Start Early. Start Smart.
By starting early, we do not want you to start years or many months in advance. We are only talking about that ‘little extra’. We are asking you to “start few minutes early this hour, few hours early this day and few days early this month and before you know it, you will have enough time to do it well”. - Dr. Nishanth B Singh
Sounds good? Here are a few tips for getting started.
- Choose your hero? When entering the war zone with no clue whatsoever, having someone to a guide you is a boon. Connect with people who understand you and will be there when you need them.
- Collect all the basic study materials early. Talking to your seniors, reading interviews with toppers and book reviews on online stores can help you filter the music from the noise. And being a student friendly seller of testprep books & courses, we can share some secrets with you,
i. If you are preparing for the second time, do not get all worried and giddy about the new edition that is out. Books like Master Update by Zakir Hussain Sheikh and Pharma updates by Ranjan Kumar Patel can help you cover the latest developments
ii. Do keep an eye for new books. Some new books are better than the popular ones. For instance, you may like Biochemistry Wave, Concepts in Pathology, Review of Physiology etc if you check them out. If you follow the herd, you wouldn’t get further than the herd.
- Plan your diet. Healthy food has an effect on triggering positive emotions and mental state. For instance, if you drink coffee every morning before going to study, drinking coffee will automatically make your body and mind prepare for study. That can be used as a positive trigger as suggested by Pavlov!
- Make time for hobbies. Do not ignore your hobbies. They will keep your mind sharp and refreshed. Based on your time table, you can allot a couple of hours each week for your hobby. Also, set a time in your time table not to do anything and relax! This is more important in the initial days, when you are just learning to dance.
- Keep in touch with your loved ones and friends. Some people just completely fall off from the grid. Though it is good not to get distracted it is also not good to get isolated. Talk to your friends and family. Go out for a coffee. Walk your dog. Go visit your grandparents etc. It could make you happy and do wonders to your brain.
- Plan your lessons, not your time. Your plans should not be “i will study till 2 pm" it should be "i will study 2 lessons" and the difference is actually phenomenal.
- Reward yourself. Finished that long chapter, give your brain a 15 min break to enjoy the milestone.
- Make a plan with actionable milestones. Actionable milestones or goals are super important because they work. I have 3 months to study 3 subjects and each subject needs 3 weeks. I will study one subject for 3 weeks, take a break and then revise for 3 days. See the point?
- Always and always have a plan B. Unpredictable things like bad weather, family emergency or health problems may hinder your study session. Always have a plan B in your mind, if not on paper. It will make sure that you don't lose your confidence.
An early start allows you to enjoy learning without being bugged by time. A smart start puts you on the path to success right from day one. So, what are you waiting for?
Did we miss out on anything important regarding getting started? Please share your personal study tips and tricks in the comments.