How to Stop Procrastinating : 6 Tips

I know. We all are very creative to come up with excuses to satisfy our habit of procrastination. No wonder we mostly end up with an unfinished or haphazardly finished product with lesser value. But once you experience the feeling of fulfillment after finishing your task ahead of deadline you might never want to procrastinate again.

But how to stop procrastinating if you have been a chronic procrastinator? Here are the 6 tips to stop procrastinating right away. But before you delve into the tips you need to forgive yourself for your procrastinating habit in the past. Studies show, forgiving yourself makes it less likely to procrastinate in future.

1. List down goals:

Listing down your goal helps beating the habit of procrastination.

You’ll never complete your assignments if you don’t write them down and get a clear view of how much is needed to be done. I prefer writing down the tasks on paper but you can still use planner or calendar apps and keep track of your goals.

You can start off with goals which are not too simple or not too hard. Remember most of our tasks are not as difficult as we imagine them to be. If your goals are big and vague or difficult to achieve right away, you’ll end up shoving it off out of the fear of the end result. Small goals will make your goals look less intimidating and achievable and when they’re stacked up all together it will form a huge project.

Example: Instead of thinking I’ll study maths today,say, I’ll study chapter 5 which is ‘Integration’. Be specific.

2. Create a schedule:

Time yourself and create a schedule to achieve your goals in time.

Create a timeline and allot fixated time for each tasks. In most of the cases the tasks take longer than the time imagined. However, since the tasks have specific dates and small chunks of time,you’ll automatically be triggered to complete those. You will finish the tasks just because you’ll feel the urge to check those off.

3. Get rid of distractions:

Don’t let distractions help you justifying your procrastinating habit.

You need to identify the potentially disruptive elements. You can shut off your internet connection if it is not necessary in order for you to work. You can listen to white noise to do away with unnecessary noises. Or,you can simply go to the library. No matter what,our workplace can never be perfect,thus looking for one is a wastage of time. Yet,we can create an atmosphere to increase concentration by cleaning our workspace, wearing comfortable clothes,fulfilling our biological needs and optimising our workspace for the specific task we intend to start.

4. Use Pomodoro Technique:

Pomodoro technique is an effective way to come out of procrastination and get the work done

Set your timer for 25 minutes and take a 5 minutes break. This is kind of a mental breather. Mostly it is quite a stimulator since it is easy to start a work where you’ll get a 5 minutes break in every 25 minutes. Although within the first 25 minutes you’ll be accustomed and absorbed to the work. Thus you might hardly need that 5 minutes break. But it is always better to take some break after every 60 minutes. During the break you can walk,listen to music and do anything that gives you a feeling of relaxation.

5. Reward Yourself:

Rewards help us in being enthusiastic to finish off a task.

Reward yourself for every single goal you achieve. Set an incentive for a goal to be accomplished. For example, “I’ll visit my favourite place if I get admitted to X college.” or as simple as “I’ll watch this movie if I finish the essay.” This trick never fails.

6. Get the hardest task done:

When you finish off the hardest task,you overcome the fear. Thus every task after it seems easier and takes less time. If you push back the hardest one,you’ll never get it done.

Along with this tips,you must overcome some mental barriers as a chronic procrastinator. Stop telling yourself “I work better under pressure” and justifying your habit of procrastinating. Also don’t think that you’re not starting off because the work is boring. The truth is even the job you’re passionate about will have a boring aspect,so it is just you putting off your tasks. Also don’t be a perfectionist and try to produce a perfect job. It is an ego centric view and quite discouraging to start off with any work.


Things You Must Do in Your 20’s

20s is the most significant decade of our lifecycle. We lose the essence of childhood in the rush of choosing an ideal career, getting into a job,earning enough money to take over responsibilities,choose our life partner and what not. We are so much into following the norms and shaping up our lives as early as possible,that we hardly ever get a chance to introspect our activities. So,if you’re in your 20’s,here is a list of things to remind you about the things you’re missing out and must take care of.

1. Take Care of Your Mental Health:

It’s true that you have to take care of a lot of things and sometimes they really get over head. You will definitely feel the stress and might want to give up on your goals. Therefore,this is the ideal time to look after your mental health as well. You should seek haven to meditation,deep breathing exercises, gratitude journals and like to declutter your mind. Reserve a significant amount of time every day or week to mark the habits or activities or people that is affecting you. Chalk out how you can get over them and can create a better mental health routine. You should not take your mental health for granted and just let every unnecessary events of your life to affect you effortlessly. Cut down the people and associations that weigh you down. Don’t let the trivialities take hold on to the mind.

2. Chase your Dream Job:

Not sure what to do with your life? Here are 10 simple tips to find your true passion.

In your 20s you are in a hurry to get into any job since your friends are already financially stabilized. But get this straight- not every job offer is an opportunity and you should carefully analyse which job is going to lead you to the path of your ultimate goal. Take your time after graduation. Identify your skills or develop one and look for the job that you’re confident about. While there might be financial crisis,you can develop a skill that is sellable and simultaneously work towards your goal. If you want to start a business,this is the best time to do so. Don’t think you’re too young since different ages have their own advantages. 20s is the best time to take risks in your career since there are less responsibilities. While you’re aging,you might face a lot of inner and outer resistance which will bury your dreams forever. So start chasing your dreams now!

3. Travel:

Most often people wait for their retirement and their bank balance to be sufficient to plan for travelling. But are you sure you’ll be able to live that long or be physically fit to cover all those heavenly destinations? Therefore,start now. You should enrich yourself with all those wild experiences and mixture of culture to boost your confidence and broaden your horizon. You might even opt for travelling alone,you will develop communication skills and ability to tackle any adverse situation. Life is fully lived when you get out of your comfort zone.

4. Make Time for your Friends:

You will find it quite difficult to keep up with your relationships. The struggle is real since you have to take care of numerous things. Mostly you’ll find your friends busy in their new job. This should not fool you to wait for them to get in touch with you. Friendships are important. No matter how busy you become you need the guidance and assurance of the people who want the very best for you. When you grow up true bondings become rarer and you really struggle to find someone to depend upon. Money can be earned but damaged relationships rarely get their old glow. Thus,start calling your friends,meet them,fix a travel plan with them,help them and get in touch with them whenever possible. Time spent for nurturing friendships is never a waste.

5. Live on Your Own:

In your 20s you must not rely upon your parent’s money and rather help them with your money. You should be responsible for your life. You should start paying your bills,take loans which are to be paid by you. You should make sure in any way possible,that you are not depending on your parents and being a burden to them. They have guided you enough and now it’s your duty to make them feel relieved.

6. Love Yourself:

Start your Self Love journey here.

Now in your 20s you’ll struggle the most in your relationships. You’ll seek attention and your confidence will be derived from other’s validation. Therefore it’s necessary that you identify the need to fulfill yourself to be giving in a relationship. You should be aware that you know your priorities,you are capable of identifying if your energy is being wasted in a relationship. Therefore,spend time with yourself and take care of yourself. Only when you radiate positive energy,you will attract positive people and develop healthy relationships.

7. Buy that thing You’ve always Longed For:

We all have childhood fantasies. Don’t die with regrets of not acquiring things you’ve dreamt of. If you’ve ever wanted to buy that branded shoe,visit that exotic place,eat breakfast at that seven star hotel,this is the perfect time to do so. Don’t hesitate to spend the money since in future you might be burdened with too many responsibilities to ever buy those things.

