Archive for the 'Study Mistakes To Avoid' Category

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.

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.

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.

 

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.

 

Mark Wahlberg goes back to high school

Marky Mark, Mark Wahlberg Back To SchoolI stumbled across an article that said Mark Wahlberg is going to get his high school diploma.  What does it tell you when a multi-millionaire actor wants a high school diploma?

It means there is value in getting one. This is a man who’s seen more of the world than most and experienced things to fill 3 or 4 lifetimes yet he still feels a little intimidated by the process.

What does that tell you?

Education is worth something. It’s not just self-esteem issue. The stats are staggering, but let’s face it, most high school dropouts don’t care about the stats, but they might care about a RICH, SUCCESSFUL ACTOR going back to school.

So there you have it – ONE MORE REASON TO STAY IN SCHOOL!

Free Audio Book Sample

We recently announced the new Audio Book version of our bestselling study guide: Get The Best Grades With The Least Amount Of Effort. We’ve just uploaded the free sample to the product page and it’s yours for free, no opt-in or email required.

We believe you’ll realise you need to get it so you stop wasting countless hours studying for nothing when you could learn HOW to learn while taking the bus or walking to school.

There is no faster, easier way to learn these study tips. The MP3 files are compatible with your iPod, iMac, iPhone, iTunes, iPad and Windows Media Player.

Audio Book, Study Guide Audio, Study Tips

Audio Book

Audio Book, Study Guide Audio BookWe’ve just launched the Audio Book version of our bestselling book Get The Best Grades With The Least Amount Of Effort!

Get it now and start improving your grades while you walk, drive or take the bus to and from school or work. It’s the easiest, effortless way to improve your grades!

As you know by now, I am not into promoting lazy student habits, but I have to admit listening to audio books is the laziest, easiest and most effective way to use your ‘downtime’ that is otherwise just lost and wasted.

Did You Know?

Using your commuting time to listen to educational audio programs is the equivalent of a full credit college or university course!

Did You Know?

Listening to an audio book or program on the same subject as a book you’ve read can double your memory retention and increase your ability to recall information?

Did You Know?

That whilst reading a book triggers your visual learning style, an audio book or recording stimulates your auditory and kinaesthetic learning styles?

CLICK ON THE HYPERLINK ->  OR ON THE AUDIO BOOK IMAGE TO GET YOURS NOW!

How To Ace Your Next Exam: Perfect Practice Makes Perfect

How To Ace Your Next Exam, Pass Exam, Test Anxiety, Student Stress

Exam Stress Got You Down?

The best way to achieve mastery is to practice, but you need to practice within the right context and environment.

Spending 1 to 2 hours on a problem the week before an exam that only allows you 20 to 30 minutes to solve it won’t help your exam related stress – in fact it will most probably INCREASE IT!

I know it’s hard to do, but you need to START your preparation much sooner than you think. What I suggest is that within a week of starting a course, you determine the exam content. I’m totally serious.

With the full content of the final exam (you can ask for copies of previous exams – usually available at the library or online), you will know what you know and what you need to learn.

One thing is for sure – you’ll be a lot less stressed if you do this than if you don’t.

Exam stress is mostly due to uncertainty – the “not knowing” what’s going to be on the exam rather than the difficulty associated with the questions.

Once you’ve figured that out, you can easily deal with it.

Otherwise you’ll continue to be best friends with DREAD and that’s no fun is it?

How to remember more – don’t walk through doors!

Memory, Cramming For Exams, Exam Prep, Exam Preparation, How To Remember MoreI previously blogged about Exam-Taking Tips with the second suggestion highlighting  the encoding specificity principle when studying for an important exam.

In a recent Scientific American article, they explain why walking through a doorway makes you forget.

As a student preparing for an important exam or test, you can use this to either NOT forget or TO forget… Let me explain.

Study Tip #1: Interrupt your pattern when you’re stuck on something

If you are struggling with a topic, problem or even writing your term paper or essay, you might want to get up and walk out the door and come back in – to interrupt your pattern and use the encoding specificity principle to trigger the needed interruption and re-setting of your memory.

Study Tip #2: Stay seated until you’re finished studying or writing your essay

There is a lot to be said about full immersion and concentration of focus. The Scientific American article explains in detail why, when you’re “in the zone” – you should say put (seated) and NOT get up and walk through a doorway – literally.

Even though this may sound superstitious, it’s not.

I know anecdotally these study tips work. I would study, compile research, read and write for hours and when I wrote my MBA and Ph.D. theses without interruption. Often, I would be at my desk for several hours without getting up – BECAUSE I had momentum, focus and total concentration.

