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6 Ways To Maximize Learning

Monday, January 21st, 2008

maximize learning

Here’s how to gain the most from training events.

  • Know what you want

Before the workshop, set learning goals for yourself. What do you want to learn? How can this program help you? What would make you feel that your time was well spent?

  • Ask for what you want

As the program unfolds, ask questions that guide the presentation toward the information that you need. Also, seek out specific ideas that will help you.

  • Focus on your success

Rather than fight against new ideas, greet them as possibilities. If the ideas seem unworkable, seek out ways to modify them so that you can use them. Or find parts of them that you can use.

  • Encourage the speaker

Learning succeeds best when you become involved. Thus, ask questions, make comments, participate in the projects. Pay attention. Let the speaker know that you are interested. This encourages the speaker to do a better job.

  • Care for yourself

Keep your body comfortable so that your mind can absorb mo

re. Take a brisk walk during breaks. This increases your heart rate, which pumps fresh blood through your brain. Avoid eating a large, heavy meal. This sends blood to your stomach and away from your brain.

  • Be grateful

Thank the speaker after the program. Either write a note or stay to express your appreciation. Also thank the people who organized the event in your company. Seek them out to express your thanks

Think Like A Genius

Wednesday, January 9th, 2008


Even if you’re not a genius, you can use the same strategies as Aristotle and Einstein to harness the power of your creative mind and better manage your future.”

The following eight strategies encourage you to think productively, rather than reproductively, in order to arrive at solutions to problems. “These strategies are common to the thinking styles of creative geniuses in science, art, and industry throughout history.”

  • Look at problems in many different ways, and find new perspectives that no one else has taken (or no one else has publicized!)
  • Visualize!
  • Produce! A distinguishing characteristic of genius is productivity.
  • Make novel combinations. Combine, and recombine, ideas, images, and thoughts into different combinations no matter how incongruent or unusual.
  • Form relationships; make connections between dissimilar subjects.
  • Think in opposite
  • Think metaphorically
  • Prepare yourself for chance.

Whenever we attempt to do something and fail, we end up doing something else. That is the first principle of creative accident. Failure can be productive only if we do not focus on it as an unproductive result. Instead: analyze the process, its components, and how you can change them, to arrive at other results. Do not ask the question “Why have I failed?”, but rather “What have I done?”


Wednesday, January 9th, 2008

Self-discipline can be considered a type of selective training, creating new habits of thought, action, and speech toward improving yourself and reaching goals.  Self-discipline can also be task oriented and selective. View self-discipline as positive effort, rather than one of denial. 

Schedule a small task for a given time of the day; Practice deliberate delaying.

  • Schedule a particular task in the morning and once in the evening.
  • The task should not take more than 15 minutes.
  • Wait for the exact scheduled time.
  • When the schedule time is due, start the task.
  • Stick to the schedule for at least two months.
  • Schedule a task and hold to its time;
  • Avoid acting on impulse.
  • Track your progress;
  • At the end of the allotted time, keep a record of accomplishment that builds over time.
  • If you begin to have surplus time, fill it with small tasks, make notes to yourself, plan other tasks, e

Harness the power of routine.

  • Instead of devoting a lot of hours one day, and none the other and then a few on an another day and so on, allocate a specific time period each day of the week for that task.
  • Hold firm.
  • Don’t set a goal other than time allocation,
  • simply set the habit of routine.
  • Apply this technique to your homework or your projects, you will be on your way to getting things done

Use self discipline to explore time management 

Time management can become an overwhelming task. When you do not have control over your own self, how can you control time? Begin with task-oriented self-discipline and build from there.

Maintain a self-discipline log book.

  • Record the start and end times of the tasks.
  • Review for feedback on your progress

Schedule your work day and studies.

  • When you first begin your work day, or going to work take a few minutes and write down on a piece of paper the tasks that you want to accomplish for that day.
  • Prioritize the list.
  • Immediately start working on the most important one.
  • Try it for a few days to see if the habit works for you.
  • Habits form over time:  how much time depends on you and the habit.


  • Do not be intimidated; do not be put off by the challenge
  • If you slip, remember this is natural
  • Take a break and then refresh the challenge


  • Associate a new habit with an old one. If you drink coffee, make that first cup the time to write out and prioritize your tasks. 

Role models:

  • Observe the people in your life and see to what extent self discipline and habits help them accomplish goals. Ask them for advice on what works, what does not.