8. Ask Questions:

Ask questions and clear your doubts. This is the best time to acquire as much knowledge as you can. So don’t be embarrassed to ask questions about things you don’t know. You might discover interesting topics and explanations that might help you somewhere in future. Question yourself about the piece you just read,the context of it,the thought of the author,so on and so forth. Only when you ask questions you broaden your opportunities.

9. Look After Yourself:

Take a look at your mental and physical health. Are you content with what you’ve been? If not,start exercising and follow a proper diet. Taking proper care of your health will not only help you to become fit,but help improving your work-life balance all-over. On the other hand, taking care of your mental health through meditation will help you get a better perspective of life and organise your life better.

10. Eat whatever you like:

Now this might seem to be contradicting the above mentioned point,but you can actually balance healthy diet while eating food you love. When we age we are to confront several health issues and thus we have to avoid a lot of food for the sake of staying healthy. So keep a cheat day on your diet chart to eat the delicious foods you’ve always craved for. Don’t miss out on various cuisines and try everything out while you’re still young.

11. Get Rid of Negative People:

If you want to find mental peace and concentrate on your goal,cut off people who weigh you down. Unburden yourself from people who demotivate you in any and every way possible. You deserve to surround yourself with people who will guide and support you and your dreams and stand by you. Be very choosy while selecting your acquaintances in your youth,since you will become the person you’ll surround yourself with.

12. Save Money:

You will be astonished by the amount of money you could acquired if only you’d have spent a little less when you were young. You might not realize that those money could be spent in necessary insurances or investments or you could even pay off your student loans gradually. Moreover,you’ll need more money as you age. You might need it for a new house or your child’s education and other daily necessities. So if you save a considerate amount of money in your 20s you might lead the rest of your life with more relaxation.

13. Don’t be afraid to change directions:

Never hesitate to change directions when you feel like it. Be it a job or the goal you had set,you might come up with considerable reasons to redefine your directions. In such situations don’t be afraid to walk the new path. You never know,you might confront a better life.

14. Forgive Yourself:

Accept your past mistakes and move on. You should stop being hard on yourself since all those negative thoughts will further disrupt you from reaching your goals. Whatever you’ve mistaken can be replaced by enthusiasm and consistency towards your goals. You can change your destiny when you realize and learn from your mistakes. You’ve already wasted time and now stop wasting more by unnecessary regrets.

15. Learn:

Be very hungry to learn new things. Attend seminars,read autobiographies of famous people, participate in different projects,learn new languages,musical instrument and almost everything that you can’t perform and which can take you closer to your goals.

16. Take Risks:

Don’t be afraid to take risks. This is the best time to do so since you will get time to survive a failure and start all over again. Mostly,you’ll get exposure to new lessons from those failures which will help you make sound decisions regarding work or relationships in future.

17. Learn to say ‘No’:

There will be times when you’ll be forced to do something or attend an event which you might not want to be a part of. Start saying a firm no where it’s necessary. You’ll save a lot of energy and time and be able to spend those where necessary. Try prioritising and chalking out which plans or events won’t work for you and stay true to your commitments.

18. Master the Art of Communication:

Here’s a step by step guidance to be an effective communicator

Communication skills are a must for anyone irrespective of his or her age. So,if you start working on it early on,you’ll reap the results faster. Try changing your body language,be precise when you want to express your thoughts. Through effective communication you can easily succeed in cracking that deal or earn respect.

19. Start your own Business:

Starting your business will help you become responsible. You’ll learn more things than ever in any job. You’ll be able to master communication skills,deal with different people,set goals, determine path to achieve them.. so on and so forth. Thus it’s always better to start a business at an early age since the risks are worth taking. You’ll get more time and opportunities to learn new things and apply them into business.

So,these are the tips that will definitely help you to get the most out of your 20s and prepare you for success.

How to Master Reading Comprehension With Ease

Reading Comprehension is the ability to read text,process it and understand its meaning. But this is the part which most people struggle with. Any reading comprehension is just a main idea surrounded with supporting details. We need to understand the passage,formulate answer and eliminate tricky answer choices.

Importance of Reading Comprehension:

  • To master complex scientific concepts,comprehend historical treaties or follow complex logic problems one needs analytical skills which is developed through reading comprehension.
  • To prepare students for college,courses and competitive examinations reading comprehension needs to be mastered.
  • Reading comprehension is time bound therefore it develops the ability to analyse a situation in no time and make important decisions at the time of crisis in real life.
  • It increases your focus since you need to understand the inner meaning or the message conveyed in the piece.
  • It increases your vocabulary or ability to understand the context even when encountered by alien words.

Types of Reading Comprehension Questions asked in Exams:

  1. Main theme (also mentioned as: primary purpose, gist, summary, author’s primary conclusion,which of the following statements will the author strongly support,key ideas,objective,central idea)
  2. Data based (factual questions,facts which are explicitly mentioned)
  3. Structure questions(what is the function of 2nd paragraph in the passage, the adjective x in line y is used to emphasize that..,the relationship between the 1st paragraph and the passage is best described as..,the author refers to x in the line y primarily to..,the word x most clearly corresponds to which of the following phrases)
  4. Tone questions(author’s sentiment or attitude: acerbic,harsh,severe,bitter,caustic, vitriolic,angry,indigent, apologetic,belligerent, bellicose, biased,commiserating, condescending, patronizing, contemptuous,derisive,cynical, dogmatic,ethical,euphemistic, grandiose, humanistic,humorous, introspective, incendiary, provocative, populist,romantic , sarcastic, satirical,ironical,taunting, speculative,technical..)
  5. Inference (implied idea, what does the author or passage imply, what does the author of passage suggest)
  6. Hypothetical or out of context or assumption and argument questions(how would the author most likely respond to the assertion that..,what does the author assume in support of his idea..)

Requirements for Practising Reading Comprehension:

A. Develop your vocabulary:

Here is the Ultimate Guide to Boost your Vocabulary

Focus on increasing your vocabulary to develop an understanding of the passage. Mark words that you don’t know and find out their meaning. Sometimes in reading comprehension you have to understand the contextual meaning. Context are the words that come immediately before and after a particular word or phrase that helps to explain its meaning or background environment, framework or situation surrounding an event or occurrance. Thus,a strong vocabulary is necessary. Sometimes the contextual meaning of the word may be different from this actual meaning and only the context can give you a clear idea. Thus knowing vocabulary is important to know the context as well.

B. Develop reading skills:

Check out here How to Develop a Reading Habit: 7 Tips for Beginners

If you can read a standard newspaper for a year,you can solve 50% of the passage without even reading it. Revaluate how you are currently reading. Notice when your attention,energy or comprehension of the material begins to drop. Increase your time of focus slowly. Start reading books at or below your level and then work your way up. You can use the Oxford Bookworms Test or the A2Z Home’s website to determine your reading level. Read books over and over again to gain fluency and exposure to various words and phrases.

C. Taking Notes as You Read:

You should take notes for deeper focus, involvement and understanding of the passage. Jot down what you understood about each paragraph. It should be proportionate enough to understand while not rewriting the whole paragraph. Note down odd details and anything that strikes you. Ask questions about the theme or the author’s intention. While practising this you can use two column method where all the material information like page number, quotation,character name and like will be in the left column and your comments will be in the right column.

