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While Studying, Always Keep A Blank Paper By Your Side To Improve Focus

Here is a simple study hack that can save you time and prevent you from getting distracted- keep a blank sheet of paper next to you. It may sound too simple, but sometimes a simple tool can have a profound effect on dealing with complicated systems. And human attention system is one of such complicated systems. 

In fact, humans have two attention systems. The first conscious system is used for studying, while the second subconscious one runs in the background looking for stimuli. This is why you get distracted by your own stream of thoughts when studying. 


In his book Getting Things Done, David Allen says "if you don't pay appropriate attention to what has your attention, it will take more of your attention than it deserves." More often these thoughts generated by the subconscious mind can derail your whole focus from what is really important. It can be a chore you have to do in next day, a phone call you have to make or a cool name for your dream rock band. Whatever they are, in most cases, they can wait and doesn't require immediate attention. 

By keeping a blank sheet of paper, you are preventing yourself from being distracted and get caught in this loop. Writing down these thoughts on that paper helps you dump them outside your mind, and makes sure you will work on them later. "You must use your mind to get things off your mind," says David Allen and this is one of the simple ways to accomplish that. 

You can expand this concept to your daily life by having an 'inbox' for capturing everything that comes to your mind that doesn't require immediate attention. It can be an app on your phone or a physical notebook or paper. 

Source: lifehacker

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