Saturday, January 22, 2011

5 STUDY HABITS NO ONE TOLD ME ABOUT!

I was an average kid at school.

All right, who am I kidding, I was just about okay at school. My parents were happy that I got okay grades, my teachers were even happier that I never stayed back (Gosh, Thankfully), my school counselor was happy that I didn’t lose hope (was there any hope…) and I was just dazed when it came to academics. 

In college, things changed, I was suddenly a star student….now how did that happen. Well, first I chose not to study something I disliked (numbers) and certain habits which I had to change to get okay grades (it is tougher in college). Now everyone kept talking about stress management, note taking, effective study habits, concentration, and memory skills and so on. But no one told me about these things, things that actually made me STUDY. So here’s what got me studying in college:

  1. WINNING LOSING IS THE BEST MOTIVATION:  Everyone around me told to look up to the best student around. It never worked for me. I kept asking myself….am I happier with a C or do I slog myself to an A? Happier with the C was always the answer. Instead, look at those who get an F – they might be having problems, that might be bad luck but do you want to be there. Ask yourself this, do you want to get an F and live under the pressure or work a little now and get the desired B? Will get you running to your books right away!

  1. GET THE BEST STATIONERY BEFOREHAND: Whenever I sat down to study, my pencil was a shade too light or dark. My pen didn’t work and if it did work (Voila…!) the color wasn’t suiting my mood. The stationery always got the better of me. So, the next time I decide to study, I go for stationery shopping first, it always works!

  1. TIE UP YOUR HAIR: Very irrelevant you might say, but very valid…believe me! As a kid, I always had short hair and when I sat down to study, I managed to find faults with it. I would tug on it, pull on my fringes, keep tying and untying…just play with it (unknowingly) and finally realize that I should wash my hair (right now!). It had to stop…in college I had longer hair, tied it up real nerdy before I had to study. Oh hair, I don’t bother you, you don’t bother me.

  1. NEVER, EVER GLANCE AT THE TV / MOVIE SCHEDULE: This is valid for the exam season. Otherwise, go watch TV, no hassles. During exams, there is an evil conspiracy by the broadcasters to air my favorite movie / shows / sitcoms and during favorable hours. And the airing will exactly overlap my study regime. In college, during exams I took a vow not to glance into the TV schedule listing. It works!


  1. KEEP UPDATING YOURSELF WITH THE CLASSROOM “NERD”: Call up your best friend (who is most likely to be as lazy as you) and ask them how much they finished studying and this is how the conversation will most likely go…only 2 Chapters out of 10…Oh that’s sad…you know I finished like 4 chapters….you are in deep *beep*… go study quick….end of conversation. Then this is the conversation you have with yourself….4 chapters…twice as much...I am way ahead…this is easy….I have plenty of time….let’s watch TV….end of studying. What have you done? Not only have you busted your friend’s motivation, you have also let go of yours. So what did I do…called up the certified class “nerd” and this is how the conversation went…so you finished all the chapters…Oh so you are like revising now….ya I know but we still have 2 more days right…what do you mean ONLY 2 days…ok, I got to go….I am in deep *beep*. Then the conversation with yourself will be like this….Oh God…nerdy is revising, I am still on chapter 4…what the *beep*, I have to study. This will definitely get you back to your books!
So how are you planning to get back to your books?

35 comments:

Neil Street said...

Great post! I struggled through school/college in much the same way! My best tip on how to study successfully -- work hard at finding something you are passionate about to study. If you are lucky enough to find it, study will be more fun than work.

Rosanne Dingli said...

Hajra, I'm sending a link to this post to each of my teenage children. The hair one is so cool.

Hajra said...

@ Neil - Thanks a lot! Yes, being passionate about what you are doing is the quite the way to make all things work!

@ Rosanne - awww...Thanks so much...I hope it helps them just as much! Thank you!! :)

suman said...

Wow great girl..well written..i should send it to my students too ;)

Hajra said...

@ Suman - I will be more than glad if you did that and even more if it "helped" them! Thanks a lot!

Ankita said...

Hehe, i remember those phone calls well :-D
i think this post will definitely help students want to study.i request all the teachers and parents who come accross this to pls share it with the kids.Hajra,your psychology background gives u a definite edge along with your insightful nature to probe a problem and come out with unusual yet effective solutions. Great going!

lilypond said...

You cracked me up with the beep!! Ok, I have just tied my hair back, bought a new pencil and am now hell bound on studying Italian...as soon as I finish this comment that is.'BEEP'

Penelope said...

Some of your advice works for people of all ages such as look at the losers vs. and not just the winners, don't look at movie/TV schedules in exam (or high pressure) times, and update yourself with the classroom (business) nerd. I'm going to share your advice. You're on a very good track. Keep up the good work!

sadia said...

hey i thot dis happnd only wid me....esp the hair thing and the airing of the best shows n movies during xams (i used to peep in evry 15 min to see wats goin on)..man how i used to study so reluctantly..neways vry well writtn strikes a chord with all d students n vry informative too...enjoyd reading it

Hajra said...

@ Inka - Thanks so much! The beep was something that "came" just a minute before posting this...Good Luck studying Italian...tell me how that goes *beep*!!!

@ Penelope - Thanks a lot. I hope it helps all ages!

@ Sadia - You are not alone! Thanks a lot for your comment!

cath said...

