While most people recognize ADHD as a condition that impacts children, they can often forget that you can’t grow out of it and it doesn’t “go away” during the teenage or adult years. When you’re a high school or college student, you still have to be able to deal with the effects of ADHD and learn how to manage the symptoms so they don’t negatively impact your everyday life.
That’s often easier said than done, especially when it comes to studying.
Thankfully, difficult isn’t impossible. With a few tips and determination, you can successfully study with ADHD and stay focused on the right things at the right time.
Let’s cover a few of those tips so you can put them into practice right away.
1. Set Up a Routine and a Calendar
One of the most difficult aspects of studying is finding the motivation to get started. You can make it easier on yourself by establishing a daily routine that includes study time. Schedule your routine for class and meetings, and breaks for study time in a calendar that allows you to have prompts and reminders if you benefit from this additional support to stay on task.
A routine can keep you on track in almost every area of life. You can cross things off your to-do list each day and feel accomplished and motivated all at once. When you get into the habit of daily studying, getting started each time won’t be as difficult.
2. Stay Organized
There’s no denying that people with ADHD aren’t often known for their organizational skills. But, that doesn’t mean you can’t put forth the effort and help yourself, in the process.
Do what it takes to keep yourself organized during your study time. Have a designated place for your study materials. Keep a clean and decluttered desk. Set reminders for yourself on your phone and computer to get things done. Have favorite fidgets on standby to help you stay grounded and focused. The more organized you are, the less likely you’ll lose focus while studying.
3. Prioritize Your Tasks
At any age, prioritizing can be a powerful study tool. Some things will likely need more attention than others, and some things can’t be put on the back burner.
One of the easiest ways to prioritize your study to-do list is to use a color-coded system. Try using different highlighters to remind you which tasks should be done right away, what should be done next, etc. This system allows you to stay focused on the more important tasks first and makes it less likely that you’ll procrastinate.
4. Utilize Task Timers
Consider setting a timer to keep yourself on track with each study task. It can help you stay focused for a short period of time, knowing you have a limit on how long that task takes you.
Setting these timers will keep you motivated, but they’ll also give you an idea of how long each task takes. This will help you better prepare for future study sessions.
5. Stay Active
Physical activity doesn’t just help your body. Getting up and moving around during a long study session is a fantastic way to boost your energy, improve your creativity and focus, and help you find more motivation.
Stand up if you’re starting to feel sluggish or unfocused while studying. Stretch, walk, or have a little solo dance party in your room. Even a few minutes of physical activity can make a difference.
6. Block Distractions
One of the reasons it can be so hard for someone with ADHD to study is that they get distracted easily. Sound familiar?
Do what you can to eliminate distractions during study sessions. Staying organized with a decluttered desk is a good place to start. But, you can take things one step further by putting electronics away unless they’re necessary for studying. Put your phone in airplane mode to limit distraction by texts or notifications. You can also utilize white noise to block out any other distracting sounds so you’ll stay focused.
Studying with ADHD is about finding techniques that work for you. Keep these tips in mind to improve focus and build better study habits. It won’t take long for you to see positive results. If you feel you need additional support from an ADHD specialist, please don’t hesitate to contact us for a free 20-minute phone consultation.