How to Read More

Lacking motivation to read more? This tip might help… :)

Or you could learn to speed read!
Reading Motivation

NOT staying in school is not a (financial) option

As college graduates take to the street, searching for the first jobs of their careers, many are unsure if it was worth it.

Recent statistics reveal college grads made 98% more an hour on average than people without a degree in 2013, which is up from 89% in 2008 and 64% in the early ’80s.

But since the numbers are based on averages, we need to look at the details to see there are big differences in experience among individuals within groups of both graduates and non-graduates.

There is no question the pay gap between the college educated and everyone else is getting bigger.

It’s also true that the unemployment rate for college graduates right now, is remarkably low. For college grads between ages 25 and 34, the unemployment rate is currently around 3%!

Here is the paradox:

College grads are not making headway;
instead non-graduates are losing ground.

The income paid to college grads, on average, has remained flat,
but the wages of non-graduates have fallen.

To look at it a different way, college graduates are now taking jobs away from non-graduates. This reality is reflected in several recent studies and in U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data. According to The Center for College Affordability and Productivity, in 2008 roughly 38% of working college graduates were in positions that didn’t require a degree. By 2013, that number had increased to 48%.

Not every Starbucks barista is a college graduate, but many of them are.

So what happens to you if you are a non-graduate who didn’t get that job?

It’s unlikely you will be moving up in the corporate world, skipping over all those college graduates to take higher-paying positions above them.

Don’t blame employers for this. If an open position doesn’t require a college degree, but 50 out of 200 applicants have a degree, why wouldn’t they choose a college graduate?

That’s why you need to STAY IN SCHOOL and graduate, your financial future depends on it.

No one said it was fair, it’s just the way it is.

Of course if you have a college degree – YOU WANT THIS ADVANTAGE over non-graduates – don’t you?!?!

Note Taking – how important is it?

The weakest ink is stronger that the strongest memory.

As The Exponential Growth Strategist, I present to audiences around the world. I reveal the most powerful and valuable insights for people who want to achieve extra-ordinary results. People pay hundreds or thousands of dollars to hear me speak and deliver my content. Content I have gathered and collected over the past 20+ years, information extracted from more than 1,000 books and 3,000 academic articles. Knowledge acquired via 5 university degrees…

And the thing that surprises me the most is that the vast majority of attendees do not take notes – the EXPECT to remember what I have said.

I can make a list of the 4 Keys To Success and within 10 minutes ask the audience to repeat them to me and THE ONLY ONES WHO CAN are the ones who took notes. How do the others ever expect to remember it the day after or a week later?

It baffles me.

Students of course take notes in class – BECAUSE they want to know what will be on the exam, but they usually don’t take them effectively – that’s why if you want to take the BEST notes possible, you need to switch to MindMapping To Get The Best Grades With The Least Amount Of Effort.

Note Taking, Student Notes, Class Notes, Lecture Notes

Thank you to John Weiss of Keymetric Business Solutions for mentioning this quote during my Blogging For Small Business Workshop, in Corona, California. An event sponsored by Allegra Corona and attended by VIP Mastermind Club Members.

How observant do you think you are? Take this quick visual test

We all think we’re observant, but you’d be surprised at how many details we miss on our first glance…

Take this quick visual test and see if you’re as observant as you think you are… Good luck!

Read more, achieve more

Dr Seuss - Read More

“The more that you read,The more things you will know.The more that you learn,The more places you’ll go.”

Meditate to get better grades

child-meditatingI have blogged about using a floatation tank to improve your grades

A recent study further supports the view that meditation can improve your grades. If this is all too zen for you, that’s OK, enjoy the stress and strain of doing it ‘your way’ and let me know how that works out for you!

Ray Keefe of Successful Endeavours sent me this link – knowing that getting good grades leads to a much better career.

Listen to music to get better grades

Brain Activity - MusicChelsea Wilson, the Community Relations Manager for Washington University School of Law’s Online LLM program, informed me that @WashULaw recently created a new study aid in the form of a Spotify Playlist composed of late baroque era classical music. The playlist was created based on a Stanford study that discovered music engages the areas of the brain involved with paying attention, making predictions and updating the event in memory. Due to the phenomena, it is believed students and professionals alike would be well served to find ways to incorporate music into their lives, careers, and studies.