D. Read with a Purpose:

Dedicate your time in both guided and relaxed reading practise for atleast 2 hours a week. Look at the important section first instead of reading a book. Look for the main idea and the read around that main idea. You should use the table of content section,heading and titles to determine where to read first. Set aside some time each day or week to read in a non stress environment without the pressure of a deadline. Stop reading when you get confused and try to summarize what you just read.

Process of Solving Reading Comprehension:

  1. Before reading the passage,skim the questions and memorize certain words and phrases. This will help you to identify the same when you’ll go through the passage and you’ll be able to answer them right away. You’ll also be able to answer questions related to vocabulary and save time.
  2. For the rest of the questions,categorise the question identifying the indicators or key words. Example, is the question asking for the main theme or asking to infer from the passage.
  3. Formulate the answer or working methodology (read each paragraph and rewrite or summarize what you understood in your own words,write down the key points and key words,shorten the technical terms and names,write down key sentence for each paragraph,evaluate the answer choices and select correct answer choices).
  4. Eliminate the traps or tricky or close answer choices(pre-think the answer,review answer choices thoroughly,don’t be in a hurry to mark the answer,review options which signals extreme positions in an issue: always,every,only,no,never,must,all,have to etc., don’t extend answers outside the premises of the provided information if it’s not a hypothetical question,differentiate between possibility i.e.: can/could and certainty i.e.: should/must).

Once you practise the above mentioned methods,it will be easier to understand any complex passage and answer the questions accurately. Continuous practice will help in precise and thorough understanding of the given passage which will help to better connect the ideas and evaluate the given information and reach to the actual conclusion.

Easiest ways to improve your General Knowledge

Be it competitive exams or communication purposes,the need to improve your general knowledge is inevitable in daily life. Without proper general knowledge about current affairs or static subjects,you won’t be able to feel confident enough to face a group of knowledgeable people. Your success will be limited. Also,there will be huge difference in merit and score in competitive examinations which require an essential test of your general knowledge. Therefore,it’s always better to put yourself in advantage of greater information. You can strategize the way you want to start off with developing your general knowledge.

In any examination or quiz competition or for personal development,you can categorize general knowledge in two parts: Current affairs and Static GK. Current affairs covers a vast topic ranging from international news, Government and politics, business and economics, technology etc. While static GK covers history, geography,general science,books and authors.

Preparation techniques for competitive exams:

Firstly you need to find your purpose of studying GK. If it’s for cracking entrance exams,you should consider going through past test papers. Check GK questions carefully and understand the pattern and marks allotted to each category of GK. In any exam GK covers subjects like Polity, Geography,History,Biology,Science,Economics and Current Affairs. I will suggest going through websites like ClearIAS.com, cleariasexam.com,mrunal.org,insightsonindia.com for deep insight and doubt clearing on each topic. You can study(for Indian exams) each topic in following manners.

  1. For Polity you can consult with the Arihant GK book by Manohar Panday or any ncert books for Indian exams and other books that are available in your country.
  2. For Geography ncert books of class 6,7 and 9 will be enough for detailed idea. Also you can consult Arihant books by Manohar Panday. Always keep an Oxford School Atlas for better retention of information.
  3. History requires a good background story for each event to be remembered properly. It is better not to start with ancient history. Rather start with modern history from war of independence or 1857 to 1947. After that come to medieval history and go through the names of rulers and detailed information only about famous Vijaynagar and Bahmani kingdom. You should create a timeline to remember the timings and chronology of each event. You can consult class 6,7,8 ncert books.
  4. Biology will be best understood if you consult animated videos to provide working of our organs and other information. Class 9 ncert books are best buys for this.
  5. It’s better not to invest much time in physics and chemistry if you don’t have a strong background in these. Read the class 10 ncert book for insight.
  6. Economics can also be avoided if you don’t have much time to prepare for the exam. You can only go through the names,functions and head quarters of world organizations and banks. You can study the policies of national or international banks.
  7. You don’t need to go through daily current affairs because there are a lot of redundant information in even highly informative newspapers. It can waste a lot of time if you don’t have filtering abilities. It’s always better to follow weekly or monthly news updates by free online study resources for precise information relevant to examinations.

General Knowledge for Self development:

1. Read Newspapers:

Categorise news in three parts: Interesting,Famous and Relevant. Start with relevant news and gradually move on to interesting and famous news. Identify the relative importance of broad topics and proportionate time in each topic.

2. Watch Television:

Watch TV series which are even obscure. Get used to different language, cultures. Watch informative channels like CNN,BBC and their news bulletins. You can also watch Discovery,National Geographic,History channels for genuine and in depth information on variety of topics.

3. Visit GK websites:

You can always get genuine and faithful information from Britannic, Encyclopedia,History(website by History channel). InstaNerd.Me offers short information about a particular topic and an option to get a deeper insight of the same topic if clicked a particular link. Wikipedia is also a trusted website regardless of the myth that it can be edited by anyone. ‘Academic Kids’ is a website for general knowledge for young child.

4. Watch YouTube:

You can always tune in to TED-Ed talks. They provide information on almost every topic in the world. The videos are made by a group of 15 professional educators who are proficient in general knowledge. You can also watch videos by vsource,crashcourse, oversimplified etc.,those who take complex information and simplify for understanding.

5. Install GK Apps:

For being updated with the latest info and easy access to those, you can always install some reliable mobile apps. Try apps like Encyclopedia by Farlex,General Knowledge – World GK, General knowledge (2020 or the current year), History channel documentaries (free and paid version) etc.

6. Read books:

Read text books,novels, non-fictions,covers of shampoo,advertisements and almost everything to expand your horizon. Apart from that since there’s a high chance of forgetting necessary information in the myriad information,reading books might seem a futile venture. Yet books can develop a sustainable knowledge with a greater perspective. Books like Manorama Year book,Mathrubhumi Year Book,Limca Book of Records, Encyclopedia Britannica (e-book available) can be of great help to develop an extensive knowledge on almost any topic. You can also listen to audiobooks on the go,if you’re not an avid reader.

Don’t like reading books? Here’s how you can easily develop a reading habit.

7. Participate in Quiz contests:

Try attending and participating in numerous quiz contests,puzzles,trivia etc. You can also participate in online quiz competitions and win cash prizes and certificate of participation.

8. Register for online courses:

If you think you lack the understanding of a particular subject,you can sign up for MOOCs or online courses. Online Courses provide understandable video courses which will surely clear your doubts on certain topics and develop a general understanding of the subject.

9. Play and Follow Games:

Follow sports and know the players more than they know themselves. Research about the game,it’s rules,famous moments,origin etc. It will be fruitful if you experience them by yourself from playing or watching from gallary.

10. Hang around smarter people:

You can come across various topics and opinions when you meet people who are knowledgeable. Communication is the best way to develop your general knowledge. Moreover to be accepted in a group you would want to know more to contribute more and earn reputation. This stimulates your yearning to know more.

11. Stay inquisitive:

To develop general knowledge you must have the thirst to know more. Search for quality analysis of a subject. Don’t be shy to ask questions. Hone your curiosity and don’t move on until your quest on a particular topic is fulfilled. Make all your other habits more education or learning focused.

To conclude,make developing general knowledge a lifestyle. Seek knowledge I everything you do. Go to exhibition,talk to people and learn about their journey and story,listen to podcasts,watch documentaries and anything and everything. Be passionate and don’t give up. This is not an overnight exercise;you need years of practice and effort to develop command over general knowledge.

