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As exams and deadlines creep up on you, you are willing to do whatever it takes to stay on track with your work. In an ideal world, you would be studying consistently according to your study schedule, finishing your assignments at least a week before it is due, going through your study materials every afternoon at your library. But let us be brutally honest. It does not always turn out to be this way.

I am sure you have tried really hard to stick to a study schedule. You may have planned out an entire study timetable and paste it on your wall. But as time goes by, it gets forgotten or you just lose motivation to stick to it anymore.

 

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If you are reading this, you are nodding your head along to what has just been said. You know that most exam preparation tips out there expects you to be a highly motivated, self-disciplined student.

But this article is not one of those.

We are going to get right down to business and give you some achievable and practical study tips for you to actually plan a study schedule that you are able to stick to it and follow through all the way till the end of the year.

1. Never overestimate yourself.

Yes, yes, we need to believe in ourselves, we need to push ourselves to our limits, we need to challenge ourselves to greater things each day, yadda yadda. But when it comes to planning out a study timetable, you need to stop cramming too many things in hopes of completing them in a short time. Sit down and actually think about the timeframe it takes you to complete an assignment or finish studying a chapter. This way you will know that you can finish the tasks in the allocated time frame instead of giving up easily after you fail to stick to the timetable.

2. Be flexible.

One of the biggest mistakes students often make when planning a study timetable is they feel tied to it. When something unexpected pops up, they panic and freak out. When it comes to your study timetable, always remember it is there to guide you to study consistently, and not strangle you to death. If there is a pop-up test suddenly announced, it is okay to shift your other assignments to a day behind and focus on your test. If your assignment deadline is being postponed, it is okay for you to spend some extra time with your grandparents, as long as you know when to get back to work. Learn to be flexible while following your study schedule so you will not feel overwhelmed and give up altogether.

3. Experiment with your study timetable.

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There may be certain things that work for others but not necessarily for you. You can try out your study schedule for one or two weeks and revise it again. You may learn that studying in the morning is more conducive for you, so you can push the most challenging subjects to mornings when you are more alert, and push subjects that you are better at to afternoons when you may feel a slight energy slump. Always switch things up in your study schedule to fit you better and then you can make the most out of your day.

4. Remember to allocate time for rest.

Many students tend to plan an ideal study timetable that fits all homework, assignments, exam materials into their study schedule. But often they forget to slot in time for rest in between their work. Research has shown that our human mind is only able to focus up to 45 minutes maximum, and then it starts to wander. Hence, always remember to accommodate time for 5 to 15 minutes break in between your study schedule. This way, you can create a balance and stay alert for the next study session. You do not have to pen down every minute of your study schedule, but rather allocate some extra time for each slot so you can have time for short breaks to reenergized.

5. Remove chances of distractions.

We all know that saying, when you try to study, everything else around you becomes so much more interesting. Although there is no way to completely take away all distractions, but you can help yourself by removing the chances of being distracted. For example, you should turn off your phone and internet connection when you are in a study session, so you will be less likely to scroll social media pages or chat up with a friend, or even make appointments to hang out with them. It is also better for you to study in a conducive study space where there is no TV or siblings playing games to distract you. Take away the likelihood of being distracted, and you are sure to be more likely to stick to your study timetable and finish what you plan to.

A very good way to stick to your study schedule in the long term is by positive reinforcement. And that means rewarding yourself each time you manage to stick to your study plan. Through time, your brain will associate being disciplined and following your study schedule with rewards and you will be more motivated to stick with it. Small rewards like watching a 20 minutes sitcom at the end of the day, or scrolling Facebook or Instagram for 5 minutes after every 45 minutes study session can do you good. As long as you make sure your rewards do not distract you from the next task at hand, it will definitely motivate you to stick to your study timetable.

We hope these practical tips on how to plan and stick to your study timetable can help you with your exam preparations. Always remember to be realistic when it comes to planning your schedule so you will be able to follow through it in the long run.

If you are struggling with your homework or studies, you can check out the tips on whether you need to attend tuition or you can get a home tutor with A+ Home Tuition right away.

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