The playlist includes works by Vivaldi, Bach, Beethoven and Handel, among others (the style of music used in many studies). You click on the hyperlink to determine how you can listen to music to improve your grades. Click on this hyperlink for the Spotify playlist to improve your grades.

 

 

Gap Year Infographic

Gap year trips are very popular – this great infographic reveals some interesting stats… Enjoy!

An infographic by World First

Scrabble test

Research says 70% will select the SAME one word… Place your comments below and let’s see…
Scrabble - TEST

Estella’s Brilliant Bus

It always amazes me when someone applies the principles of antimimeticisomorphism to change the world, one person at a time. Estella Pyfrom is one such person. Have a look at the video to see how a simple school bus can change lives and ultimately destinies.

Working as a guidance counselor five years ago in Palm Beach County, Estella Pyfrom noticed that fewer students had access to a computer after school. The sluggish economy forced many families to prioritize their money and use it for more pressing needs.

“They needed food. They needed to pay their mortgage or their rent,” said Pyfrom, a former teacher. “Some of them lost their cars. So I knew it was a serious problem.”

Without a computer at home, or reliable transportation to get to a computer, Pyfrom feared that many of these students would get left behind. So she bought a bus, filled it with computers and brought technology to the kids.

Her mobile computer lab, Estella’s Brilliant Bus, has provided free, computer-based tutoring for thousands of students since 2011.

“If people don’t have some knowledge of technology, they’re going to be limited,” said Pyfrom, who retired in 2009 and used money from her savings to buy the bus. “It’s absolutely essential that they get involved technologically.”

“The digital divide is absolutely real,” said Pyfrom, 76. “And it didn’t just become a reality. It’s been there for years, and it’s getting bigger and more important.”

Pyfrom’s custom-designed bus is outfitted with 17 computer stations that are connected to high-speed Internet via satellite.

Emblazoned on its side are the words “Have Knowledge, Will Travel” and “We bring learning to you.” The bus travels to schools, shelters and community centers throughout the county.

“We serve children starting with age 3 all the way through senior citizens, based on what the needs are,” Pyfrom said. “We are bringing the learning and the technology to the neighborhoods. They all can benefit from that.”

Pyfrom and her army of volunteers hold regular classes and tutoring sessions about four days a week. They offer lessons in computer and Internet basics as well as reading, math or science classes that supplement what children are learning in school.

Sometimes, the bus simply serves as an open computer lab.

The rules on the bus are few and simple. Among them, gum and Facebook are not allowed. Pyfrom takes a no-nonsense approach to her mobile classroom. The custom-designed bus is outfitted with 17 computer stations that are connected to high-speed Internet via satellite.

The computers are loaded with educational software, providing interactive exercises that reinforce state-mandated curricula. Children receive their own account login and password, allowing them to continue their work from anywhere they can access the Internet. Users can only advance to the next level in a subject once they reach 90% proficiency in the current one, and the software allows Pyfrom to track their progress.

For older students, the bus brings GED and college preparatory assistance, anti-bullying and peer mediation classes, and student leadership training.

Pyfrom and her team provide about 8,000 hours of instruction to at least 500 children a year. She hopes the extra time will help bring students up to their grade level in reading, vocabulary, math, science and life skills.

Freddy and Brianna Rodriguez are two students benefiting from Pyfrom’s bus. Adopted from foster care, the siblings struggled with their grades when they entered junior high school.

“If I didn’t have the bus to come to, it’d be hard to get to a computer,” said Brianna, 13. “My grades have gotten better. The one-on-one time, it helped me.”

In working with the students, Pyfrom found that many parents didn’t know how to use a computer. Now her bus helps them, too.

“They’re learning right along with the kids,” Pyfrom said. “They don’t feel threatened, because what I say to them is, ‘If your 4-year-old can use a computer and click a mouse, so can you.’ ”

On the bus, adults can receive online banking tutorials, resume assistance and help searching for jobs and affordable housing.

Pyfrom’s efforts to help low-income families haven’t stopped with her bus. She also partnered with a community nonprofit to help provide meals to 3,000 residents each month. Through that work, she’s identified other ways her bus can help struggling neighbors build up technological proficiency necessary in the marketplace.

“We want to do what we can do in (each) neighborhood to make things better for all,” Pyfrom said. “We run into people who really want to better their lifestyles and are without help. We can help them make a big difference in their neighborhoods.”

To keep up the momentum of her efforts, Pyfrom has continued to pour her savings into maintaining and modifying her bus, so far spending about $1 million, she says.