How to Plan Your Year Ahead

Since,a new decade is about to start,it’s the best time to plan your year ahead. Planning your year is always a better way to achieve small goals all through the year which eventually adds up to a huge achievement at the end of the year. With the help of the plan you will be able to –

  • Take control of your life.
  • Get clear on your demand from life and specifically focus on that.
  • Keep track of your actions towards your goal.
  • Increase the chances of achieving goals,which would go unnoticed if were not documented.
  • Identify unique support systems to help you get through the hurdles and succeed.

So below are the ways you can come up with a plan that will help you stay integrated and guide you to utilise your maximum potential.

1. Do a Year-end Review:

Before you start to plan for a new year, you need to be at peace with your desires, experiences and achievements in the previous year. You need to let go of the old,capture your learnings and forgive your mistakes.

  • List your successes and achievements of the previous year. What are you proud of?
  • List down your learnings and how you can apply it in your life.
  • Identify who you need to forgive in previous year. Find out reasons for forgiving yourself as well. Stop beating yourself up for the misconducts and take responsible actions.
  • List down experiences and opportunities of previous year,which you’re grateful for.
  • Provide the vital clues and insights into what you need to focus on and can transform.
  • Make space for new dreams.

2. Brainstorm your goals for this year:

Which goals or habits should I add in my yearly journal?

Grab a journal and allow your mind to focus on things you’d want to achieve this year. Get in touch with your unique self. Realise your life needs a change. Ask yourself,who you are when nobody is looking. If you’re new in the self development journey and not sure which goals you should start with,you can try changing your daily habits.

3. Set your Goals for each aspect of your life:

Create goals in each category of your life. You can choose any or every from the list below.

  • Business
  • Money
  • Relationships
  • Personal Growth
  • Health
  • Entertainment

You don’t be numerous goals for each category. Yet you need well thought through goals after a careful analysis of the areas you lack focus the most. Brainstorm all these goals and then prioritize the goals to be achieved this year. Most people overestimate what can be achieved in a year and underestimate what can be achieved in 3 years. Have 3,5 and 10 year plans to pick goals to focus on this year.

Rate on a score of 1- 10 about your satisfaction with each aspect in life. The highest scorer can be left to be touched upon later. The lowest scores indicate the areas you need to be most attentive to. Irrespective of having goals in all categories,goals can be both high growth and low growth depending on a given year. Use your intuition and experience to set appropriate goals. It’s always better to know where you’re headed even if you’re not able to meet all your goals.

Along with this you can focus your year on a specific theme. You can pick 1-3 words that represent the key idea of your focus on this year. Example: Love, inspire etc. If you look at your goals and identify the fields that’s being stressed upon the most,it will be easier to label them with key words.

4. Write down your Goals:

Writing down your goals creates a false impression of already achieving your dreams. It emphasizes and speeds up the process of manifestation of your dreams. Write down your goals as if you’ve already achieved it. ” I am so excited to be admitted in my dream school. I am proud of myself and delighted to make my parents proud. I love celebrating this achievement with my parents and friends. I had an enthralling trip to Europe on the occasion of this achievement. I have also established a successful business and get amazing feedback from the customers.”

Decide where you’re going to put down your goals. You can put it in your journal. You can also use spreadsheet for tracking your finances. I will also suggest creating virtual or real vision board where you’ll see motivating images of what it looks like and feels like to have accomplished your goals. You can create real vision board using paper cuttings, photographs, quotes from magazines. Or you can create virtual vision board on Pinterest.

5. Create a Financial Plan:

Create a personal financial spreadsheet to track your personal outgoings and expenses. This will give you an idea of controlling your finances and save more. You will become much more financially independent. You can use a business calculator with projection for sales and revenue for the year.

  • Get a clarity about overall income goal for the year and play around with ideas for reaching that financial goal.
  • Track all your accounts each week and enter the balances into a spreadsheet.
  • Don’t be overwhelmed and find professional support in managing your finances.

6. Review your Support System:

When you meet the right coach,(s)he can help you accelerate results. You will achieve goals sooner and with ease. Invest in your success to level up the support in your life. Make a list of expertise you need to reach your goals. Ask yourself what extra support you’ll need to guarantee your success. Analyse if you need mental help to get over your fear if failing and limiting beliefs.

  • You can seek domestic help to unburden yourself from unnecessary tasks that don’t add up to your self development.
  • You can also delegate tasks as much as possible.
  • You can also take help from an electric system for storing and tracking your expenses and hire a book keeper to do your accounts.

7. Create a new daily routine:

Review your daily routine and identify things you aim to do consistently everyday. Pick one small task to conduct daily for a month and then another task in second month. Eventually within a year you’ll be able to follow a consistent routine.

Here’s how you can stick to your new daily routine.

8. Take action:

Once you have the clarity and vision about your goals,you should start manifesting. Clear the blocks and fears that don’t let you manifest your goals successfully. You will feel more energetic towards reaching out for maximum achievement.

Lastly,try to be present in each moment. No matter how small the goal is,giving your full attention can turn over the results. You need to be mindful to achieve any goal or atleast to walk in the pathway of achieving them. So all of these tips can help you plan this new year. But to achieve yearly goals,it’s always better to start off with daily, weekly or monthly plans. Hopefully you’ll have a great year ahead and reach all your goals at the very end of this year.


How to stick to your New Year Resolution:

You don’t rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems

– James Clear

So again another year is coming to an end signifying start of a new year or to be precise,a decade. New year,new you,right? Well,not exactly so. Only 9.2 % of people ever achieve their new year resolution. New year can’t magically improve your life since you can’t run away from who you are or have been all year long. You will have to face your own short coming and bad habits. Timing for your change is arbitrary. It doesn’t depend on the new year. It may be due to your hopelessness over the direction your life is heading towards. Unless you want to confront or change them they will stick to you. You won’t really have a sudden limitless discipline or stress free schedule.

Unlike a new day,new year holds certain psychological significance. Although we are aware of the fact that dates are just arbitrary markers,we still feel 1st January is special. It symbolises new beginning. This stimulates our motivation temporarily. You can utilise this inspiration as a temporary boost that you won’t stick to or as a tool to start building long term habits. Take the initial inspiration to get started. Don’t depend on the motivation to help you get through the process.

We need to have grit – the passion and perseverance for very long term goals. We need the stamina to stick with future day-in and day-out and not just a single day or week. We have to work diligently towards our desired future self considering the journey to be a marathon and not a sprint. Following are the ways you can try sticking to your New year’s resolutions this year.

1. Create proper Goals:

Most of us are terrible at creating goals. We come up with goals which are unsustainable,unrealistic and doomed to fail. We need to follow a SMART(Specific,Measurable, Achievable, Result oriented,Time bound) rule for creating our goal.

  • Specific: Rather than “read more books”, try “read 21 pages of a nonfiction book at noon”.
  • Measurable: Rather than “lose weight”,try ” lose 1 pound in 5 days by eating low calorie food and green veggies.
  • Achievable: Rather than ” 50 pushups everyday”,try ” 5 pushups for a week and eventually increasing the number of pushups by 5 each week.
  • Result oriented: Rather than “avoid social media”,go for ” track my usage or time invested in social and restrict it for half an hour per day.”
  • Time bound: Rather than “Learn to play a brain game”,go for “Learn to play chess within a month”.

2. Get started now:

Not sure which habits to start off with? Here are the 20 habits for lifetime.

