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7 Hidden But Powerful Qualities of Successful Students

7 Hidden But Powerful Qualities of Successful Students

Student life can be one of the most important stages in a person’s life, everyone is getting into a race now a days to become top in their field. It is essential to being a lifelong learner in order to move ahead in life. But unfortunately, we stop formal learning after we complete school or college and then we complain why things are not changing. But, if we effectively pursue some of the good habits right from the student life, mastering any skills and getting ahead becomes much easier. Here are seven habits that good students have:

1. Curiosity

Ask any successful person in this world and they will tell you that the first way they started any worthwhile project was by getting curious. This is the most understated yet essential quality for getting ahead in life. Curiosity leads to discovery and innovation. For students, start with being curious about subjects and absorbing information as it is presented to you.

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2. Observation

When you are curious about any person, observe how he does what he does. When you curious about any work, observe how it is being done. And watch how mistakes are made, rectified, and corrected. Observe how successful decisions are made. After observing, you have to apply those lessons to yourself and get feedback. For students, observe how the successful students in your class does, how do they excel, and how are their habits different from your own. Once you have observed this differences, you should know exactly where to start.

3. Ask questions

When you are curious and you observe something, there comes a time when you don’t understand how it is being done or some of the basics are not clear. At this time, you have to ask questions like, “How is it done with so little effort?”, “How can I start doing this in my life?”, “What can I learn from this?”, “Which people I have to meet to start doing this in my life?”

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When you ask questions like this, you stretch your imagination; you discover things about yourself which you didn’t knew previously. For students, ask questions to your teachers, parents, friends and any person you meet. Asking questions is a natural, yet essential, part of learning. All good students know when to listen and then when to probe for further information.

4. Willpower

When you observe with curiosity and ask questions, you will uncover things you never had before. But there will be times when you don’t feel like doing it and let it go. At such times, you have to use your willpower and decide to get things done. You have to believe in yourself that you’ll get answers no matter how much are feeling low or rejected. When you use your willpower and keep going, you’ll see amazing results. Learning something new takes willpower and persistence.

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5. Discipline

Because mastery is found in consistently taking disciplined action. Learning a new language, studying a new subject, or learning about a career all takes discipline. You can only master something with persistent effort. Some good students stick to a schedule, like setting aside a specific number of hours per day to study.

6. Take action

When you take action, you learn a lot more than you learn with just reading or listening. Even if you act without thinking, you learn a lot about the subject compared to everyone else who just reads. You have to be fearless about taking tests, getting feedback, and improving yourself day by day. The most effective way to learn is by doing. You can only read so many books about swimming until you simply have to jump in the pool.

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7. Remove distractions

No matter how you condition yourself for success, you will still have to remove everyday distractions to get ahead. These days our attention spans have gone short because distractions are always there to stop us to focus on our work. But successful know that in order to benefit most from their habits, they need to remove distractions effectively, they need to channel their energies in a way that they get most from their effort. Simple tasks like putting away your cell phone or not watching TV while studying all help you get ahead.

Apart form all the old age advice of hard work, keep your focus on developing these seven attributes and you’ll be soon heading toward a successful career as a student.

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Dhaval Gajera

Author and Speaker.

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Last Updated on November 15, 2019

How Do You Change a Habit (According to Psychology)

How Do You Change a Habit (According to Psychology)

Habits are hard to kill, and rightly so. They are a part and parcel of your personality traits and mold your character.

However, habits are not always something over-the-top and quirky enough to get noticed. Think of subtle habits like tapping fingers when you are nervous and humming songs while you drive. These are nothing but ingrained habits that you may not realize easily.

Just take a few minutes and think of something specific that you do all the time. You will notice how it has become a habit for you without any explicit realization. Everything you do on a daily basis starting with your morning routine, lunch preferences to exercise routines are all habits.

Habits mostly form from life experiences and certain observed behaviors, not all of them are healthy. Habitual smoking can be dangerous to your health. Similarly, a habit could also make you lose out on enjoying something to its best – like how some people just cannot stop swaying their bodies when delivering a speech.

Thus, there could be a few habits that you would want to change about yourself. But changing habits is not as easy as it seems, why?

What Makes It Hard To Change A Habit?

To want to change a particular habit means to change something very fundamental about your behavior.[1] Hence, it’s necessary to understand how habits actually form and why they are so difficult to actually get out of.