An easy retirement is not something she aspires to.

“I’m not tired yet. And I don’t think I’m going to get tired,” she said. “I’m constantly charged up. I look at the faces of the children and I get energized.”

Pyfrom is determined to see her services expand throughout the state, even the country. She estimates she has enough savings to keep her bus running for another two years, but she hopes to find financial support before she runs out of money.

“I don’t think about what I’m not able to do or not going to be able to do,” she said. “I plan for the things that I think I’m going to do, need to do and want to do. And I think most of them are going to happen.

“We’ve got to keep rolling. We’re going to keep taking the service to the neighborhoods, and we are going to keep making a difference.”

Want to get involved? Check out the Estella’s Brilliant Bus website at www.estellasbrilliantbus.org and see how to help.

Tweets – they might prevent you from getting into college

If you read my other blogs, you know I am not a fan of social media, including Twitter and Facebook. It isn’t just because I think they are an incredible waste of time, but primarily because of the privacy violation aspects. You can about that on my Internet Marketing Blog and search for Privacy Pirates to learn more

Since this blog is focused on students, you should read this New York Times article on the cost of students tweeting indiscriminately. It could prevent you from getting into the college you want.

I always tell people – if you don’t want your tweet on the front page of tomorrow’s newspaper – don’t do it!

 

 

 

School Prank

I am NOT advocating you pull off a prank like this, but I have to admit, this took a lot of dedication and time and is worth sharing – it’s harmless and funny. IF you do pull off a prank like this, share it with me, but PLEASE – consider the environment and safety. There is NO fun in regretting something after-the-fact.
School Prank

Why you are “in school” is not the reason you might think…

Recently, George, an engineering student in Egypt, was sharing with me his challenges with school. He is making the mistake many students make, thinking they are in school to learn calculus, chemistry or any other “subject” matter.

The reality is that you are a student in high school and/or university for one reason only – to learn HOW to learn…

Depending on what you are studying, you will acquire and develop different learning (cognitive skills).

Engineers learn problem solving skills.
Lawyers learn interpretive skills.
Doctors learn diagnostic skills.

Once you realise this, your life as a student changes.

If you are in high school or university, you may INTEND to practice engineering, medicine or law, but the reality is that most students do something ELSE with the education following graduation. Once they launch their careers, they leverage their acquired skills to the extent they developed them WHILE they were students. The paradox is that unless you study like an engineer, doctor or lawyer, you simply cannot (as easily) acquire THOSE particular skills. You need to develop those skills WHILE you are a student…

When you study across disciplines as I have, social science, engineering, business and law, you realise that each skill set has its place in society.

The BIG question for you to ask yourself as a student is – “what skill(s) do you want to have once you graduate?”

MOTIVATION: Two types of students

There are two types of students:

Moving towards students – who want to get the top grades, look good, win a medal, make more money.

Moving away from students – who don’t want to fail, look fat, don’t want to lose a game and don’t want to lose the money they have.

Which one are you?

The reason I ask is because what works to MOTIVATE a MOVING TOWARDS student won’t work for a MOVING AWAY FROM student.

I don’t know you, but ask yourself: Are you focused more on NOT flunking an exam than acing it?

This is important to know because the ONLY thing that motivates a MOVING AWAY FROM student is FEAR OF LOSS, FAILING a course or exam.

They only pick up their books when they know they have to otherwise they will fail. They don’t exercise until their pants are too tight… They NEVER invest their money – they let it sit there in a bank account SAFE, not earning much interest.

Unfortunately, these students are rarely successful in the general sense of the word.

They can have a very “good” life, but the ultimate rewards escape them because they are not willing to do what it takes, they lack the HUNGER and DRIVE.

Fear overtakes them – all the time.

Reduction of RISK is different than achieving an ACCOMPLISHMENT.

Without the FEAR OF LOSS, there is no hunger, motivation.

With school, these students must FEAR that their lives will be DRAMATICALLY different without good grades or the right degree. Unfortunately they usually do the degree for the wrong reason (fear instead of desire) but if it’s the right degree, then it is still a good thing to get.

Getting a generic bachelor’s degree is no longer worth anything these days. It’s a necessity, but no longer a worthwhile investment – just like a high school diploma is worthless – UNLESS you don’t have one. It has become a necessity, but there is a HUGE cost to getting one if it’s not a valuable degree.

