Active-Class was designed to help students and teachers alike cope easier with education in the modern world. The Active-Class blog does the same. As such, you might want to save this blog post for the inevitable days when you feel down and sad at university, because I’m sorry to say that will happen at some point. But feeling good and being satisfied in learning is critical for your university success.
I’ve already done lots of Mindset posts (starting with What Is The University Mindset?), but this focuses more on feeling good and being satisfied with yourself.
Why Is This Important?
It all comes down to engagement and motivation. Since if you feel sad and like you’re wasting your time then you don’t be engaged in your studies and you won’t have the motivation to learn. Leading to you learning less, not bothering with university and your grades will almost certainly fall.
I don’t want that for you. You don’t want that for yourself.
This is why we need to talk about how to feel good and being self-satisfied with your learning.
Reasons and Solutions For Why You’re Not Feeling Good Or Self-Satisfied With Your Learning?
I remember when I was feeling down about learning and university as a whole, it tended to be down to these main factors.
Not Doing Well On An Assignment:
This one is major for me personally and I know it is for a lot of people. Since I am a good student (or try to be), meaning I work hard, do the reading and everything else that a good student is meant to do. Including working hard on assignments, be it essays, exams or reports.
So whenever my essay grades come back, I felt so down and disappointed, and after a few essay scores… well, they just became annoying.
This was especially true during my second year because I tried everything. I researched essay writing, I talked to other students and seminar leaders and I got my friend to give me his essay from the last project so I could see what he did. (Bear in mind he got an 85 on his essay)
I looked through it, made notes, I did everything.
I wrote an essay, really hoping to improve my essay writing (not that it could get much worse) and I got my results.
And I got a 58.
2 points away from a 60!
I was not impressed so I felt down and I wasn’t satisfied in my learning whatsoever.
Now the reason why I’m being so honest with you is simple. Even people (like me) who know these topics like the back of their hands, don’t always do well on essays. Therefore, this is partly a remind about everyone struggles with essays from time to time.
However, the second part is, I’m still here, enjoying university and learning.
I recovered from these blows by focusing on the future since everything I do for my degree will benefit me in the future. Since I’ll be able to go on to do a Masters, maybe a PhD and then get a good job potentially.
Then I focused on the smaller details because I had improved with that score of 58 (no I won’t tell you what I was originally but it was still in the 50s thank you very much). Therefore, I knew I needed to focus on the small victory of improving just a little bit.
And if I can improve once. I can do it again, and again, and again.
Overall, when you’re feeling down, focus on the long term and what you have learnt from experience. Due to from my essay experience, I now know a better structure for essay writing so even though I haven’t done as well as I wanted to, I still improved and I was learning.
So-called Boring Topics:
Let’s face it, there will be topics we don’t enjoy at university, but they’re part of the syllabus so you have to learn them. Also sometimes the topic themselves won’t be boring, it’s the way the lecturer is talking about them.
However, when you come across a boring topic, your engagement levels will drop and you will believe that you’re wasting your time. Because why should you be learning this topic when you could be doing other things?
I remember this happening to me a few times and the solutions were simple.
Firstly, I made myself power through because of the long term focus, I knew this pain and suffering would help me in the future. As if it was in an exam then I’ll be able to answer questions on it, get a higher mark and improve my degree overall.
Secondly, I didn’t procrastinate. I think procrastinating is probably the worse thing you could do in this situation because the longer you have this boring topic waiting for you to do, the less productive you’ll be. As this boring work will be on your mind and it will suck the enjoyment out of your day until you do it. Which is why I recommend just getting it done.
Finally, notice how throughout this section I’ve put the word boring in italics. That’s because nothing is actually boring, it’s all a mindset to you and what’s boring to you might be fascinating to someone else. I know lots of people find Statistics boring, but I know people who find it interesting. (And no, I have no idea why)
Overall, some others for helping you feel good and self-satisfied with your learning is focus on the long term, don’t procrastinate and change your mind around boredom.
Tools like Active-Class look to help students. It can really help you to manage your time, keep on top of things and plan your time better. This is great for feeling good in your learning because it means you won’t be overwhelmed as you’ll be able to manage your time better.
Active-Class will also allow you to see what you need to do, what topics you need to cover and what tasks you have left, allowing you to plan better and keep on top of your tasks. Meaning that Active-Class allows you to eliminate three stressors that would cause you to feel down and not satisfied with your learning.
To wrap up this post, I need to remind you that there will be times at university and in life in general that you feel down and not satisfied with your learning. This is normal and I hope through being so honest with you that I’ve helped you to accept that more.
Therefore, when you feel like this, try the following solutions:
- Focus on the long term
- Focus on the smaller details to see you’ve learnt something and improved.
- Don’t procrastinate
- Change your Mindset around boredom
- Use Active-Class
- Use the Active-Class blog
- Check out “Keeping Yourself Happy During Learning”
Learning isn’t meant to be boring. Learning is amazing, fun and mind opening so enjoy it and embrace learning!