How to stay focused while studying? 5 productivity hacks (2021)


(6 minutes read)


As the saying goes, “Procrastination is the thief of time”. We open up our laptop to work or book to study, but next thing we know, we’re 10 ft down instagram feed. Did staying focused in this world become impossible at the rise of social media platforms and other types of distractions?! so how can we improve productivity?


While the rise of social media platform has made it harder to stay focused, it has never been more important to “stay focused”. As Cal Newport, the father of deepwork, has mentioned “Shallow Work: Noncognitively demanding, logistical-style tasks, often performed while distracted. These efforts tend to not create much new value in the world and are easy to replicate.
However, deepwork is: "The ability to perform deep work is becoming increasingly rare at exactly the same time it is becoming increasingly valuable in our economy. As a consequence, the few who cultivate this skill, and then make it the core of their working life, will thrive.”


Table of Productivity Hack:



1. Hack #1: Detox Social Media & YT to not waste time🧹


Take free browser extensions to your advantage! Here’s the question? Do you (mainly) work from your smartphone or your laptop/PC?🤔 If it’s the latter option, doesn't it make sense to have all the productivity extensions installed on your browser? Especially if they’re free?!
This is why we created BeTimeful free browser extension. Every time we went to YouTube for education, we ended up watching a video on beluga whales doing somersault that was recommended to us. At the same time, it didn’t make sense for us to use an app or an extension that blocks the entire YT platform as it’s still useful for educating ourselves for free.

Facebook distraction
Before
undistracted facebook
After

Via BeTimeful you still would be able to network & stay connected without getting hooked in the feed.


2. Hack #2: Time block your day to not lose focus🗓


“There cannot be a crisis next week. My schedule is already full”. - Henry Kissinger

Here’s the question? In which calendar do you think you’d be more motivated to work & would be less tempted to fire up social media?



Option 1: Time blocking

Opion 2:

no time block


Do you get the point?

Even if both persons have the same amount of work. Psychologically, the person’s mind, who has a scheduled calendar, won’t wander around as it’s programmed to get the work done leaving the guesswork out of the way. Therefore, as the person is aware that he’s limited to waste, subconsciously his level of focus intensifies!

Know the trick to getting this done is to:

  • 1. Schedule in advance so once you’re awake head straight to accomplishing your goals
  • 2. DON’T schedule your deep work sessions every day but use google calendar's custom option to apply it every day, every other day or any other custom choice:

google calendar options
Learn more on why Time blocking helps.


Fortunately, as scheduling is an extremely powerful tool to boost productivity, we made sure it’s incorporated to BeTimeful’s extension which turned out to be the most popular feature by people. As people, scheduled their deep work via the popup or integrated it with their google calendar?

Do you know what’s even the better part?
Once you schedule your work with BeTimeful, even if you get distracted & attempt to turn it off, we hit you with: As we know that you’re in your work time which has been people's favorite functionality so far. In other words, even once willpower doesn’t work, we got your back! Try now.


Hack #3: Set pomodoro timer 🍅


A 5 hour deep work session might not be for everyone or may not work everyday. It’s hard to get ourselves focused for 5 hours if we can’t even do 1 hour. Then we should pomodoro! Francesco Cirillo, a university student at the time, invented the Pomodoro Technique in the late 1980s. Cirillo was having trouble concentrating on his academics and completing projects. He asked himself to commit to only 10 minutes of dedicated study time because he was feeling overwhelmed. Encouraged by the challenge, he discovered a tomato-shaped kitchen timer (pomodoro in Italian), and the Pomodoro technique was created.

Despite the fact that Cirillo went on to publish a 130-page book about it, the method's greatest strength is its simplicity: Set a timer for half an hour and focus solely on one task until the timer goes off. Mark off one pomodoro and keep track of what you accomplished at the end of your session. After that, take a five-minute pause. Take a lengthier, more restorative 15-30 minute break after four pomodoros.

What makes the technique so effective?

  • A. Making it easy to just get started


    Procrastination, according to research, has little to do with laziness or a lack of self-control. Rather, we procrastinate in order to prevent unpleasant feelings. It's unsettling to face a large task or project that you may not know how to complete or that entails a lot of ambiguity.
    So, if only temporarily, we resort to Instagram or Reddit to lift our spirits. Therefore, “pomodoring” allows you to take baby step until you’re in the zone.


  • B. Combating distractions


    As each pomodoro is dedicated to one task, you’d be less likely to allow yourself to get distracted because if you do, you would run out of time! & Yes, BeTimeful has built-in pomodoro which automatically DeFeeds all social media platforms ( in case you forgot or got distracted during pomodoro) & Unfeeds when the timer stops!



GIF ON HOW POMODERO WORKS

Learn more about pomodoro timer technique

Hack #4: Fuel your body 🥗


When “hanger” strikes, we all know what occurs. A big focus fail is the terrible mix of hunger and rage.

Make sure you don't delay or miss meals to keep your brain engaged, your energy levels up, and your emotions in check.

To keep nourished, strike a balance of lean protein, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fats. If you are hungry in between meals, snack on fresh fruit, vegetables, nuts, or seeds, and drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.

Harvard Medical School recommends including a handful of these "excellent brain foods" in your day for an extra boost:

  • ✔️ green, leafy vegetables like kale, spinach, and broccoli
  • ✔️ fatty fish such as salmon
  • ✔️ berries, like blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, or blackberries
  • ✔️ walnuts
  • ✔️ tea and coffee for the caffeine, in moderation



Hack #5: Minimize multitasking ✋ stay on task


According to a 2009 Stanford study, multitaskers may appear superhuman, but they pay a high price. About half of a group of 100 Stanford undergraduates identified as media multitaskers. The other half, on the other hand, did not.

The multitaskers did worse on each test, which measured their attention spans, memory capacity, and ability to switch from one task to the next.

"They're suckers for irrelevancy. Everything distracts them," Clifford Nass, who was a researcher for the study, said in a Stanford press release.


Conclusion:


In short; DeFeed it, Time Block it, Pomodoro it, Fuel it, & minimize multitasking “it”. If you’re aiming for the perfect strategy to get you from a couch potato to a productivity mastermind overnight, then you may not turn into one or just be disappointed. However, if you pick the skills up & start applying overtime, then you would gain yourself productivity bragging rights to flex to your colleagues & friends!


The cost of trying Betimfeul: Zero money. 60 seconds of your time to set it up.

The cost of not trying Betimfeul: 1-2 hours of lost time per day.