Stop wasting time

A student studying

Listen to the conversation about how to study better and do the exercises to practise and improve your listening skills.


Do the preparation exercise before you listen. Then do the other exercises to check your understanding.

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Tom: I don't know what to do. I start off studying but I always end up doing something else.

Mum: I'll help you but please listen to me.

Tom: Of course! Go on!

Mum: Now first, you need to take away all of the things that stop you working.

Tom: What do you mean?

Mum: First, turn off your music. Music doesn't help you study.

Tom: OK. No music.

Mum: And put the dog outside!

Tom: What?

Mum: Well, every time the dog goes into your room, you stop studying to pat it. Spot stops you working!

Tom: OK. Bye, Spot!

Mum: Have an apple and a glass of water on your desk before you start. Here you are.

Tom: Why?

Mum: Because then you don't need to go to the kitchen for something to eat or drink.

Tom: OK.

Mum: Turn off your phone.

Tom: No way!

Mum: Yes. It stops you working. If you turn it off, it's easier to concentrate. You can read your messages later.

Tom: OK, but I can't turn off the internet on my computer. I need it to look up information.

Mum: OK, but you can turn off your instant messages.

Tom: I know! Mum?

Mum: Yes?

Tom: Thanks.


What things stop you from working? What can you do to study better?

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Average: 3.2 (28 votes)
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Submitted by Engeveryjoy on Wed, 12/06/2023 - 13:55

my dog can stop my studying. If she hears noise, she starts barking. I can”t concentrate. I think I should put my dog out the room.

Submitted by English Student on Mon, 05/06/2024 - 23:04

in my case, the things outside the window distract when I am studying

In reply to by Engeveryjoy

Submitted by catpuccinoxi on Mon, 07/10/2023 - 20:47

My main enemy when it comes to studying is primarily my thoughts. Sometimes, it's difficult for me to clear my mind and focus, so I can't help but look at my phone and get easily distracted by social media. I believe the best thing I can do is to turn off my phone and implement all the recommendations we just heard!

Submitted by pomelo on Fri, 01/27/2023 - 07:04

Noise and my phone stop me working

Submitted by ahgima099 on Wed, 09/14/2022 - 14:06

Noise and my phone stop me working. So, I always study in quiet place and turn off my phone.

Submitted by Turtle08 on Sun, 08/28/2022 - 13:59

I share my room with my brother, and for me it's more difficult to study when he studies with his friends, because they talk. I could study in another room or ask him to do it instead.

Submitted by cherry00 on Fri, 07/22/2022 - 13:50

I think my phone and the TV stop me from working. When I study I turn off my phone and the television, so I can study better.

Submitted by Baldbanana on Tue, 07/05/2022 - 10:24

Usually my phone stops me from working and sometimes laziness stops me too. I can sleep more and have a good mood to study better.
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Submitted by FlowerQueen on Fri, 06/03/2022 - 12:02

Hi My little brother stops me from studying, because we learn in the same room (We don't have desks in our rooms) and he often wants to play something with me. When I learn with someone else, it's easier for me. For example I learn with my mum or my best friend. FlowerQueen~♡

Submitted by goksu on Wed, 06/01/2022 - 08:06

you should stay away from the things that prevent you from studying

Submitted by Kisell on Fri, 04/29/2022 - 15:06

I went to study: I should find a guiet place.

Submitted by Ira1321 on Sun, 01/23/2022 - 18:59

When I work my phone distructs me doing my works.To be better at studying you should focus on your studies and dont distruct by various things.
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Submitted by Tato_Learner22 on Fri, 10/29/2021 - 00:25

When I'm studying, I always put a lot of attention, before that I have some sweets or chocolate on my desk because eating while you study helps you concetrate, then I turn off the TV and music and the last one I go my bedroom and close the door.
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Submitted by InEnglishPlease on Wed, 10/20/2021 - 09:25

This is an amazing way to learn listening in English, it helps me so much! And in this lesson are tips to study. Great!

Submitted by hermione123 on Sat, 10/16/2021 - 06:34

Nothing actually. I can study well in any condition. It depends on how much committed i am. Mostly i'm not that committed, so i get distracted. :D

Submitted by Adri_T5 on Fri, 10/15/2021 - 02:36

I know it is really difficult to concentrate on something, even though you know that you have to do it, somehow you end wasting time, those recommendations are really helpful whenever you need to study or concentrate on something. Excellent recommendations.

Submitted by Grya3873 on Wed, 08/18/2021 - 12:59

Things that prevent me from working it’s : My parents, My phone and my stomach. To solve these distractions, simply put yourself in a quiet corner with no one around, put the phone across the room or turn it off and get something to eat to be quiet.