Kids today are mostly spoiled. They get driven to and from school, have iPhones, iPads, all the sports equipment they need, etc.. The ONLY problem with all that is they have NO HUNGER, NO DESIRE.

That being said, it’s a hard thing for young students to deal with. The real question is:

Are you happy to FOLLOW or
will you TAKE THE LEAD in your own life?

That is the question.

If you are female, once you read the book Lean In, you’ll have a better appreciation for the forces at play – not that you don’t already know this, it’s just a great way of seeing the situation.

All I know is that anyone, anytime can alter their destiny – IF THEY WANT IT ENOUGH.

Easier said than done, which is why most (80%) of the population don’t do it.

It is VERY COMPLEX and each person has his/her own story / baggage / history to deal with.

It requires:

  • A LOT of drive, determination and discipline.
  • A LOT of heart, desire and passion.
  • A LOT of trials, testing and realignment.
  • A LOT of self-belief, confidence and courage.
  • A LOT of patience, understanding and acceptance.
  • A LOT of many things most people lack.

They only lack them because they haven’t practiced these skills, abilities and “values”.

The more courageous you are, the more courageous you become.

20 Ideas To Help Students Get Organized 3 of 3

Maria Gracia Web Photo

Maria Gracia

Today’s blog post is the third of a series of three, provided by the “Queen Of Organizing”, Maria Gracia.

You can click on the hyperlinks to access the first 7 organization tips for students and for the next 8 decluttering tips for students.

I am a big fan of this concept that I call Voluntary Simplexity, it’s key element of my Personal Productivity Principles I teach students and business people. So let’s get to Maria’s suggestions…
Now is the perfect time for you to start off on the right foot and get organized. Here are the remaining tips to help you manage your time, avoid clutter, set goals and stay on an organized path to success.

15. SCHEDULE CONSISTENT STUDY TIMES.
Set aside time every day for study, and make it consistent. For example, set your study time for each afternoon from 4:00pm to 6:00pm. Whatever you do, avoid last minute studying and cramming.

16. BREAK IT UP.
Break up big tasks, into smaller, bite-sized jobs. For instance, if you have to study three chapters in your history book, study one chapter at a time each day. If you have to work on a project, break it down into three or four stages.

17. EAT YOUR BROCCOLI FIRST.
Imagine eating your broccoli before your dessert. What would be left for you to look forward to? Just the same, do your homework for your most difficult subjects first. Then, everything else will be a breeze, and therefore, more enjoyable.

18. GET ASSISTANCE.
If you don’t understand a lesson, immediately ask for help. Don’t let it get to the point that you’re totally confused. A sibling, friend, parent or teacher can be a lifesaver.

19. DON’T GIVE UP.
If you find yourself getting off track, simply take a deep breath and get back on track. It is better to get slightly off the path, rather than giving up.

20. REWARD YOURSELF.
Designate enticing rewards for each goal you set, such as a night at the movies, or a quiet, relaxing walk in the park. As you achieve each of your goals, reap your rewards. This will keep you motivated throughout the year.

Want even more tips to help you get organized and on track? Watch expert organizer, Maria Gracia’s, 21-day Organizing Boot Camp today! Its FREE and it’s fun. Just click on the hyperlink.

20 Ideas To Help Students Get Organized 2 of 3

Maria Gracia Web Photo

Maria Gracia

Today’s blog post is the second of a series of three, provided by the “Queen Of Organizing”, Maria Gracia.For the first instalment that has the first seven ideas to help students get organized, click on the hyperlink.

I am a big fan of this concept that I call Voluntary Simplexity, it’s key element of my Personal Productivity Principles I teach students and business people. So let’s get to Maria’s suggestions…
Now is the perfect time for you to start off on the right foot and get organized. Here are a few tips to help you manage your time, avoid clutter, set goals and stay on an organized path to success.

8. EAT AN APPLE A DAY.
Eat three healthy meals each day, along with fruit for snacks. Don’t overload on sweets, which cause many people
to feel tired.

9. AVOID OVERLOAD.
While you may sign up for extra school activities, such as basketball or cheerleading, don’t take on too much. First
determine how much study time you need. Then, choose one or two recreational activities that you enjoy.

10. USE A STUDENT PLANNER.
Use a good student planner or organizer. The ones that have pocket folders, dividers and planning calendars are ideal.