If you want to get better grades with the least amount of effort – you want to use these study tips and make them work FOR you rather than AGAINST you.

Try them out and let us know how they work for you!

By the way, the Scientific American article was sent to me by Bree Robbins of Paddington PupsQueensland’s #1 Doggy Day Care and Grooming Facility.

Thanks Bree for sharing, I won’t forget it!

Having trouble focusing while studying?

If you’re trying to cram for an exam or otherwise trying to get a lot of studying done or reviewing a lot of notes in a short period of time and losing focus, you might want to stare out the window – or even better, take a walk outside.

Seriously, if there are trees out there, it might just help.

According to Attention Restoration Theory (ART) people can concentrate better after spending time in nature, or even looking at scenes of nature. Natural environments abound with “soft fascinations” which a person can reflect upon in “effortless attention”, such as clouds moving across the sky, leaves rustling in a breeze or water bubbling over rocks in a stream. The theory was developed by Rachel and Stephen Kaplan in the 1980s in their book The experience of nature: A psychological perspective and has since been found by others to hold true in medical outcomes as well as intellectual task attention.

If you don’t have direct access to nature, researchers seem to agree that WATCHING VIDEOS might be the next best thing.

I did a quick YouTube search and found this video – I am sure some of you can find a better one that we can share… Please post the YouTube URL as a comment and I’ll publish the best ones!

The key is to envelop your visual sense in the experience…

You only need a few minutes of involuntary ‘effortless’ attention to then return to your task and have full concentration and focus.

Why my study tips work

I think you should watch this video, it’s only 3 minutes long and explains…

How and why my study techniques work

Students Social NOTworking

Today’s post is quick and to the point because The Economist Magazine recently reported that 75% of student time is used for socialising, recreation and sleeping and only 7% for studying.

It’s no mystery why so many students are struggling to get good grades.

Stop reading this and get back to your books!!!!

Frustrated With School?

One of the ironies of the world is that in under developed countries, young people are dying to get to school – in some cases that’s literally true. I don’t want to get on a political soap box because that’s not what this blog is about. Others can do a much better job of promoting that agenda than I can.

I, however, can change the world one student at a time.

If you’re frustrated with school, ask yourself why. I mean really ask yourself the question honestly. Is it because you’re lazy? Tired? Bored? Scared (being bullied)? Not doing as well as you’d like? Not in the popular crowd/group?

Ask yourself the question until YOU KNOW the real reason.

When you do know the absolute real REASON, deal with it.

Deal with it because it’s what’s preventing you from getting the RESULTS you want and dream about.

We’re REASON or we’re RESULTS.

It’s as simple as that.

It’s as complicated as that.

Complicated because UNLESS you’re honest with yourself, you’ll never deal with the #1 obstacle in your path. That means you’ll never achieve your true/ultimate destiny.

That’s enough for you to think about for today, or not.

Most people won’t give much thought, but then again most people (as many as 80% of 8 out 10) end up unhappy in their lives as adults, with regrets.

Regrets that go all the way back to their school days when they KNOW they could have made a shift that would have changed their lives forever.

If only they had know then what they know now.

Well guess what?

You are young enough NOW to make the change.

Make it and I guarantee you that in 20 years from now, you’ll remember this blog post when you meet someone who has regrets and is unhappy. You’ll realise that YOU made the effort when it counted… RIGHT NOW.

And they didn’t.

Don’t be that person — I know too many of them.

Lives lost and ruined because of lack of discipline, self esteem and self worth.

But also pure, sheer laziness and lack of will.

You can achieve ANYTHING you want in life (or school), you just need to WANT IT BAD ENOUGH and then do WHATEVER it takes to make it happen.

I know -

  • I have 5 university degrees, including an Engineering degree, MBA, Law and PhD degrees.
  • I can solve a Rubik’s cube in less than 4 minutes
  • I am a top 20 world-ranked squash player
  • I speak 2 languages fluently and understand a 3rd conversationally
  • I retired from the rat race at age 42
  • I’ve been to 36 different countries
  • I’ve had 6 BMWs, 2 of them convertibles
  • I’ve been in the same committed relationship for more than 27 years
  • I haven’t had a sick day in more than 20 years
  • I can speed read 1,800+ words/minute

I’m not superman – I just have great strategies, but most important of all, I have passion and drive to make things happen.

Bad study habits – you need to change them

We all have bad habits, but bad study habits can kill your grades faster than anything else. I could go on and on, but you know what I’m talking about.

  • Procrastinating, putting things off until the last minute.
  • Not paying attention in class.
  • Not doing the reading (at all let alone BEFORE the lecture).
  • Trying to learn everything on your own without a MasterMind Group.
  • Not taking enough notes.
  • Reading slowly when you know you could learn speed reading.
  • Getting stressed during exams and tests.

