Apr 29

Overcoming Reading Distractions

If you find yourself getting distracted a lot while you read, try this activity.

A full wall of floor to ceiling bookshelves.

Creative Commons licensed image posted at Flickr by Mr.TinDC

1. Set aside 3 minutes to work on a reading assignment for your class.

2. As you read, any time that you are distracted, make a checkmark on a piece of scrap paper and think to yourself, “I will not be distracted by that again.” At the end of the 3 minutes, look at how many times you were distracted while you were reading by counting the number of checkmarks on your paper.

3. When you can read for 3 minutes without being distracted, try testing yourself for 5 minutes.

4. At the end of the reading assignment, make note of what the greatest length of time that you were able to read without being distracted.

5. Write a short paragraph about the experience and what steps you might take to help you focus better as you read.


1 comment

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  1. Kevmartz11

    I usually do my readings on my desk which is in my room, where it is quiet. Yet it is also the place where I’m more prone to easily get distracted. That is because of my computer is on the desk and I’m always using it. When I read, I usually try to not look at the computer screen in order to concentrate. But not so often I succumb to temptation and and space out while using the computer. This usually happens when I’m either half-way done with the text or almost done.

    I started reading an assigned chapter for another, and had to stop reading because there were some words that I did not understand and had to search for their meaning on the computer. For that instance I got distracted for only three to four times. I checked other websites that were not for the improvement of my understanding of the text. I managed to finish the chapter in fifty minutes with that many distractions, which were done to help me understand the content of the chapter.

    I have done this in the past, where I shut down the monitor of the computer to avoid using it and focus on reading the assigned chapters. I always have a bottle of water to quench my thirst whenever I need to. I may need to use music to block any external noises from my room to concentrate better. I would put the music at an appropriate hearing volume.

  2. gshine

    I always find myself a quiet place to read where distractions are unlikely. I was able to read for 1 hour without any issues. I may prepare a sandwich and a drink in future so that hunger does not contribute to any potential causes of distraction.

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