The Biology

Habits form in a place what we call the subconscious mind in our brain.[2]

Our brains have two modes of operation. The first one is an automatic pilot kind of system that is fast and works on reflexes often. It is what we call the subconscious part. This is the part that is associated with everything that comes naturally to you.

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The second mode is the conscious mode where every action and decision is well thought out and follows a controlled way of thinking.

A fine example to distinguish both would be to consider yourself learning to drive or play an instrument. For the first time you try learning, you think before every movement you make. But once you have got the hang of it, you might drive without applying much thought into it.

Both systems work together in our brains at all times. When a habit is formed, it moves from the conscious part to the subconscious making it difficult to control.

So, the key idea in deconstructing a habit is to go from the subconscious to the conscious.

Another thing you have to understand about habits is that they can be conscious or hidden.

Conscious habits are those that require active input from your side. For instance, if you stop setting your alarm in the morning, you will stop waking up at the same time.

Hidden habits, on the other hand, are habits that we do without realizing. These make up the majority of our habits and we wouldn’t even know them until someone pointed them out. So the first difficulty in breaking these habits is to actually identify them. As they are internalized, they need a lot of attention to detail for self-identification. That’s not all.

Habits can be physical, social, and mental, energy-based and even be particular to productivity. Understanding them is necessary to know why they are difficult to break and what can be done about them.

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The Psychology

Habits get engraved into our memories depending on the way we think, feel and act over a particular period of time. The procedural part of memory deals with habit formation and studies have observed that various types of conditioning of behavior could affect your habit formations.

Classical conditioning or pavlovian conditioning is when you start associating a memory with reality.[3] A dog that associates ringing bell to food will start salivating. The same external stimuli such as the sound of church bells can make a person want to pray.

Operant conditioning is when experience and the feelings associated with it form a habit.[4] By encouraging or discouraging an act, individuals could either make it a habit or stop doing it.

Observational learning is another way habits could take form. A child may start walking the same way their parent does.

What Can You Do To Change a Habit?

Sure, habits are hard to control but it is not impossible. With a few tips and hard-driven dedication, you can surely get over your nasty habits.

Here are some ways that make use of psychological findings to help you:

1. Identify Your Habits

As mentioned earlier, habits can be quite subtle and hidden from your view. You have to bring your subconscious habits to an aware state of mind. You could do it by self-observation or by asking your friends or family to point out the habit for your sake.

2. Find out the Impact of Your Habit

Every habit produces an effect – either physical or mental. Find out what exactly it is doing to you. Does it help you relieve stress or does it give you some pain relief?

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It could be anything simple. Sometimes biting your nails could be calming your nerves. Understanding the effect of a habit is necessary to control it.

3. Apply Logic

You don’t need to be force-fed with wisdom and advice to know what an unhealthy habit could do to you.

Late-night binge-watching just before an important presentation is not going to help you. Take a moment and apply your own wisdom and logic to control your seemingly nastily habits.

4. Choose an Alternative

As I said, every habit induces some feeling. So, it could be quite difficult to get over it unless you find something else that can replace it. It can be a simple non-harming new habit that you can cultivate to get over a bad habit.

Say you have the habit of banging your head hard when you are angry. That’s going to be bad for you. Instead, the next time you are angry, just take a deep breath and count to 10. Or maybe start imagining yourself on a luxury yacht. Just think of something that will work for you.

5. Remove Triggers

Get rid of items and situations that can trigger your bad habit.

Stay away from smoke breaks if you are trying to quit it. Remove all those candy bars from the fridge if you want to control your sweet cravings.

6. Visualize Change

Our brains can be trained to forget a habit if we start visualizing the change. Serious visualization is retained and helps as a motivator in breaking the habit loop.

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For instance, to replace your habit of waking up late, visualize yourself waking up early and enjoying the early morning jog every day. By continuing this, you would naturally feel better to wake up early and do your new hobby.

7. Avoid Negative Talks and Thinking

Just as how our brain is trained to accept a change in habit, continuous negative talk and thinking could hamper your efforts put into breaking a habit.

Believe you can get out of it and assert yourself the same.

Final Thoughts

Changing habits isn’t easy, so do not expect an overnight change!

Habits took a long time to form. It could take a while to completely break out of it. You will have to accept that sometimes you may falter in your efforts. Don’t let negativity seep in when it seems hard. Keep going at it slowly and steadily.

More About Changing Habits

Featured photo credit: Mel via unsplash.com

Reference

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