How To Increase Your Concentration Power

Friday, January 4th, 2008

The power of concentration is a skill that is easy to master, that is if you have the willpower to do so.


The following are helpful tips to improve your ability to concentrate in the best way possible. These suggestions apply whether you are in the office busy with work, school, business meeting, or if you are trying to finish a particular project.

  • Do five more

There are actually two types of persons in the world: those who know how to go through in eliminating frustration and those who wish they are able to work through it. Focus and concentrate in doing just five more things. This sort of mantra is best said when you feel like giving up.

For instance, if you feel like you no longer want to read or write any more pages, tell yourself to do just five pages more. Finish just five more math questions. Stay five minutes more on the treadmill. Take note that athletes build their own physical prowess by pushing their bodies to the point of exhaustion while they develop mental stamina.

  • Take one step at one time

There are instances when you feel like your mind is loaded with many ideas like that of a scatterbrain. The key is to control your brain. Rather worrying on many matters, prioritize tasks and do only those that are needed.

  • Train yourself to have tunnel vision

You could actually cup your hands around your own eyes. This could serve as a trigger to tell your mind to focus on a particular responsibility. For example, you are in a room and you need to study but there are many things prevent you from concentrating. Cupping your own hands around your own eyes could help your brain to switch to focus mode and keep it on its track.

  • Have a handy pad

When a thought pops inside your head and this causes you to lose focus, jot down this thought immediately. Writing it down is an effective way to get it out of your mind. After which, consciously focus on the task that you need to accomplish at the moment.

  • Take a break

Remember that you are not a machine. You need to take a break to be able to focus on the task that you have to do.

Taking breaks is a good way to break down the tasks into parts that are a lot more manageable. You may take a walk outside or eat lunch out.

  • Record your start and end times

When doing work, try to record the time you began and the time when you mind begins to drift. Doing so helps you know just how much time you spent doing actual work and the time when you start losing your concentration

  • Vary your activities

It is advisable to vary the activities you do in order to keep your mind active and not bored. A bored mind will just easily float and drift away to oblivion.

All in all, these activities and tips need to be practiced regularly to be able to concentrate and focus in the things that really matters most for you.

Books - Every Teen Should Read

Thursday, January 3rd, 2008

teen book reading

Here is a list of books that every teen should read.

  • Lord of the Flies by William Golding

This classic allegorical novel provides a biting commentary on group dynamics and Darwin’s survival of the fittest theory. Set on a desert island, a group of English boys are stranded after a plane crash and left to govern themselves.

  • One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey

A compelling story set in an Oregon asylum, this novel depicts how people cope with being institutionalized. The narrator, a schizophrenic American Indian called “Chief” Bromden, describes the antics of a cheerfully rebellious man named Randle Patrick McMurphy, who has been sent to this mental hospital from a work farm prison. When I taught this novel, students described it as being a real page-turning with many twists and turns.

  • The Awakening by Kate Chopin

Originally published in 1899, this novel describes one woman’s struggle to fulfill her potential in a patriarchal society that expects woman to solely fulfill their roles as wife and mother. Once considered highly controversial, this short novel exposes teens to social issues as well as gender roles and expectations.

  • The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

An easy read, this novel is a classic story of young brothers growing up on the wrong side of the tracks. Though its characterization, The Outsiders encourages teens to think about stereotypes and the definition of family.

  • Catcher in the Rye by J.D

Salinger Loved by teens and adults alike, this novel is still dubbed controversial but is also considered one of the most famous literary works of the 20th century. Holden Caulfield, the protagonist, tells his story in first person and conveys his experiences after being expelled from Pence Prep.

  • Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neal Hurston

This novel, told in an extended flashback, takes place in the early 20th century and is set in central southern Florida. Teens will enjoy the realistic black Southern dialect. Janie Crawford, the main character, reflects on her life, which has three major periods corresponding to her marriages to three men. “Their Eyes Were Watching God is a multi-layered novel, which garnered attention and controversy at the time, but remains one of the most important books revealing the origins of black culture and heritage”.

  • A Child Called “It”: One Child’s Courage to Survive by Dave Pelzer

This is a disturbing autobiography depicting the harsh reality of child abuse. Dave Pelzer explains how he was brutally beaten and starved by his alcoholic mother, who played tortuous games that nearly left him dead. Teens who have told me they read this book confessed it changed their lives, but is probably more appropriate for older teens considering the topic.

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