Making better use of your free time

By Jeny Varughese
October 27, 2010

Many of us feel like we have too much time on our hands sometimes but don’t know how to use it effectively. Also, we sometimes struggle to pay attention in class not knowing why. These are all a result of not having the motivational drive to do well in school.

There are several easy steps that you can take to have the drive to do something and to want to succeed in life.

1. Support System: Having a good support system is key. At times you may find everything in life to be difficult and hard to handle. It’s very beneficial to surround yourself with people who understand you and can encourage rather than discouraging you with your decisions.

2. Inspiration: Inspiration comes in different forms. For some, it comes from reading books, listening to music and for others it might come from a role model. It can also come from our religious beliefs and practices.

3. Set realistic goals: The key to setting goals is to have realistic goals. Set goals for you to accomplish each day. The best way to do this is to make up a study schedule and follow that so you can stay on track.

4. Prioritize: Prioritizing can be hard to do sometimes, but it is an important step in being successful. Ask yourself what is the most important thing in your life and then act accordingly. Always weigh your options and pick the best possible task that is beneficial to your future.

5. Speak up in class: The main mistake everyone makes is to shy away in class. If you don’t understand something in class, it’s always better to ask questions. Don’t shy away thinking that it’s a stupid question because someone else might have the same question.

6. Ask for help: If you find you don’t understand something there are ways to get help. Resources such as learning centers and tutoring are available to be taken advantage of. Another option is to meet with your teacher and talk about the problems you might be having and figure out a way to solve the issue.

7. Study Habits: Everyone learns in different ways. Having good note-taking skills goes a long way when it comes to studying. Also, find the style that best suites you. Some people understand better visually others are auditory learners. Once you find how you learn best continue using that skill to study.

8. Distraction: If you know what distracts you it’s best to avoid those situations. When you sit down to study, find a quiet and peaceful place so you can focus on your task. Keep personal problems and school separate, don’t let one affect the other.

9. Self -Confidence: Having confidence in yourself is a positive attitude. We have to believe in ourselves and our abilities. When you are confident in your abilities you are less likely to procrastinate.

10. Reward: Rather than taking long breaks, take short 10-minute breaks in between assignments. Taking short breaks can be rewarding especially when you work hard to accomplish something. When you finish a task take a few minutes for yourself before moving on to the next thing.

The most important thing to remember is that no matter what your situation is; always stay positive and strive to do better each day.

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Jeny Varughese

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