Perfect Preparation Prevents Piss Poor Performance.

Get your hands on my bestselling study book – it’s been sold to thousands of students from more than 29 countries and has been translated into 4 languages. Proven and guaranteed to work, you have 8 full weeks to make sure the study strategies and tips I will reveal to you work, or you’ll get your money back, no questions asked.

Go from getting Ds to As THIS semester

Get Better Grades THIS Semester

Get Better Grades THIS Semester

When you buy my study book… In chapter 1, I am going to show you HOW you learn so that you can INSTANTLY improve your grades as of your next test, quiz or exam.

With a 100% Money-Back-Guarantee, you have nothing to lose except the A or B on your next test or exam.

I’d like to make it harder and more complicated, but the reality is that it’s quite simple and straightforward – When you know WHAT to do and HOW to do it. It’s all revealed in my study book.

How To Study For Your SAT, LSAT or GMAT

If you are studying for your SAT, LSAT or GMAT, here is the best advice I can give you.

Step #1: Buy all the preparation material from the original standardized testing service / organisation. They want you to succeed and are going to be straight with you. Read it all and FOLLOW the recommendations. They created and administer the test. They don’t have any tricks up their sleeves. They have to follow strict protocols and procedures.

Step #2: Only buy a prep program that you know from someone who has used it successfully. Too many of these companies prey on your lack of confidence and exploit you accordingly. First with a pre-set programs and THEN individual tutoring often at exorbitant cost. Let’s face it – if you need tutoring for the test, you have bigger problems…

Step #3: This is the important one. SIMULATE the test as often as time permits. All of these tests have TIME RESTRICTIONS and the key to succeeding is going through it over and over and over again, so that by the time you write the test that counts, you’ve got the PROCESS down pat. I did this to rank in the top percentiles of the GMAT and LSAT tests with LESS stress and better results than my classmates. Success is all about preparation and practice. As a minimum, you want to simulate the test 3 times.

Ideally, you go to the exam room (or one like it) to really put you in the mood. Yes, as you would expect, that’s what I did. I did it in the evening when the classrooms were available, uninterrupted. I think I simulated the tests 4 or 5 times (at 3 hours/test, that’s a BIG commitment, but keep reading why the payoff might be BIGGER than you thought!)

When I suggest simulation, I mean doing it LIKE THE REAL THING. Start and stop ON TIME. Grade yourself and gauge where you lost time and what you can improve. You know from my study book how to do this… This is just a SPECIFIC TASK that you want to PERFECT.

The reason is that standardized testing is important – it can mean the difference between getting in to the school you want or not. (When I placed in the top percentiles, I received invitations from top schools to apply… Imagine that – having THEM chase you! If you didn’t know, the top schools get access to the top students and try to woo them…

That’s why this is so important!

Why most students struggle in school

Simply stated, most students struggle in school because they don’t know how they learn, In Chapter 1 of my worldwide bestselling study book, I explain step-by-step how you can determine what learning style you have so you can stop wasting countless hours staring at your books, frustrated because nothing’s making sense and you can’t remember anything you tried to memorise the previous day.

If you don’t know HOW you learn, you’ll keep struggling in school. Knowing your learning style can be a life-changing revelation.

Let me put it this way – if you’re one of these styles and you don’t know it, chances are, if you’ve just started high school, you probably won’t make it to college.

If you do get to college, you’ll get kicked out within the first year.

Not because you’re dumb, but because you weren’t smart enough to learn HOW you learn.

I know how harsh this sounds, but it’s better that I tell you the truth NOW when you have a chance to fix the problem once and for all.

PreMed Student Work-School Balance Tip

Pre Med Student Tance asks some great questions about how to get better grades while holding down a job.

Hello Dr. Dussault,
As a matter a fact I have read your book twice already. It is truly insightful and I am truly glad I purchased it. The only dilemma I have and I hope you can help me with this – I am currently in college, in premed, and I work a full time schedule and the only shift I can work is the midnight shift. There are many nights I feel exhausted and sometimes can’t concentrate on my studies. I need the job to support me and my wife.

The only good part is my job gives me quite a bit of money to pay for school. But do you have any suggestions as far as how I can study better with this schedule?

Thank you so much.
Tance

This is a common issue students grapple with, combining work and study. In my study book, I explain in chapter 4 a 5-step system to get everything done effortlessly. So the first suggestion is go back to that chapter and re-read the suggestions. Once that’s done, I think your challenge has more to do with stamina and endurance than time management. Continue reading ‘PreMed Student Work-School Balance Tip’