5 page essay to re-write during a class I paced throughout my room constantly! (I also yelled it because that helped for some reason haha)
      The exercise idea is a great one! I never thought of that.. definitely going to give it a try.

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  • January 24, 2017 at 10:50 am
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    I love working in cute little coffeeshops! The vibe is so peaceful and gets me in the mood to be productive. Not to mention the awesome people-watching while on a study break 🙂

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