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Studying What to do in my spare time to be more successful

  1. Aug 7, 2016 #1
    Hello PF.
    Recently i read a book called "How Successful People Grow" and the writer said that in order to arrive to my goals i have to grow everyday and make learning and growing intentional.
    So i came here for advice on how can i grow everyday to be a better physics student , a better physicist and a more successful scientist.
    What can i do in my spare time ?
    I am in a physics undergraduate program this year so i want something to do if i have some time to contribute to my success.
    Please give me advice even if someone already answered the threat i need different perspectives and point of views.
    Also tell me about experiences you had with these activities and the outcomes. Thanks.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 7, 2016 #2

    symbolipoint

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    You need to answer this for yourself. What do YOU believe is to be important for your development? What are YOUR interests which you want to know and learn to do (BE SPECIFIC)? What are YOUR IMPULSES which may motivate you to try? What problem do you want to study or solve in the place where you are? What do you like doing? Your current activities may give a clue to what more you could do.

    If your main interests are Mathematics and Physics, try studying ahead. Try studying something which you already studied in order to learn it better.
     
  4. Aug 8, 2016 #3
    I want to be relly good at math and physics but are you sure that just prestudying and restudying are the key ?
     
  5. Aug 8, 2016 #4

    symbolipoint

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    Yes, but not the only key. You may need something else or something more.
    If you want to grow as a physics person, you need to have impulses which lead you to practice scientific things. Other people cannot ... tell you what those are. Growing as a physics student will require analytical thinking with Algebra and Trigonometry skills, because physics relies on these, and more Mathematics.

    What's happening right now? High school student? College student? Starting college or university in the next few days? What have you done in your life which is technical or scientific, INCLUDING what is outside the classroom? What kind of academic behavior do you conform to? What academic behavior have you tried to avoid?
     
  6. Aug 8, 2016 #5
    I am starting university in 20 days. I spend my spare time reading science books , surfing the web for the most up-to-date science discoveries, I watch a lot of courses on Khan Academy and other sites about advanced topics than i didn't yet take, also I tend to dpend some clear nights on the roof stargazing and identifying planets and stars. Concerning what is inside the classroom i tend to always be available for any questions regarding physics or maths. I cannot really answer the academic behavior because i am switching to university from high school. But when i was in school i used to only study hard before exams because the topics were too easy and i scored good ( last exam gor 99/110 on physics and 128/160 in math).
     
  7. Aug 8, 2016 #6
    You 'win' at the student life. You try to gain as much respect as possible of the type of student you respect and feel most connected with. That almost always means something besides just scoring high marks. Whatever it be organizing parties, being pleasant to work with in group projects, being a good presenter, being good at sports, being inclusive, forming a few deep friendships, organizing academic activities, make connections with business or other institutes, connect different groups of students, connect native with foreign students, volunteer, work with children, whatever it is, you do that.
     
  8. Aug 8, 2016 #7

    symbolipoint

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    What Asteropaeus said is good. What I was trying to point to in posts #2 and #4 is, what have you done/been doing along the lines of personal curiosity, like disassembling some technical device to try to learn how it works, or what is inside of it; what do you build, what do you try to build, what do you repair (like equipment) or what do you try to repair and maybe learn in the effort; any wood-working tasks; any technical crafts like Photography (use a dark-room at home, develop film on your own, make prints using an enlarger); or artistic crafts like carving, sculpting, painting, pottery or ceramic forming (making items from clay); maybe also anything possibly technical with foods, like studying or redeveloping breads, cheese, wine-making or beer brewing. Have you ever tried to make your own ink and tested its use with any writing device such as fountain pen, or even a quill from a bird?
     
  9. Aug 8, 2016 #8
    I liked to make plans for some simple devices that i could use but never made. I started self-learning wood sculpture last week and i tend to get better. I try to repair any problem in the house by searching for the constitution of the machine(refrigerator, freezer, microwave...) on the internet and then try to make logic my way out. I did some painting classes and i like to sketch sometimes. I have tried a lot of things too : cycling, archery, coding... but i never really last in any hobby or i just stay in and out.
     
