4 Tips for Better Grades

library - 4 tips for better grades

I have been a terrible student. I hated studying. The only thing present in my mind was playing games; and I was pretty good at them. In elementary and high school, I was thinking about getting just the passing grade so that I can play games in peace. I though that I was bad at studying, and I thought that I couldn’t get good grades even if I wanted. My potentials were same as my thoughts.

Well, to be honest, I hate studying even today. I hate studying for school. But I love studying what I pick by my own hands (which is everything else besides what I study at school, from sciences to humanities). I am majoring in English Language and Literature; and even though I like languages, it really pains me to study just for the sake of a diploma.

Which concludes to our first point on how have better grades.

1. Reason. Reason yourself. Create a reason and purpose of your studies. Most of the students who don’t study say that the material is not helpful and worthless for the future. Every piece of knowledge is valuable. You will never know when you will need it. And even when you need it, it will help you, without you realizing it. We make decisions in an instant, but little do we know that our brains already analyzed most of the knowledge before the decision. If you don’t like studying history, reason yourself. It is not just history; but you study everything from sociology, economy, anthropology, psychology etc. It is more beneficial than we realize. Think of every piece of knowledge you get as important; because the more knowledge you have, the more connections you can make in your mind. A genius, connects the unconnected.

2. Just do it. If you already enrolled, just do what you have to do. Finish it successfully. Use the present as much as possible. We go to school once in our life, so do your best.

3. 3-Steps. This is the study plan I follow for my history class which is too broad; it would be too hard to study it a week before the exam. First. Study before. Read up the chapter before the lectures. By having information already in your head, the lecture will be more effective. It will sort out the information you didn’t understand well, and strengthen the knowledge you held already. Second. Follow the lecture. Don’t play around because others are. Don’t worry about the others. You came to study, not to play around right? You can play around after the classes. Write notes, preferably write your own notes instead of rewriting the ones from the presentation. Lastly. The last step is to check the notes. Read your notes when you get back. And if you have practice classes later, than read up the chapter again and highlight the important parts. You can also write new notes while highlighting; it will also help you to study before the exams.

4. Before exams. You need a plan. And you need to follow through it. If you are one of the students, who just study and never really feel that it is enough; you definitely need a plan. Take a paper, and write-up all the subjects. Next, see how many days (minimum) you need for each subject, sort them out; and make a study plan for each subject. If you did everything well until now, you just have to follow through your plan and profit.

Photo by: timetrax23

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9 Realizations that Helped Me Wake up Early

cat morning - how to wake up

Remember when you decided to wake up earlier? It would mean longer days and a longer life. We would be more productive; we would feel better. We could do stuff in the calm morning. Without a vigorous determination, it is not an easy task to wake up early; especially when waking up early is not an obligation.

Here are some realizations that helped me wake up early.

1. Wake up early. Yep. It is pretty hard to wake up early, if we haven’t woken up early in the first place. By waking up early we open up more time throughout the day which we can use to exhaust ourselves (hopefully productively).

2. Use the day. Both in body and mind. You have to use up most of your energy; sleep will come because you need it. You will feel better, realizing that the day was spent lively.

3. Work out. By working out, we keep our energy and health in check. As it was in the previous point, we have to use up our body energy as well. In this technological era, working out is one of the only solutions to really move our body. (Of course, any activity such as jogging, swimming, sports and so on, are fine.)

4. Eat. Eat well, and balanced. It will give us energy to live the day and keep us healthy. Eating around two hours before sleep is not recommended as we need time to digest our food before a good sleep. Otherwise, it will be harder to sleep, and also sleep won’t be as effective because it is digesting instead of doing its original function.

5. Transition. Prepare for sleep. About an hour before sleep, turn off your music, and any other media. Wash up, prepare your bed; do your night chores.

6. Thoughts. Oftentimes, once we lie down to sleep, we get stuck in our endless cycle of thoughts. They can be productive, such as thinking about a new blog post, or we may just end up thinking about some random unimportant things. But whatever their type may be, they are hurting the possibility of sleep. Get a paper or your mobile, and write down the thoughts; write down the solutions. Give them an order and an end. If you have things to remember, write them down so that you can see them in the morning. Bonus: It is fine to tune into some random ideas and thoughts as long as they don’t require a great focus, and as long as they don’t bother us. Just don’t think about the fact that you aren’t asleep yet, it will make you active again, and you will get needless worry.

7. Cool. You can’t sleep if it’s too hot. You may open the door a bit, or the window. Let some air through the blanket. Keep the temperature cool.

8. No lights. Close the curtains. Turn off unnecessary light in the room. Of course, you can keep them if you are fine with the lights; it is just that I am too sensitive to even minor distractions.

9. Mindset. Stay positive. Stay disciplined. Stay determined for the tomorrow. You deserved the sleep. And be grateful for the roof above your head. Be happy.

