There’s nothing worse than sitting in front of your computer, with an empty Word document blinding you with an all-white screen.
It’s almost as if the empty page is taunting your inability to get your homework done.
The blank screen serves as a reminder that you can’t do anything else until you get this assignment finished.
This is a common problem that will plague you throughout your entire educational career.
Why Can’t I Do My Homework?
There will be many things trying to leach your attention away from the project at hand.
Whether you’ve got friends messaging you about the latest game release or music that is impossible to not rock out to, you need to consider your environment.
Sometimes, the distraction isn’t coming from an outside force, but rather something that is going on inside you.
Lack of food and sleep can impair your ability to function more than you may realize at first.
Medical problems can be massive, inescapable issues.
Whether you’re in physical, mental, or emotional pain, it is easy to let these things consume your mind.
These are distractions that must be dealt with immediately.
When there is too much going on with your schedule or too much going on around you, it can cause your mind to run in circles.
The exhaustion that comes with a busy schedule is enough to wipe out any student’s focus.
Whatever is causing you to be distracted should be dealt with if at all possible.
During this period in your life, your education is the most important thing going on. Your education is the foundation for your future.
Don’t let distractions stop you from being able to get your work done.
Even if you’re worried that you may not be able to get your work done well, it is better to turn something in than nothing at all.
Late work may be acceptable in middle school and high school, but the majority of college professors won’t even look at your late work.
They won’t accept excuses like “I didn’t have the time” or “I couldn’t focus”.
That’s why it is so important to get into the habit of never having late work.
Late work won’t be allowed in your future career, either.
1. Lack Of Nutrition
One of the reasons that you may be feeling distracted is that your brain doesn’t have the proper nutrients it needs to function.
Doing your homework requires a lot of brainpower, so you need to feed your brain.
In order to support healthy brain function, you’re going to need protein, antioxidants, Omega-3 fatty acids, dietary cholesterol, monounsaturated fats, water, and small amounts of caffeine.
Each nutrient serves your brain in a different way.
Protein is extremely important for your bones, muscles, and brain.
It helps your brain tell the rest of your body what to do and helps improve your mood.
You can find protein in foods like meat, eggs, fish, nuts, beans, dairy, and soy products.
Antioxidants are going to help stop your brain from aging and can help when you’re feeling mentally fatigued.
Fruits and vegetables are excellent sources of antioxidants, with berries being especially packed with these superior nutrients.
Omega-3 fatty acids help your brain work even harder than normal and have been shown to slightly improve your mental health.
Chicken, eggs, beef, and oily fish are great sources of Omega-3.
Typically, you’re taught to avoid cholesterol, but not all cholesterol is bad.
Your brain needs dietary cholesterol in order to form the cells that it uses to communicate with the rest of your body.
You can find dietary cholesterol in egg yolks and dairy products.
Fats are another type of nutrient that is misunderstood.
Monounsaturated fats improve your memory, making it easier to recall information for your homework assignment.
Avocados and nuts are filled with monounsaturated fats.
Water is crucial to every single part of your life, including your education.
Your brain is 73% water, which means your body needs plenty of it to function.
Make sure to keep a glass of water with you while you are studying.
2. Too Little Sleep
Nobody feels their best after a rough night of sleep, but a frequent lack of proper sleep has disastrous effects on your ability to think straight or function.
Although some may believe that sleep isn’t as necessary as doctors and teachers make it out to be, your doctors and teachers are right about this fact.
Sleep contributes to how well you can focus and how well you can remember things, which are the two things that you need to do to get your homework done.
Without sleep, students are prone to having a hard time creating thoughts, remembering details, and staying focused.
Your brain takes in information in three parts: acquisition, consolidation, and recall.
The acquisition of information is when it is introduced to you.
The consolidation of information is how well it holds in your mind once it has been taught.
Recall refers to how well you can remember the information that you learned.
Without proper sleep, you will not be able to take information as well, which affects the acquisition step.
Information that isn’t acquired efficiently won’t consolidate in your mind, which makes it nearly impossible to recall accurately.
If you notice that you’re having a hard time remembering things or having a hard time focusing, try going to sleep earlier than you normally do.
It can be difficult for students to go to sleep early because many students feel that after school is the only time they have available to do what they want to do.
However, you will need to give up at least a couple of extra hours during the school week in order to help you focus and remember things better.
If you’ve tried going to sleep earlier and find that you just lie awake instead, speak with your doctor.
3. Trying To Multitask
Multitasking is a skill that everyone should learn, but that doesn’t mean that it needs to be used all of the time.
When doing mentally strenuous work, it is best to avoid doing any type of multitasking.
Other tasks will only be a distraction to you.
In the modern age, people are wired to constantly multitask, whether they know it or not.
Many people feel that they can’t get things done unless they’re multitasking.
In those situations, you may want to speak to a doctor about why you need as much stimulation as you do.
You may be multitasking without even noticing it.
Trying to keep up with group chats and working on homework assignments will divide your attention, making it harder to focus on one thing or another.
The more that you try to do at once, the more likely you are to make mistakes.
Watching a show and working on homework could cause you to cross the two things and write down something you didn’t mean to write.
When you multitask, you put more pressure on your brain to run more functions at once.
This can lead to you getting anxious.
An increase in anxiety means a decrease in emotional control.
Multitasking will cause your brain to tire itself faster than focusing on a single task.
You’ll also want to avoid trying to have conversations while working on your homework, even if you never have to look away from the screen.
Talking and listening to what the other person has to say is taking away from your brain’s ability to recall information it has learned in the past.
4. Mental Health
Mental health can have a greater effect on your life than many physical ailments.