11. USE ONE CALENDAR.
Use one calendar to plan all of your school and personal activities, rather than two or more. When you use more than
one, you run the risk of scheduling conflicts and missed appointments. This is very important. Heed the old proverb ‘A man who wears two watches, never knows the correct time.’

12. COLOR-CODE.
You may consider color-coding similar activities on your calendar. For example, highlight all upcoming tests in yellow, study time in green and recreational activities in pink.

13. WRITE IT DOWN.
When you learn of an upcoming test, event, or anything you must prepare for or attend, immediately jot it in your planner. Don’t wait for later, or you may forget about it.

14. BREAK UP YOUR STUDY TIME.
Determine how many study hours you need, and schedule study time in your planner. For example, if you need six hours of time to study for a test, you may break that time up into six sessions, of one hour each. Choose the six days and make a ‘study time’ notation in your calendar.

Want even more tips to help you get organized and on track? Watch expert organizer, Maria Gracia’s, 21-day Organizing Boot Camp today! Its FREE and it’s fun. Just click on the hyperlink.

 

Get Better Grades Now Video

Have a look at this fun video…

20 Ideas To Help Students Get Organized 1 of 3

Maria Gracia Web Photo

Maria Gracia

Today’s blog post is the first of a series of three, provided by the “Queen Of Organizing”, Maria Gracia. I am a big fan of this concept that I call Voluntary Simplexity, it’s key element of my Personal Productivity Principles I teach students and business people. So let’s get to Maria’s suggestions…
Now is the perfect time for you to start off on the right foot and get organized. Here are a few tips to help you manage your time, avoid clutter, set goals and stay on an organized path to success.

  1. SET GOALS.
    Set realistic goals at the beginning of the school year and break those large goals into mini-goals. Write these goals down on index cards and keep them in a highly visible place where you can see them every day. Writing down your goals makes them more concrete, and motivates you to keep working towards them. Psst! You can do this even mid-semester!
  2. DON’T RUSH.
    Wake up early enough for school to arrive well ahead of time. If you need 30 minutes to get up, shower and dress, pad that time by waking up at least 45 minutes prior to your departure. To ensure you don’t turn off your alarm clock and go back to sleep, place your clock at the far end of your room. This way, you actually have to get out of bed to turn it off and you’re most likely to stay up.
  3. PREPARE YOUR WARDROBE.
    Before you go to bed each night, choose, iron and lay out your clothes for the next day. This way, you’ll be all set to dress and go in the morning.
  4. AVOID CLUTTER.
    At the beginning of the school year, you have no clutter. Be careful not to build clutter as the year progresses. Create separate folders for school announcements, tests that have been graded, papers you must give to your parents and so on. As papers become outdated, such as an event that has passed, toss them immediately.
  5. MAKE TO DO LISTS.
    Always spend a minimum of 15 minutes per day, preparing your To Do list for tomorrow. In doing so, you will know exactly what tasks you have to accomplish the next day.
  6. USE AN EFFECTIVE STUDY AREA.
    Designate a quiet, well-lit area for studying. Don’t study in front of the television, or in an area of your home where you’re bound to be distracted. Hang a ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign on your door. If you can’t find a quiet spot at home, go to the library. In addition, you should study while sitting at a table or desk. Avoid studying in a very comfortable chair or a bed, which may cause you to feel drowsy.
  7. GET YOUR BEAUTY SLEEP.
    Get a good night’s rest. This will ensure you are alert and ready to learn the following day.

Want even more tips to help you get organized and on track? Watch expert organizer, Maria Gracia’s, 21-day Organizing Boot Camp today! Its FREE and it’s fun. Just click on the hyperlink.

 

2 Minute Exam Success Technique

Today’s blog post is a TED TALK that can help you study better and reduce your exam anxiety in less than 2 minutes… Check it out!

Speed Reading A Must For Students Of All Ages

I have blogged about Speed Reading countless times on this blog as well as reinforced how my Speed Reading Video Program works.

Today is a little different because I was interviewed about Speed Reading and Accelerated Learning Techniques on a very well respected blog.

Click on the hyperlink to read the interview on how to leverage accelerated learning techniques and speed reading to get better grades.

As you well know by now, I don’t endorse many products, but this one’s different because it’s software that helps you track your progress and adjusts the strategies to suit your particular areas of improvement.

I highly recommend it in addition to my Speed Learning Video Program, in fact there is a special limited time offer on right now that you should seriously consider. Click on the hyperlink to read all about it!