Even if January 1st hasn’t come around,the anticipation of new year itself is powerful. You don’t necessarily need to wait till the date arrives. Give this a thought – if you don’t have time to exercise for 30 minutes now,how will you have the same on January 1st? You’ll confront same limitations if you don’t take drastic actions against them. Use the time and resources you have right now and follow up with the pattern.

3. Start small with a Keystone Habit:

Setting small attainable goals throughout the year ,instead of a singular overwhelming goal on Jan 1 can help you reach whatever it is you strive for.

Psychologist Lynn Bufka,PhD

As explained by Charles Duhigg in his book ‘Power of Habit’,focus on a Keystone habit that results in a domino effect aligning multiple other areas in your life. Small incremental improvements are more likely than dramatic shifts to result in the desired outcome. Figure out what your own keystone habit is and drive your concentration and energy there. If you’re not into work out right now, schedule to exercise for 1 day every week. Starting with a week based of small scale resolution is a chance to prove to yourself that you can stick to it. This makes the process real,thus it’s not possible to turn around. Too many goals and too few systems in place causes trouble to implement and sustain a habit.

4. Self compassion:

You need to accept that you’re gonna slip up or miss a day in conducting the habit. The important part is what you do about it. Instead of beating yourself up,make sure that you’re not skipping a habit in a 2 days row. Because that’s when you start procrastinating and find it difficult to restart. If you get discouraged, give up,revert to your old days,then you failed. But if you know that bumps are inevitable in the way and get back up and reevaluate your system and strengthen it,it will be easier for you to stick to the habit. Don’t feel pressured to implement systems only in the starting of the year. You can start at any time of the year.

5. Track Your Progress:

Researches show,keeping a food diary doubles the chances of weight loss. Therefore,while keeping track,when you don’t have ability to follow a particular topic,you’ll feel you rely on the feeling of accomplishment of the habit. So it’s likely that you won’t skip the habit.

6. Seek support:

Fill your social media feeds with people who have already achieved what you’re up to. Talk about your perception of changing habits. Consider joining a support group to reach your goals such as a workout class at your gym or a group of co-workers quitting smoking. This process of habit building is easier and less intimidating.

7. Reward yourself:

Rewarding yourself for small achievements will help you to stick to and master the habits enthusiastically. Don’t be harsh on yourself and be your own cheerleader.

Lastly,”it’s not the extent if the change that matters,but rather the act of recognising that lifestyle change is important and working towards it,one step at a time.” Don’t get carried away in the self congratulatory behavior of setting resolutions and instead focus on implementing the processes that will in long term help you reap the results that you seek.


The Ultimate Bucket List : 85 Experiences You Must Have Before You Die

I am not afraid of dying,I am afraid I haven’t been alive enough.

Mr. Nobody(Movie)

Most of us lead a boring life even without knowing certain excitements and fulfillments that life can offer. Not everyone is a billionaire who can afford visiting exotic places,therefore I’m not going to lay down a travel plan rather I’m gonna put up a list of experiences you must have before you die. Since,new year is near,list down the experiences you want to have this year or tick off the ones you’ve already had. Life moves pretty fast and if you don’t stop to look around once in a while,you can miss it.

1. Go on a road trip(preferably in Ladakh) with like-minded people.

2. Visit all seven continents.

3. Sleep under the stars.

4. Watch all movies from IMDB’s Top 100 Films list.

5. Read all books recommended by BBC’s Top 100 books list.

6. Live in a different country. This experience differs immensely from that of travelling. You’ll have to cope up with the new culture and make a living out of it.

7. Make something from scratch. This can be your own business or even a robot inspired from the book you have recently read! You never know your capacity until you try something new.

8. Conquer a fear. Try once to feel liberated.

9. Learn a foreign language. This not only works on strengthening your memory but also builds confidence and keeps you at advantage while visiting foreign country.

10. Donate your hair for cancer. Destroy the traditional conventions of beauty especially if you’re a woman.

11. Disconnect for a week from internet,phone,TV and all the burden of modern technology. Avoid the temptation and set free from mental clutter.

12. Take part in marathon or half marathon. The energy and experience will be unmatched.

13. Go to a major sports event. Be it Olympic,World Cup or Wimbledon matches,the cheer from the gallery and overwhelming crowd will definitely leave you speechless.

14. Eat something you wouldn’t usually- ranging from vegetables to insects and every other food you consider gross. It will be fun.

15. Attend a music concert.

16. Volunteer for a social cause or help people in dire need.

17. If possible take responsibilities of someone’s education.

18. Learn a new skill especially something that you think you’re terrible at.

19. Adopt a rescue pet rather than buying an expensive one.

20. Host a party and take responsibilities of everything from food to music,ambience etc. You’ll be overwhelmed by your ability of event management.

21. Stay awake for 24 hours and observe your physical and emotional response to it.

22. Sleepover somewhere haunted or go for a ghost walk.

23. Climb a mountain,no matter how small it is.

24. Sleep on the beach. Camping by the sea and watching the sunrise over it is an out-of-the-world feeling.

25. Pilot an aircraft. You can find coupons online to achieve these through a single flying lesson.

26. Swim in the ocean.(I’m already getting goosebumps!)

27. Donate blood.

28. Protest something. Fighting for something you truly care about is an amazing feeling.

29. Jump off a cliff.

30. Ride a horse.

31. Swim under a waterfall.

32. Go camping (my favourite).

33. Write a book.

34. Learn to skateboard.

35. See the northern lights in person (save money if you need to).

36. Go for paragliding.

37. Participate in snowboarding in the mountains.

38. Join a NGO and offer skills for the good of the distraught.

39. Participate in Karaoke.

40. Leave a note for a stranger. The note should be nice and uplifting to brighten one’s day.

41. Watch a meteor shower.

42. Spend a night in a tree house.

43. Dance in the rain.

44. Experience zero gravity.

45. Eat in an underwater restaurant.

46. Make a snow angel.

47. Let go of a floating lantern.

48. Feel great in a swimsuit.

49. Ride an elephant.

50. Stand under the Hollywood sign.

51. Go on a hot air balloon ride.

52. Take a photo everyday for a year.

53. Break a Guinness world record.

54. Helicopter ride over a volcano.

55. Send a message in a bottle.

56. Bury a time capsule and open it. It’s a fantastic opportunity to reflect and see how much your life has positively changed since you buried it. Also leave time capsules for other people as well.

57. Research your family tree to be overwhelmed by unconventional information.

58. Cage dive with great white sharks.

59. Finish a book in one sitting.

60. Decide if God exists or not,for once and for all.

61. Dramatically change something about your appearance (hairstyle, clothing choices,etc.).

62. Say ‘Yes’ to everything for 24 hours.

63. Dance in your or other’s wedding.

64. Take any random bus/train and follow the route.

65. Name a star.

66. Swim with and kiss a dolphin.

67. Fly in a private jet.

68. Meet the person you admire the most(idol).

69. Do something awkward and fun in public.

70. Sing your favourite song at the top of your lunges (even if you’re terrible at singing).

71. Swing on the edge of the world in Ecuador.

72. Add a lock to the Pont Des Arts Bridge in Paris.

73. Ride a gondola.

74. Go on a wild safari.

75. Experience a terrifying ride in an amusement park.

76. Swim with the coral reefs.

77. Learn the sign language of the deaf and Braille system of the blind.

78. Learn to play any musical instrument.

79. Learn to play any outdoor and indoor sports.

80. Spend time with yourself to know yourself better and gain confidence.

81. Spend time with your family to learn cooperation and be sympathetic and care for others.

82. Grow your own vegetables,fruits and flower.

83. Learn how to cook your own signature dish that will leave your friends and family impressed.

84. Try bungee jumping or parachuting.

85. Gift your family with your money.

So those were the experiences that I will definitely want to go through. Don’t die before you actually die. Go through new experiences and outgrow your current self. So,which one of the list did you find exciting? Have you already planned which of these you’re gonna experience in new year? Do let me know. Also suggest if there is something more exciting that can be added to this list.