Submitted by ENDEOVAR on Wed, 01/27/2021 - 13:05

I would say that almost everything around me stop me from focusing on lessons.I don't know why but ı think ı don't focus on for that reasons. These such as the friends ,the housework, the noise and so on. At times like this ı do these - First ı do a plan and . I write necessary things and ı organize my day -I turn off my phone. I use my phone for only impotant things - ı wake up early because I feel happy when ı start early day. - I take away distracting things from desk because ı focus on only lesson. I want to don't focus on something else when ı study -I listen to music. I comfort when ıisten to music. I recommend everybody listening to music when ı such time -I remember my targets. I think of my in the future. I wan to better future for myself
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Submitted by Kostantinus on Tue, 01/12/2021 - 10:41

I would say that home pet, mobile phone's signals, some music stop me concentrate. I put it all away before I start studing.

Submitted by Nooname on Mon, 01/11/2021 - 17:05

I think that my phone stops me from studying,for starting to study i put my phone and any other mobile devices away
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Submitted by rafaelyeshua on Sun, 12/20/2020 - 17:13

i don't know why but almost everything around me unfocuse me, i use piano music for studying, it's so relaxing

Submitted by altair28 on Tue, 10/20/2020 - 03:38

The phone aaaallways stop me for when im studyng and i try to put some relaxing music to get focus on my homework.
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Submitted by Xuka on Wed, 08/19/2020 - 18:57

A lot of things stop me from working, such as the noise, the barking dog, my sleepiness, my phone, mp3, game console, and so on. Thus, I have some useful tips to study better, such as: - I always organize my study space in a quiet room with all the necessary items so as not to interrupt the learning process. - I turn off my phone notifications or blocking Facebook (temporarily) on my computer so I can concentrate on the homework tasks at hand. - I use flow charts and diagrams to write down everything I already know about a topic - and then highlight where the gaps lie. Next, I study my material to accomplish the topic. - I always study for one hour. Then I have a break for five minutes. I like both eating some snacks and listening to my favorite song, then drink a glass of water. - Finally, remember that a little study every day is much better than a lot of studying all at once. So, I just take 2 hours for my self-study each day.
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Submitted by turkishphoenixx on Sun, 08/02/2020 - 16:39

Everything makes me unfocused while I'm studying. And i don't know how can i solve this problem.

Submitted by Nadeem20 on Tue, 07/21/2020 - 12:04

Mobile phone is the most thing that stop me from working thing i do for better studying : first i put my mobile phone out of my room , listening to quite music with a low volume and i put fruit or juice on my desk Thanks

Submitted by jenn on Mon, 06/22/2020 - 22:01

the things stop me working is listen to music, because i am always singing and i can't cocentrate on studies, so i try to dont listen music and i love drink some cooffee to be more relaxed
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Submitted by DIGIOTANIMES on Tue, 06/09/2020 - 18:14

What prevents me from working is that from my birth I have an alleged mental illness and companies see that medical history and then they do not accept me. and to study better I don't listen to music, non-virtual classroom study since it is not the same and lends itself to distractions, not to think about other things while studying not to listen to television or radio but to be in a place where there is no noise to concentrate

Submitted by anna_v3r on Thu, 06/04/2020 - 09:25

The only thing that stops me to study well is my mobile phone, so I turn it off when I study and I do my homework.

Submitted by Rurru27 on Tue, 05/26/2020 - 08:33

I'm not distracted at all

Submitted by giogiomas on Fri, 05/15/2020 - 14:55

When I do my homeworks I can't be concentrate if my mobile phone is on

Submitted by Matteo on Fri, 05/15/2020 - 14:53

Probably anuthing can distract me so i have to focus only on my work and do it as good as i can

Submitted by mmatildepontoni04 on Fri, 05/15/2020 - 11:06

My phone distracts me during studying so to focus better on homework I turn it off

Submitted by nimdini on Wed, 05/13/2020 - 05:11

Mobile phones stop working.But I can study hard from reading books.

Submitted by bszek on Thu, 04/16/2020 - 09:26

The messages and games stop me from working. I turn on the "focus mode" on my phone, and this block my messages, games, and other apps.

Submitted by hegedusdani7a on Wed, 04/15/2020 - 06:56

I like to study in silence because loud noises disturb me. That's when I go into my room and close the door.

Submitted by vivo06 on Mon, 04/13/2020 - 11:01

The mobile stops the working. If my friends send me messages, i would like to see them. I have to leave my mobile outside my room.

