Here are 5 tips to survive all-nighters, or even just improve your concentration.
1. Eat right to survive all-nighters
If it's not possible for you to get sleep at all one night, you're going to need to boost your energy levels somehow. If you have a high caffeine tolerance and you know it won't make you jittery or restless, try coffee or tea while you study. Caffeine In small amounts can drastically improve your energy and focus for long nights of studying.
WARNING: Be aware of what you put into your body. It's recommended to avoid energy drinks, for they often contain supplements to increase the negative effects of caffeine, such as increased heart rate, anxiety and shortness of breath.
Another good idea for all-nighters is to avoid sugary foods if you're going to snack, because they can make you crash sooner. Instead, stick to a protein rich snack or fruit.
2. The right work space makes all the difference
Studies show that having a distraction-free workspace that you use each day will help you focus; if you are in the same environment every day, your brain will remember that it's time to concentrate and study whenever you go there. If your regular study space has too many distractions, try relocating. You may find that the kitchen table is a much more effective place to get work done than in your bedroom, where your TV and Facebook and Xbox are tempting you to break focus on studying.
3. Cramming vs. Consistency
I'm guilty of breaking this rule often, but it's a fact: Consistent, over-time studying is much more effective and helps you retain information better than cramming the night before a test. You hear time management from your teachers all the time, and although it's annoying, it's quite true. The difference that ten minutes of studying new material each night can make in the long run will surprise you.
4. Sleep, sleep, sleep!
You know how much sleep your body needs, and it's sad but true that some can run off of much less than others. Make a pledge to yourself to resist refreshing Facebook or YouTube for the thousandth time and get an extra hour of sleep in instead. A good night's sleep does much more for your body than a quick trip to Starbucks in the morning, and as a teenager you need more sleep for your body to function properly than you ever will again in your lifetime.
Also, if you are pulling an all-nighter to study and it is impossible for you to stay awake at one in the morning, take a nap. Twenty minutes of rest could make you feel significantly more refreshed and energized.
5. Take breaks and treat yourself
It's difficult when you're stressing over that paper that you absolutely must get done, but taking breaks between assignments or at intervals throughout your study time could help you focus, and of course studying all night is not the most exciting thing to do. To keep yourself interested, be sure to reward yourself often for your hard work.