20 Habits for Lifetime

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence,then,is not an act,but a habit.

Aristotle

Success doesn’t happen in an instance. It happens through the progression of numerous little successes, strengthened together over time. If you have dreams,vision and a clearly defined end goal,you need to implement certain habits that will allow the end goal to manifest itself.

Even though there are many ways to implement habits,I found following mini habit the easiest way to incorporate any habit. In most of the cases we don’t get anything done because we expect too much of ourselves. Let’s understand this. Suppose you want to implement a reading habit and you decide to read for 1 hour everyday. Now,in your busy days,you might find it difficult to manage an hour and decide to skip reading that day. The other day you somehow manage to read for an hour. This creates a mental satisfaction and then again another day you just skip reading since you know you’ll manage it another day. Therefore there is lack of productivity and also it becomes impossible to make book reading a habit. You need to maintain regularity to build up any habit.

Therefore to make any habit a part of your daily life,have low expectations from yourself and set small goals. This will help you to get out of your mental rut and commit to do the work every single day without failing. You’ll be able to do everything over a longer period of time and you can choose to spend some more time into it if you want to. So if you are currently procrastinating on studying,it’s not possible for you to study for 1 hour. Start with convincing yourself to sit for 5 minutes only and the chances are you’ll study more than 5 minutes and that’s better than studying nothing. Too much commitment can demotivate procrastinators.

At the same time,keep in mind that it’s better to implement one habit at a time. It’s helpful to set little manageable goals at a time. Committing to changing our behavior on a daily basis can be stressful but setting mini goals and targeting one goal at a time can help you implement the habit faster.

1. Set Goals & Track them:

You need to find what you really want from your life. It’s not possible to move forward without a clear target. If you don’t know where you’re going,you’ll end up at some place you didn’t want to be. Setting goals is directly proportional to seeking success. When you know your ‘Why’ and the end goal,it becomes easier to break down exactly what is required to get there. Your reason for doing what you must do need to be strong enough to keep you going when you hit the roadblocks. Also start tracking your achievement of goals. You’ll see how much you over-promise and under-deliver and find out what’s need to be done to fix them. This should be your priority if you intend to change the track of your life.

2. Follow Your Passion:

Following your passion sounds easy,yet you might still not be convinced enough to choose passion over financial freedom. You might not want to start your career all over again. But following the rat race and doing things that you hate just for money I torture. Even if you need to suffer doing something you don’t like to get a life you love,do that while not losing sight of your ultimate purpose. You can always turn your passion into profession. Even if you’re taking a pay cut,it’ll be worth it. Doing what you love everyday can give you the success that you could’ve never achieved otherwise.

Find your true passion and achieve maximum success in life.

3. Read a lot:

Now this might sound cliche but I can never stress enough how helpful reading books can be. Almost 80% of billionaires are avid readers. They spend most of their time reading so that they can accumulate knowledge for betterment of themselves. Reading books can help you become calm,confident, knowledgeable and even an orator. The more you learn,the more you earn both financially and spiritually.

Not an avid reader?Here’s how you can develop a reading habit.

4. Work Harder and Longer:

No matter how much they tell you to work smarter,nothing can beat the effect of working smarter for long hours. If you work for 40 hours/week like all other average people,you might be able to earn money but that won’t help you achieve massive success. The hours spent beyond 40 hours will decide how successful you’ll become. The billionaires work for atleast 59 hours/week. This can even extend to 70-80 hours/week. Billionaire Elon Musk believes if he can double his effort or working hours,he can achieve anything 2x faster than anyone else. He invests an astonishing 80-120 hours per week in his work. Therefore when these people want to take a month’s vacation,it doesn’t affect their work.

5. Manage your time well:

Billionaires and all successful people are extremely cautious of spending their time effectively. They know how much value each second can add to their life. In this era of technology,time is the currency. You must know how to manage your time well by prioritizing the big payoffs and most rewarding tasks first. Leave the insignificant ones to conduct later. This will help you find time for yourself and yiur relationships while achieving your work goals.

Struggling with managing your time? Here are some practical tips for recovering work-life balance.

6. Dream Big:

Dreaming big motivates you to work harder. Atleast 60% people don’t even dare to dream about achieving something great. That’s their primary failure. This restricts your vision to hit the top. To do away with limitations in your dream,imagine your futureself 5 years from now. Imagine how perfect it will be in all aspect. The ideal job,the money you’ll want to have, lifestyle,partner etc. everything should be vivifly imagined. The clear the imagination,the faster the chances of achieving the dream.

7. Get around Right People & nurture relationships :

Surround yourself with people who represent what you ultimately want to become. Take a look at the people around you. Avoid anyone who doesn’t add value and positivity to your life. Check in with people of different ages. 85% of life’s happiness depends on the quality of relationship you share with the people around you. The better the relationship,higher the chances of success. Although success is possible even without having many relationships,knowing people is always advantageous to reach goals faster. Some people can be very helpful and inspiring to proceed in life. Make time for your close friends. You could have all the money in the world,but if you traded your friends to get there,you won’t be happy. Have a ‘Go giver’ approach rather than a ‘Go getter’ one. Be a good listener and be compassionate. Don’t monopolize conversation or fake fake attention. When you’re ready to give people and add value to their lives without expecting anything in return,you become acceptable to people.

Not sure how to approach and talk to people? Here’s a detailed guideline to improve your communication skills.

8. Practice Honesty:

Your success in life depends upon the number of people who trust or have faith in you. To achieve trust tell the truth and always maintain integrity. Imagine how you’d act if you know everyone is watching your activities and are implementing them in their lives. You’d want yourself to be projected as an honest person. Therefore try to practice honesty in your life.

9. Self-discipline & Self-development:

Choose what you’d want to do when you’re alone at home – choose entertainment or choose to sharpen your skills? Your answer will determine your future. The more you invest in yourself and develop self discipline,the higher the chances of you to be successful. Self discipline requires staying true to the promises you’ve made to yourself. This can range from healthy eating habits,meditation to exercises and like. It becomes easier to follow a disciplined life when you have a clear end goal and meaningful purpose,which is much more important than meaningless distractions. And when you practise self discipline you start finding new ways to invest in self development. Consider that there is always some space for you to grow and expand your vision. Be open to learning through mentors,audiobooks,seminars, communication and like.

10. Manage Finances:

Focus on saving atleast 30% of your money. If it’s too hard,save some amount of money from your daily expenses. For example,if you are left with $12 after spending,save $2 for that day and make your expenditure in a round figure(i.e.: $10,$20,$50…). Don’t spend on unnecessary things and clothes. Clothes come up with too many choices to make a decision. Try eliminating such anxiety and save money. You should also track where you’re spending most of your money in.

11. Wake up early:

Most of the successful people wake up before 6 AM. In between 4-6 AM your brain works most efficiently,so if you want to achieve most in less time,feel energetic,be productive,find time for yourself and have a competitive edge over others,you should better wake up as early as possible. To wake up early without any alarm clock,you must have a goal of a passion to motivate you. Creating a strong morning routine and a complementary evening routine nourishes your brain and makes you active and ambitious.