Your brain is the organ that you use to perceive the world.
When your brain isn’t working right, you’re not going to be as effective or efficient.
It doesn’t take much time for your mental health to get the best of you.
As soon as you believe you may be having mental health problems, you will want to speak with a counselor, therapist, doctor, teacher, or another trustworthy adult in your life.
There are a few mental health problems that could be causing you to have a difficult time focusing.
Some of the most common mental health problems that cause people to have shorter attention spans are ADHD and depression.
ADHD is the most common neurodevelopmental disorder that can develop during early childhood.
If you notice that you are incredibly forgettable, lose things often, and are frequently daydreaming, you may have ADHD.
No one knows for certain what causes ADHD, but scientists are currently looking into potential causes such as brain injury, the use of alcohol or tobacco during pregnancy, premature births, and low birth weight.
Depression is more than a deep sadness or teenage blues.
It is a mental health disorder that can impair your attention span and your ability to recall information.
This is due to a low amount of serotonin or dopamine in your brain.
Depression also reduces your cognitive flexibility, which means you have a harder time with change.
It also damages your executive functioning which is responsible for guiding your brain through all the steps in a process, even if you’ve done it countless times before.
Don’t underestimate the ability of a mental health disorder to disrupt your ability to think and function.
5. No Passion About The Subject
Passion can play a massive role in your ability to get things done.
You may notice that some subjects of homework are easier for you to get through than others.
This is because you may like one subject more than another.
Some students aren’t academics at heart, which often results in them having lower grades despite being just as bright as some of the top students in their class.
The key is to muster up enough passion or motivation to get yourself through your assignment.
You will want to take note of what you like and dislike about school, even if they’re small aspects of school like working outside or preferring quiet spaces.
This will help you find a career that you can be passionate about and help you avoid jobs that are everything you hate.
Unlike being able to choose what job you’re going to take, you can’t always choose the type of homework you have to do either.
That’s why you may want to evaluate the order in which you do your homework.
If you have homework in multiple subjects, start with the ones that you don’t like or have a harder time with.
This gives you more time to patiently go through your notes or figure out what you don’t understand.
By starting with the harder homework, you will breeze through the rest of your homework because it won’t be nearly as hard in comparison to what you were just doing.
6. Inability To Prioritize
Being able to properly prioritize what you need to do in the short-term and long-term is a skill that takes many students until their final years of education to master, and some never do.
Students who are able to prioritize their duties will experience vastly less stress.
Prioritizing doesn’t mean being able to do everything that you want to do in a day, but rather, choosing the right activities to fill your day.
You may find that you have to put your education above your hobbies and occasional time with loved ones, but it’s what’s best for you and your future.
When you get better at prioritizing, you may find rare situations where you need to have a hobby or time with a loved one above your education.
These moments aren’t often, but they may be what you need when you feel like you’re running out of stream or self-care.
7. Poor Time Management Skills
As you get better at prioritizing, you will learn the crucial lesson of the importance of time management skills.
The sooner you learn this lesson, the more likely you’ll get through your educational career without major mistakes.
When you don’t manage your time well, you might spend the hours that you had after school doing your homework mindlessly scrolling through social media instead.
After you’ve lost a couple of hours to your favorite platform, you may remember that you have a lot of homework to do.
This means that you have to rush through your homework, and the results will most likely be sloppy.
To avoid the lecture you’ll get for your sloppy work from your teacher, start doing your homework earlier to give yourself time to do better work.
The best time to do your homework is right after you get home because your brain will still be in learning mode.
The only thing you should do before your homework is have a light snack to help improve your brain function.
8. Physical Pain
You may not need to move many muscles in order to do your homework, but there are many pains that you don’t even have to move to trigger.
The more pain you’re in, the harder it is to focus.
If you ever feel pain that is distracting you from being able to do daily tasks, like homework or chores, you should tell your doctor, parents, or legal guardian.
Pain that keeps you from being able to function isn’t normal.
It doesn’t take much pain to be distracting.
There are few things harder than trying to write an essay while you also have a headache.
Throbbing pain, like headaches or toothaches, can be especially distracting.
If your pain is so bad that you are having a difficult time getting your homework done, contact your teacher to see if they can give you additional time to get the work done.
You may need a doctor’s note, but many teachers understand that not every student can go to the doctor over every bump and bruise.
When you’re trying to do a lot of homework and balance the rest of your life, it can be incredibly overwhelming.
The stress of trying to understand difficult concepts because you know you’re going to be graded on your ability to understand the topics is anxiety-inducing.
Students deal with a lot of things outside of school as well, such as trying to figure out what they want to do with their life, social development, family problems, and other life problems that many people go through.
Sometimes, all it takes is the wrong math question to send you into tears and almost have a total meltdown.
During these moments, try to remember not to let yourself get worked up.
It’s okay if you don’t understand a topic while you’re doing homework.
As long as you keep trying over a long time, you’ll eventually understand the topic enough to pass your class.
There is a lot of pressure to do the best and get perfect grades, but you also have to remember that you can’t be that good at everything.
10. Too Many Stimuli
Stimuli are anything that cause you to react, whether you notice the reaction or not.
Stimuli can include the temperature of a room, the texture of your clothes, flashing lights, or music playing in the background.
Your brain is picking up on each of these stimuli that your body is feeling.
To keep it focused on the task at hand, make yourself as comfortable as possible.
Put on some comfortable clothes, make sure you’re not too hot or too cold, and find somewhere to do your homework where there’s not a lot going on.
Don’t let your homework go unfinished just because you were distracted, and don’t fall into the habit of having unfinished work.
Your future depends on how well you are able to get things done, even if you don’t want to and would rather be doing something else.