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I occasionally get personal questions about my own specific study habits. I generally try to avoid them because they’re usually only productive for a single conversation with the asker. This time I responded with something that I found potentially helpful to others so I published the relevant portions of it.

So, you talk about motivations for studying a lot. Do you still study much now that you’ve graduated? What motivates you to study? I always have a ton of trouble getting interested in school.
-Jake

These days I still find myself studying at least 10-15 minutes a day. It’s oddly reminiscent of my college days. Thankfully, now that I’m out of a traditional schooling environment I can focus my energy on studying things that I’m genuinely curious about consistently.

That means my typical motivation these days is good old fashioned curiosity. The things I study are the same things I’d look up if I had all day to screw around. (Right now I’m on a bit of a language learning kick.)

Having genuine curiosity as my main motivator is amazingly powerful and I see it making its impact. Sometimes the hardest thing to do is to stop studying while I’m still interested in the material. Studying until the curiosity subsides is a bit risky because it often leaves you feeling a little drained and disinterested at the start of the next session.

Of course, I can’t blame anyone for not genuinely being curious in school. Heck, I can’t blame anyone for having trouble finding motivation for studying outside of school when they’re in school all day. School, for me at least, was devastating on my motivation for years.

My motivation through high school was mostly a bit of a game on the system. The whole time I was looking for tricks that would get me ahead with very little work (never cheated, that always looked like a bit of a cop out.) I had almost no interest in actually learning the material. I just wanted to find the quickest way through it. That motivation didn’t end up helping dramatically in the grades department until later years.

In reality, it likely took years of work to get my motivation for traditional academics up to the average level. Once I did that, using a few of the tricks I learned in high school, and a few more that I developed over the years through experimentation, my results dramatically improved.

The funny thing about that is that it instantly boosted my motivation even higher without any more effort. Suddenly, I had more than enough motivation to get everything done. I had academic motivation in reserves.

I’d like to say I discovered some great motivation but, for me, it didn’t come down to one single motivation. I like to discuss single motivators but I suspect most people are motivated by a lot of little things. Often the motivation comes down to the motivation for a single night at a time. “Ah… I’m curious about this one single things, so I’ll start.”

If I was forced to pick a single motivating factor in my life it would be a stubborn arrogance. I could never accept that I was less than average. Sure, during some of my early high school years my grades represented that but the whole time I was thinking that was wrong. I couldn’t accept I knew less than other students or even my teachers.

Yes… I’m not stupid enough to think I really am smarter than most people logically but emotionally I have that ingrained in everything I do. I’ve gotta’ tell you though. I’m betting there are better motivations out there.

Don’t count on finding motivation from me. All I can do is give you some suggestions of where to look. Ultimately it’s going to come down to you getting miserably frustrated in an attempt to figure it out yourself.

Motivation is and will always be personal.

Do you want to know how to study in under 15 minutes a night? That’s what this blog is all about. Be sure to follow, read the archives, and check out the kindle books in the sidebar to learn more.

Q/A – What’s Your Motivation?

Accelerated Learning Secrets First Written About In Shakespeare’s Times Reemerging And Being Conclusively Proven In Today’s Academic Journals

Professors Karpicke of Purdue University and Roediger, III of Washington University published an incredible paper that is making waves in the top rungs of Academia.

Colleges have taken pride in their ability to train the next generation of students for decades now. By subjecting their students to intimidating reading, long and immense lectures, and rigorous and unforgiving testing, they claim to have properly trained their graduates.

But modern research methods are calling those very claims into question.

You see… what these professors have discovered (and more are joining them every day) is shaking the very foundations of academia – all of the endless hours of studying, reading books, taking notes, and listening to endless lectures… doesn’t really teach students all that much – not even preparing them for the very tests they’re using.

The exact things that colleges and many professors have been encouraging are hindering students’ abilities to learn by occupying their time with ineffective methodologies.

Effective learning isn’t rocket science either….

“Francis Bacon wrote about these effective study strategies in the 1500’s – and the research is proving that we should have been listening to the preachers of this all along,” says Aaron Richardson, founder of Smart Student Secrets, a decade old, religiously followed, website dedicated to reintroducing these strategies to modern students.

“The reality is, the average university spends 4 years lecturing a student on what they could master in 6 months or less – if they used effective strategies.”

Confronting Mr. Richardson, I grilled him on the academic defenses of our country’s historic and prestigious Universities.

R: Doesn’t the work separate the wheat from the chaff? Give them work and those that best do it are better BECAUSE they worked harder to do it. The hard work itself is the target.

A: Assuming the wheat is the people that mindlessly follow directions and don’t have better things to do with their time… sure. But I’m advocating for the creative thinkers that are willing to challenge the status quo. They’re the wheat I’m giving my tools to.

R: But colleges say your strategies help you score higher on tests but not “understand” the material in a deeper way. Any response?

A: First thing, in academia, you’re judged on your ability to pass tests and answer questions – they have no other way. By their own standards, their strategies are worse.

Second, mull on any idea for a few years longer and you’ll have a deeper understanding of it. That’s the easy part. You do it every time you take a shower. The hard part is learning enough of the component parts to be able to mull it over. The sooner you do that, the sooner you can understand it deeper.

And one more thing…

I don’t really care if they criticize because the data speaks for itself. I advocate for the data their own studies are proving. They may be able to hide the truth for a while but it’s getting out and the longer they hold out, the worse it’s going to look for them – not me.

R: Mr. Richardson you have recently published a guide outlining his effective strategies in detail. It’s called, “How To Study Happier,” and has a 4 star review from students and some reviews making some pretty impressive claims. Right?

A: I’ve dedicated my life to helping students that are like the kid I used to be. And I guarantee that my book can help you get better grades – and if you’re not 100% satisfied with the changes then I’ll refund it completely. Show me one college that will do that for you!

R: So… Mr. Richardson, I’ve heard you’ve been taking some heat from academia over your claims.

A: For legal reasons, I have to keep my mouth shut on this one. All I can say is that I can’t guarantee my content will stay available much longer. Get it now or prices will be higher for legal reasons (if I can even keep the book available.)

Now is the time to click on the link I’ll add below, fill in the boxes, and get your copy today if you’re interested.

Get your copy of How To Study Happier

 

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