Photo by: Froskeland

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7 Reasons You Should Write

pen paper - why you should write

If you have wondered if you should start writing, anything. If you have wondered why you are so bad at writing, or speaking as well. If you have wondered about the benefits of writing, then wonder no more, and read these points on why you should write.

1. Creation. Turn the magical world inside your head into a reality. Make your ideas real. Recreate the imaginary. Have your own creation.

2. Pleasure. Feel good about your creation. Feel good that you did something. Relieve the stress by pouring out your thoughts. Refresh yourself by writing something beautiful.

3. Creativity. Force your mind to play around and catch ideas worth writing. Make it easier to come up with ideas. Boost your artistic bar by writing fiction or non-fiction. Broaden your imagination.

4. Fortify. Strengthen your ideas. Create roots for the ideas that are worth it. Connect them. Organize your mind. Broaden the ideas you already have.

5. Discipline. Everything that takes some effort contributes to your discipline. Boost your power of will. Challenge yourself, and be victorious.

6. Intelligence. Push yourself by writing. Train your brain. Encounter new worlds in your mind. Develop your wits.

7. Write. Better. By writing more. Practice your thinking. Hone your creativity. Boost your speaking skills by making it easier to catch ideas. Be more competitive. Write on a writers’ community or write on your secret diary. Write anywhere, anytime, about anything.

Photo by: Liz West

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Stop Lying and Start Succeeding

winter hike - being consistent

When I was younger, in elementary and high school, I used to lie, a lot. When someone would ask me a question, my mind would immediately look for a lie to tell. And I would play a game with myself, about how long I could act with my lie. It didn’t last long though because I can’t resist my laughter. And I am terrible in acting as well. I used to think that it was cool to trick and lie people.

But then when times got serious, and when I started working to improve myself, the conception of “cool” changed. I respected the successful people who were disciplined. I especially loved the Japanese samurai and their consistency with their words and decisions. I wanted to be like them. Both in their sense of discipline and their swordsmanship (I was an Asian kid, of course I loved swords and magic).

I realized how foolish I was to lie every day, and feel pleasure from it. And I also realized how my habit of lying was hurting my development and success. It was easy to lie to my mother that I finished my homework, and it was easy to lie to myself as well. My power of will was equal to zero, except for when I had to play with my wooden swords. It was really hard to do stuff.

But then I changed and I figured that I had the possibility to be great, and that it was the only choice. The first thing I had to do was to never lie again. It was fairly easy, because I totally changed my mindset and because I was a new person. I realized how easy it is to do stuff once you stop lying. It was either the truth or the truth, I had no choice. I couldn’t lie to myself nor to others. I got the sense of discipline.

From then on, I was always telling the truth, and lying only in the rarest cases where you have to, if you don’t want to offend someone. I made promises to myself, and tried hard not to break them. When I decided to wake up early, I had to wake up early, or I would be lying to myself. And when I would lie to myself once, it would be easy to lie once more, and then I had to discipline myself from the beginning again.

I was being consistent with my words, and my decisions. If I wanted to be shown as a successful person, I could’t lie that I was one, but I had to be one. I realized that being myself, meant that I had to be true to my heart, my mind and my promises.

Photo by: Laurent Lecordier

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Are You Trying or Doing?

chain - i will try

We may think that words said loudly or even just in our minds, don’t affect our next move much. But in fact, they may be one of the most important factors in our decisions in daily lives. Just like how habits are created with the first few tries. An “I will try” or “I will do” may start the chain of success or failure.

Here is why.

I will try. You are immediately giving yourself and excuse if you fail. Someone asks you for a help, and you tell them that you will try. What do you do? You just try, and if it fails, you have kept your word. You have tried. You didn’t tell them that you will succeed or fail. By using the word trying, we instantly open a way to failure. We let failure become one of the possible outcomes. We don’t keep going until we succeed. Or until there is really no way for it to be done, in our circumstances.

Use “I will do” instead. You promised them (or yourself) to do it. And you better do it, if you want to keep your word. By using the word do, instead of try, we let our mind know that we are planning on “doing” it, rather than satisfying ourselves by just “trying”. Next time you need to finish something, don’t try, just do.

Photo by: scelera

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10 Ways to Cherish our Bodies

superman - how to cherish our bodies

I believe we all know how important it is to see what’s in front of us. The numerous opportunities to be taken, people to be loved, and treasures to be dug. But there is actually something that is way more important than that. What actually makes us possible to enjoy all the features coming with life, is our body.

It makes everything possible. It is what drives us forward, and it is something we should cherish the most. Because without it, we can’t cherish anything in the end.

Our bodies are our best friends and our partners in life. It knows all our secrets, our desires, ambitions and dreams. And it is what will help us reach them.

And what do people do? We don’t see what is actually tangible, but rather look at something abstract, like our desires and urges. Actually we get so blinded with our abstract wishes, goals and destinations, that we totally forsake the one who is actually making it all happen.

