My first advice to anyone who falls asleep while reading is, ‘Oga, close that book
and go and sleep.’ However, I know that there are times when we need to power
through the sleepy feeling and study like our lives depend on it, especially because
sometimes, our lives seem to depend on the exams that we take.
So, to help you power through your studies, even when you feel sleepy, I will share
5 tips with you that can help you keep awake while reading.
- Read aloud while standing:
This is the oldest trick in the book; it should buy you, at least, an additional 30
minutes of reading time. It works because movement is a well-known way of
renewing one’s energy and it improves one’s chances of remembering what they
have studied. So, simply find a comfortable space where you can pace back and
forth; then, read aloud to yourself as you walk to and fro.
- Eat and stay hydrated:
Hunger, unlike movement, is a demotivator. No hungry man wants to read. So, if you
are sleepy, consider getting a quick snack to munch on while studying. I have found
that groundnuts and cookies help me study well. What snack is it for you? You
should also make sure that you are well hydrated. A paper published by the US
National Library of Medicine in 2010 explains that dehydration has negative
effects on brain function; hence, staying hydrated should also help you remember
what you have read.
- Stay in a well-lit room:
It’s super easy to fall asleep in a dark room. As a matter of fact, for most people,
darkness sets the tone for a good sleep. Knowing this, you should stay away from
dark rooms while reading; instead, embrace well-lit rooms. Also, it is important that
the room is well lit, so as to help you read without straining your eyes. The less you
have to stress about while reading, the easier it is for you to concentrate and
understand what you read.
- Study actively:
It’s easy to fall asleep when you read passively. I mean, picture it: reading passively
about maps and the Earth from your geography textbook; super boring, right? But,
if you take notes as you read; conceptualize the different maps, lands, and water
bodies; and carry out practice exercises as you read; then, it starts to seem a lot
- Study with friends:
This is another hack to reading without falling asleep. Join your friends for a group
study. In your group study, you can take turns reading, and explaining what you’ve
learned to the group. You could also carry out mock quizzes and tests to evaluate
There you have it! 5 tips to help you keep awake while reading. Anyway, if all of
these fail, then, my friend, sleep abeg! When you are awake, you can continue
studying. After all, ‘na who dey alive dey read book.’
Do you have other techniques that help you study while you are sleepy? If yes, let
us know by leaving a comment in the box below, or shooting us an email via this