5 Tips to Help You Out of Your Study Rut

Posted July 11, 2019, by Michelle Marshall

According to a 2018 National Student Wellbeing and Study Survey, 48% of students surveyed are uncomfortable with the way that they study.  

That’s a sad state of affairs for three reasons.  

  1. Some students may give up on their studies and throw away the career that they dream about.  

  2. Most of these students will associate negative feelings toward the idea of studying in the future.

  3. Otherwise, perfectly capable students will experience anxiety, low esteem, and a sense of failure before they’ve even started their career.

Fortunately, this article will solve all three problems.  That’s because you’re about to discover – five useful tips to help you out of your study rut.  

Research shows students feel stuck in their studies

Tip #1:  Build Your Study Skills 

Some of the reasons why students are dissatisfied with their studies are because they didn’t learn effective study techniques in the first place.  Avoid making study mistakes that could be costing you big time and go back to basics!

  • Develop your reading skills. Do not simply read what is said, but take the time to interpret what you’re reading also. Stop every few paragraphs to digest what you’re reading. 
  • Work on your note-taking skills. Use your own words to interpret what you’re reading/hearing. 
  • Carefully plan your assignments to ensure your work is relevant and well-constructed
  • Reflect on past work and the feedback you received to learn from your mistakes 
  • Find a study buddy and bounce ideas and thoughts off each other

Tip #2: Plan Your Studies

Making a plan, or timetable for your studies will help you stay on top of things. It’s one of the best study guides out there but you do need to stick to the plan! Just make sure to allocate some time for developing your study skills too.  

The article linked here offers you some great tips on how to manage your time well AND boost your productivity.  It’s a great study guide. It also includes information about how to optimise your energy levels too. 

Tip #3: Recognise That You Are in a Study Rut and Seek Help

Half of the problems with problems are that people often don’t realise they have a problem!  

It’s hard to self reflect at the best of times.  But if you are living independently for the first time as many students do, you may not find it easy to discern between what is a part of everyday life that you need to adjust to, and what is a problem that needs resolving, especially when it comes to studying.   

So, below are some clues to help you determine whether you are in a study rut: 

  • A distinct lack of inspiration
  • Finding plenty of other more ‘important’ or fun things to do over studying
  • Doubting yourself and your studies too much
  • Feeling lonely and isolated when you study
  • Letting things slide that you know you shouldn’t
  • Disorganised with your studies

If you recognise that you are in a study rut here are a few ways to dig yourself out.  

  • Learn how to motivate yourself
  • Don’t study alone
  • Speak to others 
  • Seek out the support services available from your course provider
  • Master tip number 4!

Tip #4:  Create A Strategy To Manage Your Different Study Issues

Create and implement strategies for almost every issue you find related to your studies.  These could include:

  • Deal with topics you don’t understand
  • Manage stress and overwhelm
  • Revise new concepts
  • To plan your studies
  • Master the art of time management
  • Overcome procrastination
  • Decrease the feeling of isolation and loneliness.
  • Figure out your learning style and take advantage of it

An excellent way to begin to create these strategies is to look at what other people do to deal with a particular issue.  Especially people who are more experienced, or who appear to be good at whatever it is that you are trying to improve. Then implement and practice their strategies.  

Tip #5:  Break All Big Things Into Small Bitesize Pieces

Remember that everything in life begins with one small thing and then builds on that, which means that your studies can be broken down into small pieces too.  

If you break your studies into bite-size chunks, you’ll find that you begin to notice the rewards for your efforts fast.  


You just discovered five tips that will help you out of your study rut. However, a word of warning – just knowing how to get out of the study rut isn’t going to assist you.

That’s because the key is that you need to take action on what you just learned in this study guide without adding it to your list of things to be overwhelmed about. 

We encourage you to review each tip and then start implementing them right away. Because the sooner you do, the easier your studies will become.


Michelle Marshall

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