What Do I Do When I Get Stuck?

< Talking IT : News & Articles About IT Study & Learning >

What Do I Do When I Get Stuck In My Studies?

Starting a new interactive training course is an exciting time. With lots of new, interesting subjects to get our teeth into, it's tempting to become a complete social outcast and immerse ourselves in our studies at every available opportunity. But apart from that being slightly weird, it's also not the best way to learn and retain information.

The first thing we need to establish is a sustainable study habit. This is a number of hours each week that we can commit to and stick to, and doesn't exclude every other area of our lives! It's better not to run before we can walk, and much easier to take in information in bite-sized pieces. Consistently learning a smaller amount well is more useful and maintainable than learning a larger amount not so well. But however savvy we are with our learning diary, there are inevitably going to be times when the brain just glazes over, and nothing will go in.

When this happens, it's important not to get demoralised. There can be all sorts of reasons why we've had a mental block, and there are lots of ways to overcome the stalemate. Taking a break, going outside into the garden and breathing deeply can all help. It's amazing how a nice cup of tea and a piece of cake can fire up the reserves again.

It's not unusual to grapple with understanding the first time we look at something - anything new tests our mental agility, and sometimes we just have to accept that this is part of learning - it happens from time to time and it's uncomfortable, but with application we can push through until we get to the 'eureka' moment! Anything worth accomplishing takes a few failed attempts along the way - remember that awkward feeling when first behind the wheel of a car?

It often helps to leave something over-night and come back the next day with a fresh pair of eyes. Our sub-conscious mind has a habit of solving problems when we're not consciously aware it was working on them - and suddenly the answer pops into our head when we're least expecting it. Covering a section again, and then having a go at explaining it to someone else helps to clarify the point. Writing it down helps to organise thoughts - if we state our assumptions and the evidence for them, we can usually analyse out the problem areas.

Researching on Google or technical forums for other explanations and descriptions can sometimes hit the spot - with so many different medias out there we can frequently stumble upon something that puts it all in context.

FREE : IT Certification & Career Training Guide