Can’t wake up early even if you want to?These 6 tips will make you wake up at 4 AM everyday

12. Take Risks:

If you don’t buy a ticket,you can’t win the raffle. You can’t achieve big rewards without taking any risks. Some people won’t ever take any risks for the fear of failure. However,the greater the failure,more the chances to learn. Successful people prefer failing to regretting for never taking a chance. Risk for going for the life you want or guarantee living in one you don’t want.

13. Possess a winning mentality:

Everyone who wants to live the dream life,will suffer through failure. Many might lose everything. Most people quit. The greatest character is formed in adversity. Deal with whatever life throws at you,dodge it, smash through it. Winners do whatever is required to find a way to win or reach goals. As Jim Rohn rightly said,” Successful people do what unsuccessful people are not willing to do. Don’t wish it were easier,wish you were better.”

14. Take Responsibility:

Take responsibility for your condition and actions,your success and failures. Don’t blame your time, situation, economic condition or other people for the misery you go through. Don’t play a victim role. Learn and move on. Because when you take responsibilities,you get a chance to identify your mistakes and thus rectify it. This is the pathway to your growth in future.

15. Keep a Gratitude Journal:

Journal everyday about things that made you happy that day. Look at your life and find things,people and events to be grateful for. Write atleast a sentence. This will help you being sane and staying grounded. Without a positive attitude in life,you can hardly achieve what you desire.

16. The 80/20 Principle:

In other name,the Pareto Principle,suggests 80% of your success comes from 20% tasks or efforts. According to a Harvard Business Review almost everything we do is unimportant. We are mostly distracted and inattentive. Therefore identify the important 20% that gives you multitude of success. This 29% is often referred to as the law of vital few. Avoid the last 80% that don’t add any value in your life.

17. Go for a Social Media Detox:

Avoid social media or deactivate all of your social media accounts for few days. Notice how you feel. Chances are your mind will declutter,you will be able to focus on your life and self development,find more time for your passion and relaxation,will be less anxious….so on and so forth. And once you quit social media,it’ll be hard for you to choose your inner calmness to be distracted by unimportant and filthy news in social media.

Here’s why you won’t miss out on anything even if you’re not on Social Media.

18. Learn to Single task:

Only 2% people in the world can multitask successfully. Constant juggling limits focus and contributes to mental clutter. Multitasking makes it difficult for your brain to filter out irrelevant information. According to a Stanford research, multitasking lowers efficiency and impairs your cognitive control. Therefore learn to finish one task at a time.

19. Teach:

Pass on the knowledge you have already gained. This will not only strengthen your memory related to the knowledge but also will contribute to the poor children who can’t afford to pay for gaining such knowledge. There is no better way to give back to the society.

20. Travel often:

Travelling may seem to be mere expense,yet it’s worth spending the money. The knowledge and experiences you gain from travelling in unknown places can help you become way more confident. You learn from different people and apply those to uplift your life. Start travelling now if you want to know yourself better.

So,these are the top 20 habits,that can help you climb the success ladder and enlist you in the rare 2% successful people. Stick to these habits for long term results and to observe change in your life pattern. Design your environment. Always remember that “You can’t climb the ladder of success with your hands in your pockets.”


Online Courses and Certificates : Are they worth spending time and money?

Now a days,we have access to almost any information at any place and due to the overflowing access to almost all of these,we take these for granted. Just take a moment and acknowledge how lucky we are to be the generation to get this opportunity which our forefathers had never got access to. In any case investing in yourself to learn useful skills and shaping your future should always be the priority.

For over a century,the traditional university driven education system and studying in brick and mortar has reigned over the concept of regulated and credentialed education. Yet online education or Massive Online Open Courses(MOOC) has taken over the world by storm in the form of a disruptive innovation in the traditional education system. Although the idea emerged around the year 2006,it was only 2012 when it became a worldwide phenomenon. Platforms like Coursera and Udacity,led by Stanford Professors and edX pioneered by MIT and Harvard opened the access to genuine courses created by masters in respective fields.

There are a number of open course platform which are for-profit and some even grant huge discounts on providing valid reason for application of consideration. Few are free or are whole or in an audit format. Platforms like edX provide 2000 courses and have 14 million users. Coursera has 2000 courses and 180 specializations and even Masters Degrees. It has over 25 million users. They have become independent resources of knowledge for many.

Challenges faced by online courses:

There have been a lot of research over this topic, irrespective of its availability and monetary relaxation,learning online has a lot of challenges.

  1. There is a huge pool of courses and tutorials available online. Therefore it is really challenging for the students to investigate genuineness and accreditation of courses. There are numerous fake courses which illicit money without providing proper guidance.
  2. The dropout rate from these courses are concerning. Among thousands of enrollments,completion rate is only 10%. Most of the candidates get lost in the sea of information and hover over different courses not completing any.
  3. Due to the massiveness of the courses,there is low involvement thus a communication gap between the teachers and students. Therefore it lacks the environment and facilities of face to face classes.
  4. The assessments can easily be automated. There is hardly any tool to detect and obstruct such activity.
  5. Students also open multiple accounts to obtain right responses for assessments. Therefore when they apply for a job based on what they’ve learnt online,there is a huge gap between the knowledge and the skill acquired.

Perception of Recruiters:

In this era of budding online learning platforms, student’s concern about the legitimacy of the online certificates to the recruiters is a valid anxiety. The acceptance of the certificates differ from one recruiter to another.

According to researches,some hiring managers prefer candidates to hold traditional degrees to measure their level of higher education and success in career. While MOOC certificates don’t give a clear insight to the person’s skills,degrees tend to provide a clear metric. They believe MOOC provides important skills that might be developed after recruitment and therefore is not necessary to be shown in CV. It is believed that someone with high qualifications from traditional schools has already proved himself/herself in the rigorous university credential system.

The decisions are also highly dependent on the industry which is hiring the candidate. Technology sectors stress more on skills irrespective of the degree. They prefer productivity and practical knowledge while liberal arts or Science research or medical research oriented industry will prefer credentials from reputed institutions.

Some recruiters believe students learn to adjust in work environments only when they go to traditional schools and interact with peers. Since there is little interactions between peers in online courses,recruiters might consider candidates less compatible for their organization.

It’s most likely that the recruiters who might have had MOOC experience,will be more open to accept candidates with those certificates. Although such recruiters are still low in percentage.

On the other hand,since the students preferring to get their online degrees has increased, employers perception is changing. Graduates with online degrees feel that recruiters care more for the reputation of their school,their major and their GPA than whether they have earned their degrees online or from traditional universities. Job seekers with such degrees are preferred for job positions. Since online students also possess a strong desire and commitment to improving their knowledge and skills while working 24×7 and balancing work and family responsibilities, recruiters believe they can have a higher achievement level. However some recruiters believe that the earning of degree matters only for the candidates who have graduated or earned degree recently. Recruiters are now more open to the employability of online learners.

Although sometimes some information are available in YouTube and blogs also. In such cases,too,all that matters is the skill of the students and proving those practically.

There is also another aspect where recruiters’ preference differ from student to student. That is MOOC from renowed university especially those who have physical as well as online presence get preferability and credibility. Online courses in India require the approval of University Grants Commission’s (UGC’s) Distance Education Bureau. UGC doesn’t recognize courses that are online and don’t have any physical presence. US Department of Education looks after accrediting valid courses. Therefore students should focus on getting degrees from a Government accredited online learning platform.

