Here are five ways you can supercharge your study session and ace your classes:
1. Put your phone away
Listen, if you can't do this one simple thing, you're in big trouble.
You're distracting yourself every time you check your phone, and it takes at least half an hour to entirely refocus your brain and achieve the 'flow' state where you're most productive.
Phones are addictive by design. In James Clear's book "Atomic Habits" (highly recommended) he outlines the feedback loop of a habit.
Here's how it works:
Essentially, something triggers your craving, which is the queue. In this case, it's hearing your phone ding.
Then you get the craving: you want to check your phone.
Your reaction is putting down your pencil to check your phone, and the reward is the hit of dopamine you get when you see a like, comment, or match on Tinder.
And here's another issue with your phone, particularly social media: it's designed to be addictive.
In fact, the big tech companies invest millions if not billions of dollars to optimize their platforms for maximum addictiveness.
Companies like Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, etc. make their money from ad revenue. People pay to advertise on their platforms.
The more people on their platform, the more people see ads. And the more people see ads, the more money they make.
In order to show you as many ads as possible, they hook you on the platform with an insanely powerful chemical called dopamine, which rewards you for taking certain actions.
The psychology of dopamine and social media addiction is interesting, but not the point of this article.
On the bright side, you can use this system to "hack" your habits and make yourself addicted to productive things.
If you're interested in learning more, again, I HIGHLY recommend Atomic Habits. It's an insanely powerful book.
Here's the bottom line:
The process repeats itself in a negative feedback loop until you become addicted - and this goes for everything.
If you want to study without being distracted and having to constantly re-focus, you should turn your phone off, or put it on airplane mode.