Motivation is huge for me in every task that I do. I try to always have several large goals that I think will better my life in my way and I chose to constantly seek out different influences in order to help drive me to complete these goals. Recently these goals have been to study Japanese effectively and to make the most out of my second year of college that I can. I have been trying to constantly seek out Japanese music, friends and videos to help inspire me to learn the language and the culture of Japan more. With school, I started using handshake and sending out tons of applications for internships and jobs. Also I’ve been doing work early for my next semester classes by reading the textbooks in their syllabi. I think that I can only bring myself to do this because I have the end goal in mind. I’m always trying to reach my own dreams and be the person that I dream to be. I recently read this book called the Alchemist that featured a shepherd trying to live out his own personal legend or dream in the face of adversity and challenges. It was a great book that helped to teach me that everything you do in life is dependent on your perspective on life. You have to frame your perspective in the way that you like or else you won’t be completely satisfied and may not ever complete your dreams. Even with all this, I definitely still struggle to find motivation to consistently study or put in my full effort. I try to then seek influences through music or social media or just with role models to try and help drive me to work hard again. The https://www.brainscape.com/blog/2011/06/how-to-take-a-study-break/ website in the module helped to give me a reminder of how I can keep focus when I’m feeling tired with studying. I can’t just take random breaks in the middle of my study sessions and I will try to shift my perspective on refreshing my mental by going on things like walks throughout campus with music or just casually checking in on my friends or role models that inspire me. For any future student, it is necessary to have a group that you can bounce inspiration off of and it is necessary to have people that care about your success, motivating you to succeed not only for yourself but also for the sake of others.
Last spring semester I really had to crack down and do a lot of research. I was enrolled in higher level history and political science classes that both required a thorough research paper about respectively post world war 2 Japan and gun violence. The importance of these papers was echoed throughout the entire semester, making me really fear how hard these tasks were gonna be. Yet, by starting research early I learned that the tasks weren’t so bad even though this was my first time writing multiple papers that had to be ten pages or more. When doing research, you have to use academic, peer reviewed sources so using a universities library system is very helpful. Also, you have to realize that you won’t end up using every source that you initially found and thought was helpful when writing the paper. This is why doing research early is so good. You can consistently gain good information relating to your topic, mixing the contents of these sources into answering a thesis for your paper. A paper needs to have a reason to contain research so when doing research you should always think about how these sources can add to a thesis or to the paper as a whole. I learned that primary sources can be in multiple forms besides from academic journals as well. Interviews, archives, government publications and more can all be used to make a paper both fresh and well written academically. In the module I liked the slide referring to Wikipedia. Wikipedia is very dangerous to use but it contains a great list of sources that can compliment a paper. Wikipedia is useful in just finding more great sources to me and I definitely used the website for this aspect in my papers. This https://library.educause.edu/resources/2007/6/7-things-you-should-know-about-wikipedia website was very nice in recognizing the strengths and weaknesses of Wikipedia. For future students, it’s necessary to do research early so that the paper isn’t a pain to do and so that you can really obtain a lot of good information that can benefit a thesis question or research question.
