I’m always surprised by the depths that people will go to fool themselves.
People hate to hear the truth.
They want to hear the pleasant dripping of the rain on their tin roof but they never want to step out into the rain to feel it on their face.
That’s kind of an abstract metaphor. I want to start making fun of myself now. I’m such a loser sometimes.
Here is the thing…
Teachers are usually teachers because they have positive feelings about school growing up.
For me, going into a school is kind of like stepping into a boiling cauldron and waving to the witches as they drop tongue of frog and eye of newt into the rank concoction. I can feel my skin melting off but I’m trying to be cool about the whole thing (because logically I know witches don’t exist.)
Teachers don’t have that same reaction to school. In fact, they’re willing to go back to it.
We’ve certainly had different experiences with school. It makes sense we feel a little differently about it.
The Email That Prompted This Rant
I got an email from a student that got lectured by his teacher.
The student (made the mistake) of being honest with the teacher and the teacher decided to stomp on the student’s foot to try and hobble him.
The student talked to the teacher about how he found the class easy. The student admitted to not studying for the class. The student told me he was getting A’s anyway.
These are all things that I wouldn’t recommend telling any teacher.
Like I said earlier in this article, people don’t always want to know the truth. Common politeness dictates we keep our mouths zipped tight about certain subjects.
And the teacher dropped the metaphorical gauntlet and shot out the classic, “It’s not just about the grades. It’s about what you learn.”
Sure… it’s true… but how is what you learn measured…
The teacher then went into a rant about how the student needs to work hard in his class because it’s more about working hard than scoring high. The teacher apparently included a few rude comments that I don’t plan on repeating.
I know this seems rather innocuous but it’s important.
“Working hard” isn’t measurable.
It’s a feeling.
Learning Is Not Hard Work
Learning isn’t synonymous with hard work.
You can work hard and learn absolutely nothing. You can slack off and learn a lot.
The teacher made this poisonous lecture in front of a full class of students. And it is poison.
The only place where you can argue hard work is more important than smart work is in a factory putting widgets together. We’re getting past that point in history. Soon widgets will be the domain of the robots.
If you can find a way to get the same measurable results with less work then you’re a winner.
You’re making the world a better place. You’re innovating. You’re giving birth to the future. You’re a hero in my book. That means people have more time to do more good stuff other than that.
That room of students will now have the teacher lecturing in the back of their minds when they start trying to think of a better way. And odds are, they’ll never give the better way a chance because they’re so damn tired.
I Want You To Think
I don’t want you to work hard.
I think too many people try to work hard.
Working hard is stressful. It makes you less happy. It wears you down. It tires you out. And it makes you less effective at everything you do.
What if you studied less?
Would you get worse grades?
Believe it or not, my work in studying has mostly shown the opposite (for students that already study regularly.)
When students study less, they focus harder. They care more. They learn which strategies work, and which strategies don’t.
They improve their lives with less but better work.
Why Does No One Ever Talk About Easy Work
I work a lot of hours. I spent just about 70 hours a week on professional projects. By most folks definition, I’m hard-working. I’ve regularly been called a workaholic.
The thing is… I’m not a hard worker.
All the work I do is easy to me. (Okay… most of it… I’m human and fall into the trap of “working hard” once in a while but it doesn’t help.)
I don’t force myself to do it (most of the time.) I want to do it. I enjoy producing the results. I take pleasure from the stuff to the point that I’m looking for excuses to do it. I like it.
I don’t have to work. I want to work.
This is what I want for you…
I want you to learn the pleasures of studying and learning and even taking tests. This stuff can straight-up feel good. You can like it.
Does that sound crazy?
I get it. I would have never understood this while I was younger.
Want To Know How?
Meh… It’s easier to explain how to never enjoy studying, school, or taking tests.
If you study long hours every night, you’re going to hate studying.
If you struggle with concepts for hours without taking a break, you’re going to hate learning.
If you study for tests you’re already prepared for just so you can turn a 95 into a 96 then you’re going to hate it!
Okay… maybe not everyone. Somewhere out there you’ll find an exception to those specific rules but I’m making a point.
You can’t make something miserable in every possible way and expect to enjoy yourself. You shouldn’t even expect yourself to do something miserable begrudgingly.
Just don’t do it.
I know people will lecture you about hard work. I know people will tell you that you can do better. (You can but that’s your choice. And hell, better in one way usually means worse somewhere else.)
You have an extraordinary opportunity to enjoy your life. Deal with the measurable factors in class and your life will improve dramatically.
And fortunately, it will help you ignore the immeasurable junk that will just distract you from happiness.
This is an absolutely essential read for anyone on this blog.
I’m about 4 hours away from something big.
The story began a decade ago when I first started to share my study strategies with other students.
I had figured out the Holy Grail of academic optimization strategies – and every intermediate step to get to it. Using this strategy, I pulled a nearly 4.0 GPA while running a double course load in college – and once I started sharing it.
Droves of them.
And then teachers noticed.
Most of the teachers that were looking out for their student’s best interest got what I was saying and supported the cause. Others… well… not everyone has the student’s best interest at heart.
Early on (even before Smart Student Secrets,) I started writing for average students.
I knew… I was NEVER one of the “smart kids”. I was mediocre at best. And I knew, if these strategies worked for me then they could work for just about anybody. And that’s who I wanted to connect with.
But… There was a problem…
I built an audience giving these strategies away. Sure…
And I’d get messages from them. And we’d talk. And I’d hear their stories.
I’d hear from A+ students that cut their study time by 90%.
I’d hear from B students that took their grades up to A’s.
I’d hear from teachers that were sharing my strategies with their students.
I’d hear from older students how these strategies changed their life.
I love it. I love introducing these strategies that changed my life to other people.
But there was always this… but…
What about the C students?
What about the D students?
What about the students that are currently failing?
Sure… Some would reach out.. but…
They never followed through… They’d take a small step. They’d sign up. They’d learn some killer strategies. Seeing right there how powerful they were going to be…
And then… life kicks in. They lose sight of their goals.
And it’s gone.
Student’s came to this site to improve their life. They see the possibilities. But then… they move on.
In about 4 hours, I’m going to be introducing something – an email subscriber exclusive – that can help change that.
It’s going to make more Smart Students than at any other time in this site’s history.
If you’re ready to take your academic game to the next level – if you want to see it for yourself.
Write your email in the box. Check the confirmation you want emails. Confirm your email. And see for yourself.