If you are a student mom and an adult student who wants a new way to make your study time more productive, you should try to study in public places.
Going back to school as adult students, especially as student moms and dads is challenging. Plenty of things that students usually take for granted, become something luxurious for adult students and student moms and dads.
Having responsibilities such as a full-time job and a family to take care of, and not just being able to focus on their study requires them to have amazing time management skills.
Other than that, non-traditional students such as adult students and student moms and dads need to use maximize their study time effectively.
It’s imperative because it’s no secret that most of them won’t have much time to study and therefore, they must use that small amount of time they have to study efficiently.
Easier said than done, unfortunately. A most common problem is how to stay focused and concentrate when there are so many distractions, such as a messy house, a child(ren) asking for our attention, and so on.
One thing that we could do is to have our most effective place to study, a place where we know that once we sit there, we focus our mind on just studying and leave everything behind.
Where is the most effective place to study? The answer may vary, depending on the person. You could set up a nice place to study at home, dedicated only to studying.
But, if you think you find it difficult to concentrate on studying at home, with all the distractions that will prevent you from studying effectively and efficiently, you should try studying in public.
When we were younger, studying in a public space might not be a problem for you since you could go anywhere and anytime you want.
Now that you are older and have children, going out often could be a hassle. You’ll need to think of an arrangement when you are going to leave them in the house (such as who is going to take care of them, or maybe you could only go out when they are at school et cetera)
Living in a pandemic era like this makes going out in public places even more difficult. But as long as you abide by the rules and take health precautions meticulously, going to public places should be ok to do occasionally.
So, why you should try to study in public, especially if you are an adult student or a student mom and dad? Here’s why:
1. Higher Level of Concentration
I went back to school a couple of years ago as an adult student and student mom. It was difficult for me to concentrate at home.
I kept getting distracted; by the piles of laundry, the messy house, and dirty dishes, my daughter calling for my attention every five minutes or so when she was home, et cetera.
So, I tried to study at the public library and cafes around the house or the university. I noticed that I had an insane level of concentration despite being in public places.
People walking by, small distant conversations, and noises from outside didn’t bother me at all. I was so focused I didn’t even feel like leaving my seat even though I wanted to pee.
Not surprisingly actually, in this article for Psychology Today, Ralph Ryback, M.D said “ environmental cues are essential when it comes to habit formation, in part because the brain is excellent at connecting an environment with a specific situation”
Therefore, if studying at home is no longer working effectively for you, studying in a public place when you usually study at home help to trick your brain into helping you accomplish your goals, by fighting your brain’s natural urge to stick to its usual routine.
2. Different Environment
When you have plenty of responsibilities, most of the time you will be too exhausted to do anything, especially studying.
It’s a perfectly normal longing to curl up in your bed when you are supposed to concentrate on your study.
Studying in public places such as libraries or coffee shops could help you eliminate that specific distraction. Your bed is not near you anymore and hence, its gravitational force it’s not strong enough to pull you back to bed when you are supposed to study.
I don’t know about you but I’m guilty of this. Thankfully, I tried to study outside more, and it helps me to concentrate better and study more effectively and efficiently.
If you have the same problem, you should try to study outside. The Coffee Shop Effect (Where it’s easier to focus with a little background noise than it is with complete silence) will definitely help you keep your body and your mind away from your bed.
Sometimes, changing your environment is also the only thing you need to kick your brain into gear and perform better.
3. You Will Perform Better Because You Feels Like Someone Is Watching You
Humans will perform better when they feel like someone is watching them. Children behave better when they know the teacher is watching them or do better when they perform on a stage in front of their parents.
We work harder when we know our boss is watching us or that they monitored our performance. People go to the gym to motivate themselves to work out better knowing that there will be other people looking and doing the same thing.
The same principles apply when it comes to studying and doing your assignments. When you study in public, you have a feeling that someone is watching you.
Thus, you feel like you should behave accordingly, and if you came to study, doing the real work is the only option.
4. You Will Be Motivated to Justify Your Spending
When you the coffee shop to study, you will have to spend money to buy some drinks and snacks, because surely, they won’t let you sit there for hours without ordering anything.