Over the course of my freshman year in college, it was very interesting to see how my note taking strategies differed in different classes. In the classes I were passionate about and genuinely enjoyed, I took very extensive notes that constantly focused on connecting to not only each other but also a central idea for the topic. I was very focused and alert to what the teacher was actually saying, paying attention to additional remarks that are important but were not on the power point slide. This made my notes pretty effective in both retaining information in class and reviewing outside of class. Studying the notes became way easier because I was genuinely interested in knowing the topics. In comparison, in classes that I wasn’t very interested in my note taking strategies were pretty poor. I would just regurgitate the information on the power points and I would constantly wait for the class to be over. This made my mind drift to topics beyond the information taught in class. I would think about what I would do later in the day or even just about how much I don’t like or care about what I’m learning about in that moment. This mindset was extremely bad because it made my notes very poor and made it so I didn’t really gain an advantage from actually attending lectures. I didn’t retain any extra information, couldn’t ask questions, and had notes that were very confusing. This made it so I had to spend extra time out of class looking at online lectures or help so that I could do well in these classes. For the future, I have learned that it is vital to keep the end goal in mind. While I might not like what I’m learning about now, the class is being taught for a reason and the information can help me in my life and with becoming the person I dream to be in the future. Also I can constantly search for connections by thinking about how the information I’m learning can actually be applied to either my life or other topics of interest. Also I just don’t want to feel like I’m wasting my time in college again so I think I have became more resilient since having these initial experiences. My note taking is very motivation based so I will try to constantly give myself motivation in every class I partake in and I will constantly try to excite myself by connecting old information to new information. I’ve learned from videos like “taking notes in class” that even though many people will have different types of note taking strategies, that the best strategy is what works best for the individual. Any new student should try experiment and see what type of notes is best for them in retaining information and being engaged in class. This video can be found at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yc5qyMTjO3k
Time management has always been weird challenge for me. In a macro sense, I always get my assignments done and effectively do well on my assignments. While I may leave with satisfactory grades or participation, my time management on a micro sense is very bad. I’ll more often than not sacrifice a consistent sleep schedule in order to procrastinate more. I’ll make sure to go to the classes and events that matter to me, but I might pass out afterwards, living mainly in the night time while everyone else is sleeping during a normal time. I think this comes from the fact that I was never really taught time management and that I kind of figured out everything by myself. While unconventional I figured that as long as everything got finished eventually, then nothing else really matters. Now I realize that while this may be true, it is better for my health, another form of success, to be more consistent. I shouldn’t give myself more anxiety by procrastinating tasks and I shouldn’t do my tasks alone at 3am. I need to try and do my tasks early and ensure that I’m doing not only accurate work but meaningful work. My old manner of doing tasks can make me easily view everything assigned to me as a drag or really boring. I stop viewing school positively and I change my goal to finishing tasks instead of effectively learning from them. Coming into my sophomore autumn semester, I know that I won’t just suddenly adhere to a strict schedule but I need to put an emphasis on doing tasks as soon as I get them. I need to put in a really strong initial effort and keep editing or studying with tasks so that I can really keep getting better and better with the things I do over time. For new students, I really advise checking yourself on what you really want from college. If you want to just receive a good grade, then do whatever works for you as long as you can get your responsibilities done accurately and effectively; However, if you want to make the best time of your experience, develop the ability to be savvy with your time. It’ll help in doing tasks that don’t excite you initially, possibly finding more good with tasks if you give them a solid early chance and seek help through others in order to do it effectively, not adding other pressures or difficulties onto yourself.
Throughout my first year of college, I believe that my time management skills weren’t the best. I would prioritize the assignments that I had the most personal interest in, making assignments that weren’t aligning with my major or interests at the time, way more difficult to go through. They would be more difficult because I would procrastinate them and wouldn’t want to spend my best effort to try and complete them. Toward the end of the second semester I learned that I really need to make short, temporary sacrifices in order to complete my meaningful goals. I learned that constantly having motivation through clear goals is crucial for me in doing my best in every assignment I do. To help this, I became more vulnerable and tried to rely on friends or other sources of inspiration to keep me going. I need to constantly see every task I do as paths toward my final rewarding destination. This makes everything feel much more meaningful for me and helps to ensure that I can learn the most from whatever assignment that I do. Next semester I really need to make sure that I cut out a chunk of my day to really self-evaluate and prioritize my tasks. After that, I need to set time aside to really put in a good effort for these tasks. For me, the time of the day that I do assignments or studying doesn’t matter but I just need to make sure that I don’t feel too pressured for either time or distractions. I need to have time to make sure that I am doing the things I am doing effectively. I need to be satisfied with the work I’m doing and genuinely feel a sense of pride from learning the material in my classes and not just from doing well in the classes themselves.
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