Here are some points on how to cherish our bodies.

1. Listen to it. Really. We are lucky that we can feel the same what it feels. But we are dumb if we ignore the warning signs. If you are tired, rest and reflect. If you feel sick, do something about it. Your body is telling you that something is wrong. Your body is telling you that you are doing something wrong. Stop and reflect. Figure what you are doing wrong, and fix it.

2. No drastic changes. Even machines can’t work like that. Don’t incorporate dramatic changes in your lifestyle. If you have slept 10 hours each night, you can’t suddenly change it to 7 hours. Go slow, safe and smooth.

3. Don’t overwork it. You know what happens to your mobile-phone if you use it too long, too much? It gets heated. And you know what happens if it gets heated a lot? It gets broken. Deadlines and work is serious. But it will get more serious when you get sick. So get some rest in-between. Take a walk. Take a nap. Drink a cup of water, or tea. Anything. Just stand up and take your mind off the work or whatever you were doing when you feel you are tired.

4. Eat, a lot. Not in evenings before sleep. Eat, a lot, in the morning and throughout the day. It is what keeps us going. It is what is fueling us. The more you eat, the more energy you have. And the more energy you have, the more productive you can be. Don’t forget to eat fruits. And drink fluid, like water.

5. Exercise. You think you don’t have time? Don’t be silly. Exercise will make us healthier, and stronger, which naturally brings more energy to our daily lives. And you already read what energy means. Yes, more productivity. Twenty minutes is just fine. Morning, or evening, however it suits your day. Five times a week. Any exercise you want. Exercise until you sweat or it won’t count as an exercise. So use your twenty minutes effectively.

6. Take naps. Feel tired? Take a twenty minute nap. It does wonders. It works better if it is integrated into our daily schedule. For example, sleeping at 23:00, to 5:30, and then taking a nap at 13:00. It will replenish the energy for the rest of your day. Taking naps on evenings is risky because it can prove harder to fall asleep. But if you are very tired, a twenty minute nap won’t hurt. Or just drink a cup of tea in the evenings.

7. The obvious ones. Drinking. Smoking. Doing risky sports. Going to smoky environments. I don’t have to explain them, right?

8. Be thankful. That it is keeping you alive. That it is allowing you to live your life how you want. That you can draw, that you can play instruments, that you can write. You can create anything you want. Be thankful. That it lets you receive and share love. That you can get to know new people and hold your family and friends tight, because the body is letting you live. You can share your life with anyone you want.

9. Love it. It is the closest thing you will own. And it is also the best thing you will own. Our bodies and minds are the most complex and perfect creations. They have no limits. You have no limits thanks to it.

10. Realize. The bodies allow us to create and share. However complex or imaginative our worlds in our minds are. We can recreate it through our bodies. Whatever we dream about. We can make it a reality thanks to our bodies. And, whichever change we want to bring to the world. We can make it happen with our bodies. So realize the magical extent of our bodies, cherish it, appreciate it, love it and, use it for a better good.

Illustration by: artofmanliness

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4 Points in Strengthening Self Belief

a belief can’t exist on something which isn’t.

Having a strong sense of belief in yourself comes best by creating and being the self you want to believe in. Even just starting to be that what you wish to be, can be a great contributor to a greater self-belief and confidence. Don’t be tricked, it is a no easy journey, but a journey which every happy and successful person travels. If the journey feels difficult to take, broaden your purpose about it. It is not just about a strong sense of self-belief, it is  about fulfilling your dreams, living the life, and meeting the best you that you can possibly be.

A confidence in yourself must come with a reason and a proof. You must really have something to believe in. And the best part is, you can create it. You can create the yourself that you wish to believe in.

Here are some general points on being a better self.

1. Love. Love yourself. You exist, you breathe, you perceive, you think, you feel and you love. You don’t need any more reasons. Love others. Love them because they exist, love them because they are different, love them because they create, love them because they love you.

2. Strive. Strive for your dreams, it will help you color the world around you. Strive to better your talents, it will develop the unique you. Strive to achieve your goals, it will make you feel competent. Strive for curiosity, you will love everything around you. Strive for knowledge, general and specific, it will broaden your conscience and the world around you. Strive for a better world, it will broaden your purpose and bring you humbleness.

3. Cherish. Cherish your mind and fill it with love, optimism and knowledge. Cherish your body, it is the one that makes everything possible, work out and eat healthy. Cherish your friends, they are a big help even if we don’t know it. Cherish your family, because they cherish you.

4. Enjoy. Enjoy the beauty of creation, you and everything around you. Enjoy today that holds unlimited possibilities. Enjoy the tomorrow that is waiting for you. Enjoy the fact that you are striving for your dreams. And most importantly, enjoy the journey of life.

Photo by: halilgokdal

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