Submitted by EnderWolf on Fri, 04/10/2020 - 08:47

I should put away my phone, and pay attention to the work. I can also study better when I listen to music! Also, I cannot concentrate when my birds aren't in the room, because I will worry about them.

Submitted by _16lx on Mon, 04/06/2020 - 18:52

that things stop me from working or studying its ' music , my phone , '

Submitted by LFernandoLFilete on Fri, 03/27/2020 - 03:12

When I study I prefer not to listen to music or use my phone to concentrate. Also, I like to study at a table because I have more space to put my books. I prefer to study at night because silence is better and i can think.

Submitted by ServerMateYT321 on Wed, 03/18/2020 - 17:34

i can study better if i stop being lazy
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Submitted by Windflower42 on Thu, 02/20/2020 - 16:33

My cellphone distract me a lot, but at the same time I need it to study, because I take information from the internet. To study better I should turn down the volume of youtube. :'(

Submitted by Maruevadasha on Fri, 01/24/2020 - 17:44

All over the world students could be distracted from their study. As for me, a smart phone, smart TV, my little brother who asks to play with him and my favourite cat distracts my attention from my work. Also l look aside when my friends call me for a walk. In my opinion, to begin study as well as possible you should follow the rules. Firstly you need to have a desire to work or study. It should be quite in the room where you are working. The phone and TV must be turned off. Fresh air keeps you awake so you will work more productively. And the main rule: don't begin to play with my kitten. It's very distractind and relaxing. Finally, if you follow all these rules, then you will start to work more effectively.

Submitted by Rockie on Fri, 12/06/2019 - 16:23

In our modern reality, there are many factors that can distract us from our studies. As for me, mobile messages, random thoughts, talks of the people around, some noise made by home animals stop you from working. In my opinion, the only way to deal with these distractors is to limit their influence on your attention in the best possible way. First of all, you need to have a desire to work or study. To help you I have collected some interesting advice for developing concentration. So here they are: 1) The most distracting things are our gadgets. You should minimize their use while you're working. If you need some Internet resources to find information, try to limit their list according to your preferences. 2) Use the timer to determine your working time. After the time runs out, you can get a little break for walking or doing some physical exercises. 3) Classic music is a good attention stabilizer. Such music affects our brain in a relaxing way providing an opportunity to concentrate on the current task. Don’t forget to control the volume level! 4) Try not to leave your workspace until finishing the current job. Prepare some food and water before you start your work. 5) Use a rewarding system. Make yourself some small surprises after every successful task performance. This step will give you some additional motivation to do your best at another time. The less distracted you are, the better prize you should have. 6) In the morning your productivity can be much better. At this time of day, a lot of information has not yet "entered" your brain, so you can study and not get distracted by random thoughts.

Submitted by hermione123 on Tue, 08/10/2021 - 07:30

agree with you for number 5. i tried to use rewarding system. i study and as a reward i gave myself few minutes in front of tv every 20 minutes studying. it didn't work though. at first it worked, then hours later, i ended up watching tv and didn't get my materials. maybe the reward shouldn't be watching tv or checking my phone or anything to do with gadgets. and number 6 actually works so well to me. i never study much on the day before exam, i just flip trough pages, but in the morning i revise it again.

In reply to by Rockie

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Submitted by Shashi on Wed, 10/30/2019 - 12:18

I think mobile phone, music, T.V and radio stop me from working. First, to start work , I put my pet outside. Next I Have something to eat and drink on my table. Finally I turn off my massages of the phone.
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Submitted by Stone on Sat, 08/17/2019 - 14:21

When i study i have to put the remote control away ! :) ok start learning now without tv

Submitted by Thu on Tue, 07/02/2019 - 10:32

The TV, of course, my favourite joy is watching TV. The TV has sounds, vivid images, cute characters,...and I can't stop myself. I'll turn off the TV, and I need a boring sound to make my lesson more interesting.

Submitted by levansonqs on Sat, 06/29/2019 - 02:23

in my case i will clean my desk. and waitting my wife sleep i will study cause she alway make me can't focus on lesson.

Submitted by editor_rachael on Sat, 06/29/2019 - 17:25

Hi levansonqs,


Thanks for your comments on LearnEnglish Teens. This website is specially for teenagers aged 13-17 years old but it sounds like you are older than that. You are welcome to keep on using LearnEnglish Teens but if you are over 17, please do NOT post any more comments as we must keep this strictly for teenagers to interact with each other. 


LearnEnglish Teens team

In reply to by levansonqs

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Submitted by Clara on Sun, 02/10/2019 - 16:27

I guess that If I want to study : 1.I should avoid from loud sounds; 2.I should find a quiet place; 3.I shouldn't listen to music.
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