I love the stationery comment...I developed a serious pen/pencil fetish during nursing school, and by the time I finished grad school I had become obsessed with finding the perfect writing implement! I totally understand your blog, even though it has been years since I had to put my nose to the grindstone! Good Luck!
~cath

Hajra said...

@ Cathy - Thanks, I have had an "obsession" with the right pen/pencil/eraser for a long time now. Somehow the right shade of blue matters a lot! Thanks!

Hajra said...

@ Ankita - I am so sorry, I almost missed your comment. Psychology always tells us that every person in unique and they have unique problem and perspectives! But this is something which I hope everyone connects with! Thanks a lot sweetie...you are and always will be a valuable reader!
Oh yes, and those phone calls....I miss Ima, she always seemed way ahead of us (Economics..remember!!)

Rahil Ahmed said...

First of all losing is the best motivation any day.. and also i must add that getting proper sleep along with studies is important too.. there's no point plastering your eyelids to your face and end up just thinking about your bed.. haha..
and I too feel that there's some conspiracy against me by the tv channels.. LOL!

P.S. - people you have to know that hajra was doing more than average in school.. :)

Hajra said...

@ Rahil - Sleep is so important, however I feel like I am deprived of sleep during exam time!

No, I was just average...friends will say anything to make you feel good!
Thanks a lot!

Josie said...

Hajra,
Some good advice. I especially have to ignore the tv guide etc or you inevitably find something that is crucial to watch.

amrita said...

superb as alwaz,especially d hair 1,n d stationery...bt i wl alwaz end up calling my bst frd,n nt a nerd im sure of it....n ur definitely puttiny psy. in application....

Hajra said...

@ Josie - Thanks a lot. During exams....something "appealing" always had to be on TV...had to ignore it then!

@ Amrita - Luckily my best friend was the college "nerd"....You!!

Facing50Blog.com said...

Hello Hajra!
I may be old but I remember those days well. Even when I decided to learn Japanese a few years ago I found out that studying doesn't get easier with age either. I still had to check in with the class 'nerd' to motivate myself.
Actually these are brilliant tips...wish I'd read them when I was studying for my degree - I might have done better than average.
I dropped by after you left that really nice comment on my blog. It's great here. It's so nice that I've signed up to be your latest follower...it'll bring some youthful perspective into my life.
Lovely to 'meet you'
Warm wishes
Carol

Hajra said...

Hi Carol
So kind of you to stop by. for me studying is getting worse with age, I think it is the laziness factor that stays with me all throughout!
Thanks a lot. It was nice "meeting" you too..hoping to "stay in touch"!

PL@Yb0y said...

i agree with you, tv broadcasters always air your favorite shows n movies during exams

Hajra said...

@ Dilawer - Lol! Yes that seems to be the case always..

Brenda Bernstein said...

Love the pic of the nerdy girl! And I'm so impressed you spelled "stationery" correctly :-)

As a business owner, I have made sure not to own a TV. Still good advice after college to make sure you get more creative things done and truly spend time with people in healthful ways.

James Davenport said...

I think I must have been one of the "nerds" in school. Funny, I never felt like one...

Boschii said...

GOOD GRIEF!!!! WHERE WAS THIS VALUABLE ADVICE ## YEARS AGO????

This is hysterical but so very valuable....Hmmm....is making me rethink that I should go back to school now...and do it all over again...this time I will be empowered to succeed!

Hajra said...

@ Brenda - I am so in love with nerdy girl pic too...and lol!! I knew it...I knew the "essay expert" would be at work so I made sure I got the spellings right! The stationary - stationery lesson was a very valuable one when I was in 10th grade (I know...too late!)

Thanks a lot!

Hajra said...

@ James - ask your friends, they might be able to confirm / deny the notion! Thanks a lot for stopping by!

@ Boschii - Hysterical is the best compliment ever and no...I am not being sarcastic :) And ## years ago I was too busy struggling with studies that I didn't write then! Thanks a lot!

saumya said...

loved d stationery comment.. i still stick to it at wrk.. waste an hour looking for perfect tools to work with...

MJ said...

Thanks for the tips. I've passed them onto my teenagers who have instantly disregarded them- coz that's what teens do with wise + helpful advice.

Hajra said...

@ Saumya - Maybe the next post I could talk about 5 work habits!! Thanks!

@ MJ - Never mind, ten years later you could tell them ..."I told you so" and be the quintessential parent!! Or maybe they have their own unique study habits which work for them! Thanks anyways!

rashidfaridi said...

One of the Great Posts I have read.

Heather Fonseca said...

Another good one to try is to study with an academic friend. Meet at the library and have coffee after.

Be sure to take healthy breaks! A walk will pep you up much more than coffee.

Good luck studying! Now I have to take your advice and get back to work myself.


Love,
Heather 
http://heathersdesignblog.com/

sweepyjean said...

These tips are awesome. I think you are absolutely right, especially the part about the stationary! ;-)

Dennis Salvatier said...

Nice blog you have here, Hajra. You should think about branding it. Maybe monetizing. There's valuable info here.

Hajra said...

@ Rashid - Thanks a lot!

@ Heather - Thanks a lot...yes, a walk always makes one feel fresh and breaks the monotony!

@ Jean - Thanks a lot :)

@ Dennis - I have Google Adsense..what are other ways I could monetize..any suggestions?