Even if you go to free places such as a public library, for example, most likely you will still have to spend money for gas, public transportation tickets, to pay the nanny if you must leave your children at home, and so on.
Therefore, you will feel obliged to study and work well and provide a good result to justify the amount of money you spent just to be out there and study.
5. And to Justify Your Time
When we go outside the house, we put in an effort such as trying to look presentable. We took shower, put on make-up, chose nice clothes et cetera.
In winter, we need extra time to dress up to put on extra layers to keep our bodies warm. Then we spend another couple of minutes traveling to our study outside destination.
Hence, you don’t want to be guilty of wasting your precious time. Thus, you will force yourself to be more productive with your work, to study effectively and efficiently, and make the most of the time you spend studying in public places.
6. You Have No Other Options Than to Study
When you are sitting at home, the pile of your dirty laundry (or the clean ones that need to be folded), your dirty dishes, or your messy bed could distract you from your study.
You will be tempted to clean them up. Before you know it, hours passed by. Even though you are finished with your household chores, you realized you haven’t even started with your study, and you have exams in a couple of days and tons of study materials to master or dozens of assignments with approaching deadlines.
Even if you manage to stay away from your chores and try to study and work on your assignments, most likely you will find yourself having difficulty focusing.
It’s not surprising at all if your mind keeps traveling back to your kitchen and laundry room, and eventually your body too, by trying to do laundry while studying, for example.
By going to public places to study, you will not have any choice but to concentrate on your study since your pile of dirty laundry and dishes are miles away at home.
There’s nothing more you can do other than finish your study and assignments and deal with your household chores later once you are back home.
7. You Will Have Access to Good Snacks and Study Materials
Some people like to munch on something while they are taking a break from their studies. When you study in a coffee shop, you will have access to an array of drinks and snacks that you can choose from.
You will definitely have more options than when you are studying at home. Especially when you are mostly eating takeout since you are a busy adult student and don’t have time to cook, for example.
Or if you are a student mom or dad, ordering drinks and snacks in a coffee shop occasionally could be a good variation from the healthy snacks you stock up at home for your children.
Although you might not have access to food and drinks in the libraries (in fact it is usually strictly prohibited), it still has an advantage.
You will have direct access to countless materials you need to support your study, ask for advice from the librarian, and so on.
8. Open New Opportunities
Although you came for studying, occasionally, having conversations with some of the people you meet in public places while you are studying could be beneficial for you.
My friend went to a coffee shop to study and work on her assignment. Then this well-dressed lady next to her struck up a conversation.
Turns out she need an assistant and my friend’s educational background and work experiences matched the lady’s requirements.
She then proceeds to apply, following other needed procedures, and got the job, even before she’s graduated from school.
Other friends got some help he very much needed on his project from someone he accidentally met and had a conversation with at the university’s library.
These kinds of things are not unheard of, some next time you sit in public places doing your work, don’t hesitate to occasionally have a polite conversation with a stranger. Who knows? A new opportunity will open for you.
Over to You
As adult students and student moms or dads, we have a little amount of study, which we must use as effectively and efficiently as possible if we want to achieve great results.
If you are having difficulty concentrating on your study at home and having trouble being productive with your study time, you could try to study in public places such as libraries and coffee shops.
Is studying outside effective? It depends, but for sure, you could have plenty of benefits such as having a higher concentration level, could study in a different environment, and you could perform better because you feel like someone is watching you.
Moreover, you will be motivated to study better and provide good results, to justify your spending and your time away from home.
You will concentrate better because there will be no distractions like you always have when studying at home, plus you could get easy access to drinks and snacks if you study at a coffee shop, or easy access to countless study materials when you study at libraries.
Most importantly, when you study in public places, there are opportunities to meet with people who could be beneficial for your study and further career, so don’t be shy to occasionally talk to strangers you meet while studying outside.
So, what do you think? Is it better to study at home or outside? What is your favorite public place to study?
Leave a comment down below, I would like to hear from you. Pin it and share them on social media if you find them useful, it means the world to me…
Thanks so much and till next time!
- 7 Amazing Advantages of Attending Online School, as Student Moms and Mature Students
- 10 Things You Need to Check Before Choosing an Online College Part 1
- 10 Things You Need to Check Before Choosing an Online College Part 2
Follow me on Instagram