Online Degree Holders CV :

Online degree holders must come up with a valid reason of choosing distance learning when confronted in interviews. When asked about your lack of public communication skills in the online course,you should be able to prove through your presence of mind that it didn’t matter since you’re still a good communicator. A great CV and interview and good communication can change anyone’s mind regardless of where you possessed the degree from.

Benefits of Online Courses:

  • The obvious benefit is accessibility of various courses by elite university and their faculty members from any part of the world.
  • Opportunity to sharpen skills for uplifting career graph.
  • The classes are self paced and facilitates you to schedule your classes accordingly.
  • The course fees are very less in comparison to the traditional schools.
  • A lot of MOOC provides university credits and even Masters degree towards your degree in school.

How to learn via online effectively?

There are different stages through which you can get the most out of your online course,be it in learning platforms or YouTube. These stages closely follow the Hierarchy of Competence pyramid of Psychology,where the four stages are: 1. Unconscious incompetence. 2. Conscious incompetence. 3. Conscious competence. 4. Unconscious competence. When you start something new you don’t know what you don’t know,this stage is called unconscious incompetence and the other three stages follow over time. While you’re in the fourth stage you find a new skill to acquire and again the process starts all over again.

Image Source: Creative Commons

Stage I :

In this stage,discover every possible source where you can be helped. Understand which suits you,go through the overview of curriculum. So amongst multiple interests choose one and then find the best source to learn about that particular interest.

Stage II :

Find out the experts in your field and become a disciple. Commit time to find genuine people who are suitable for you. There are a lot of popular creators yet they might become a very good mentor to you. They are not necessarily good at what they’re doing but have good marketing skills. Mostly the people who advertise a lot are not suitable for mentorship. In cases of online courses find the best course through rating and preview videos.

Stage III :

While absorbing information apply that as much as possible to make it a part of long term memory. Engage in creative projects,have a goal to work towards. This will also help in building portfolio. In this way you’ll gradually identify what’s useful for you and what’s not.

So, ultimately all that matters how much self-driven you are and how committed you are in achieving your goals. Education, irrespective of its source,is always a doorway to new opportunities and self discovery.


Guaranteed Way to Boost Vocabulary

Do you often run out of words while expressing yourself? This happens especially when you’re having a conversation in a foreign language. Be it in your mother tongue or a foreign language,having an extensive vocabulary can give you an edge over others.

Benefits of Powerful Vocabulary:

Words are currency of communication. Vocabulary can improve all areas of communication such as listening,speaking, reading and writing.

  • Powerful vocabulary drives away the fear of speaking. You can communicate with anyone without the concerns of being judged. You won’t have any more inferiority complex and won’t be intimidated by a person who has attended an elite school.
  • You can be confident enough in exams where ability of reading comprehension,sentence correction,finding missing words,one word substitution etc are tested. You can encounter any difficult words in reading comprehension in no time.
  • You can develop great writing skills and use it for blog writing or writing books. You may find a passion and earning through it.
  • You can express yourself better and thus can be involved in engaging conversations.
  • Vocabulary will definitely give you professional success.
  • Building vocabulary can help you become eloquent,therefore you can easily persuade people. Thus you can build up your leadership skills and maybe become an orator.
  • You can understand movies and read a variety of books quite easily. You can also understand the context of songs and appreciate good ones.
  • Vocabulary expands your mind and thoughts.

How to Improve Your Vocabulary?

To improve your stock of words you have to follow the 4 step method which is 1. Read and listen, 2.Record,3. Review and 4. Grouping.

1. Read and listen:

You have to read extensively to come across as many words as possible.You can Choose to read any topic that interests you the most. Now, newspapers are not the best way to learn new words. Choose magazines,novels,short stories, biographies and read about your favourite topic. Wikipedia is also a good source of reading about any topic.

When you read,you don’t have to look up every difficult word in a dictionary because this distract and bore you. You can rather focus on guessing the meaning by judging the idea in the given context. If you still can’t guess,mark the words or write them down to review letter.

You should also listen to orators who have clear and precise pronunciation,listen to songs,watch movies to identify new words. You can also listen to TED talks regularly to come across new words regularly. This will help you recognize known words which you don’t use often and tend to forget. In either case note down foreign words. Even if you don’t know the spelling,write it phonetically (the way it sounds). You can also check video transcripts if available.

You can also discover words to find meaning of in the examination sites like TOEFL site or SET site.

2. Record:

Now,go back to the text and find words to learn. There are mainly two types of words: Unknown words or the words you don’t know and Inactive words or the words you’ve seen before but don’t know the exact meaning.

Aim to collect atleast 5 words everyday for a year. You can note them down in a notebook or on your computer as a Word or Excel document. You can also save it on your phone using any app.

Now,pick up the word and look it up in a dictionary(not an electronic dictionary). You can use preferably these websites:

You should try to involve your maximum senses to remember the particular word. Let’s take the word ‘active’.

  1. Write down the word and the meaning explaining in a sentence. Example: “Although he was old,he was still robust and active”. Write sentences you can relate to.
  2. Write down the form of the word and write down its other forms as well. Example: Active is an adjective. Noun: Active,Activity, Adverb: Actively etc. In this way you learn more words at the same time and associate them with others.
  3. Write down its pronunciation /àktIV/ and practice pronouncing until you get comfortable.
  4. Now write down the references or where you have found this word. Write the name of the book and page number. If it’s a website write down the web address. If it was in a speech then refer to the speech and timing of the word. This will help you reviewing the word and recalling the utilisation of it easily.
  5. Now write down the synonyms (words of same meaning) and antonyms (words of opposite meaning).
  6. You can also draw or stick a picture that gives the idea closest to the meaning.
  7. After you gather the words in this way use flashcards. Write down the word and the meaning of it in the alternative sides of a card. Separate them in different sections : words you know,words you’re almost sure about and the words you don’t know about. Now,learn the words you almost know and shift them to the section of known words. Then learn the words you don’t know,after practising those will be shifted to the almost known words. And this process will continue.

3. Grouping:

You can group words based on their specialities to recall them better.

  1. Same roots: You can group words based on their roots,suffixes or prefixes. Therefore knowing only the meaning of the root will be enough to get an idea of the meaning. Example: You can group all words with suffixes ‘ject’ (meaning ‘throw’) i.e. subject,reject,object,deject.
  2. Similar meaning: You can group the synonyms all together and try remembering all together when you recall only one word of the group. Example: Extend,expand, reinforce all are synonyms.
  3. Theme based: You can also collect words and phrases based on a particular theme such as technology,nature, relationship etc. so that whenever a particular topic arises,you can directly relate it to all the words that describe this topic. Example: For technology you can write down the meaning of Obsolete, Update,Downgrade, Cutting edge etc.

4. Review:

To bring new words in your active vocabulary, reviewing is necessary. Reviewing is the process of regularly revising the newly learnt words. Pick one day of the week as your review day. Then move onto older vocabulary.

The best way of reviewing is using the flashcards. Check the side of the card where the word is written and see if you can remember them. The best way is to start with reviewing the almost known words and also check the older words often.

You can also use flashcards apps if you want to but written ones are more effective.

After a firm grasp on the meaning and use of the words,you can start applying those in your everyday sentences. Try to engage with the words actively in your own speech as well as writing.

So,these are the methods that will definitely help you in developing a wide range of vocabulary. All you need is practise.


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