It’s easier now than ever before for students at all levels to get distracted. Actually, it’s easier than ever before for anyone to get distracted. The phone is what ancient Greek philosophers would call a pharmakon.
Take out your mobile phone to look up the definition of pharmakon and you may find yourself three hours later reading about thalassophobia. Text your friend to tell them you probably have thalassophobia and you may find yourself three hours later playing against your friend in mobile 8-ball. Best out of 99.
The mobile phone can make life either harder or easier for students at college, university, and the best online high school in Ontario, depending on how they use it. If you’re a student, your mobile phone can cure your curiosity about unfamiliar words such as thalassophobia while distracting you from what you should be curious about in the moment, such as who said life is “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.” (It was Thomas Hobbes.)
Life Is No Longer Solitary, But Rather Too Social
Maybe life is still poor, nasty, brutish, and short, but it’s not very solitary, not when you can connect with all your friends, family, acquaintances, and then some by clicking a few keys. Life is not solitary, but rather too social. Social, and super distracting. It can be very difficult to focus on studying, no matter who you are.
Since you started reading this article, how many times have you looked at your phone?
Phone Habits Today
If you’re a student and your answer is zero, congratulations. The average American checks their phone nearly 100 times per day. But if your answer is one or more, you may tend to have a problem with checking your phone a little too often when you’re studying.
Fortunately, there’s a way to fix that problem, and it’s very straightforward: when you study, don’t look at your phone. How? With these two life hacks.
Life Hack #1 Turn Off Push Notifications
You’re more likely to check your phone—and stay on your phone—when you get a notification saying your friend liked this or that post or your favourite store is having a big sale. These notifications spark your curiosity. Which post did the friend like? Just how big is this sale?
Plus, your brain might get a rush of dopamine when you see a notification, and this dopamine rush can be addictive. That’s one among many reasons people are addicted to their phones.
To prevent succumbing to the notification trap when you’re preparing for an exam or writing a paper, just turn off notifications. You might feel FOMO. But the pros will outweigh the cons.
Life Hack #2 Store Your Phone Where It’s Hard to Access
If you place your phone on your bed when you should be studying in the living room, there’s a good chance you’ll just go to your room and retrieve your phone the moment temptation strikes.
However, if you hide your phone inside a mason jar, inside a plastic food storage container, inside a breadbasket, inside the highest cabinet in the kitchen, you’re more likely to resist the temptation. At every step of the way, you’ll ask yourself, “Do I really need to look at my phone right now?” Probably, the answer will be no.