  10. Aug 8, 2016 #9

    symbolipoint

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    That's a start. There described is something consistent with analytical thinking for problem-solving, and reading & following directions. Both of these are important for the character of someone who studies Physics and who may wish to design computer programs. You also express some potential to be a technician. Less clear about how much of that potential is in you, but some.
     
  11. Aug 9, 2016 #10

    Stephen Tashi

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    Don't believe everything you read in self-help books.

    If you spend all your time "growing", you won't have any spare time.
     
  12. Aug 9, 2016 #11
    I don't always believe it but it's logical.
    And i am growing in spare time. And what can i do in growing in that spare time is the question.
     
  13. Aug 10, 2016 #12
    What's the point of spare time? It's what is left over.

    I kind of agree you should find a way to keep growing as a person. But what is 'growing', and how does one do it?

    I feel myself that maybe a person changes from A to B to C, when one starts to prefer B over A and then later C over B, but it is not obvious that C > B > A.


    Maybe being very conscious about that you can 'grow' as a person, and that people and experiences have certain effects and that you can go out there and deliberately encounter them, rather than be passive and accidentally miss all of them, all that may help.
     
  14. Aug 11, 2016 #13
    I don't think I got your point here but i am trying to understand it.
    All i want really is to be better in my field which is physics and maths.
    For example Feynman took maths for a hobby an solved one of the hardest maths problems on Earth.
    But how did he start ? How can i be as good ? And if i start today where do i start knowing that i don't want to study something that is in my physics program because then it will be useless i think?
    Correct if i am wrong please and help me answer those questions.
     
  15. Aug 11, 2016 #14

    symbolipoint

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    You have not grown enough during this brief, few days of interchange on this forum thread. You continue to believe that other people can tell you accurately HOW to grow. They cannot do this. YOU MUST DO IT! Finally, YOU must grow, according to whatever inside of you makes you grow.
     
  16. Aug 11, 2016 #15
    That was helpful thanks.
     
  17. Aug 11, 2016 #16
    Being better at math is not growing as a person. That's just being good at math.
     
  18. Aug 13, 2016 #17

    chiro

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    Hey jamalkoiyess.

    I'd try and define what you think "success" actually is first and then think about why you think that and what to do about it.

    Success is a word that has as many meanings (potentially anyway) as there are people and what is successful for one (and what motivates that person) is not for another.

    Answering this question will probably give you an insight into what motivates and drives you and I can't emphasize the point enough about the idea that success is not a constant amongst everyone - and if you are basing your idea of someone else's definition then you may live a very disappointing life.

    If success is related to prestige, money, rank, or some other social indicator then it means that you will be inclined to do certain things and be motivated accordingly. Lots of people are motivated by socially inclined goals and there is nothing wrong with that - in fact understanding that will help you assess whether you are motivated for the reasons you specify that you think or say you are and if that really is the case then at least you can assess whether what you're doing is in line with that.

    Others may not be motivated for the same reasons and that is ok as well.

    If you are motivated for any reason then assessing what would stop you gives a good indicator of what may or may not stop you from doing something and this is really the key - understanding what would make you quit gives you a good idea of what actually drives you and when you make this resolution then things should make a lot more "sense".

    This and the combination that success is different for everybody should help you in your decision making.
     
  19. Aug 13, 2016 #18

    symbolipoint

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    jamalkoiyess originally wanted to know what to do in his spare time to be successful. His main interests are stated to be Physics and Mathematics. He has been given some guidance here and must decide what he could and should do. He will make what he believes are his best choices. He can study ahead, or review something he has already learned or already studied; or he might explore something that he finds to be interesting. His own life experiences can be his guide. Something practical may be helpful for his personal growth, maybe like from engineering, some computer programming skills, or maybe something in art. Art can be any creative art or any technical art of interest. He described the beginnings of some personal growth in one of his posts on this 'thread'. We cannot tell him exactly what to do. We can only try to suggest, to try to give some guidance.
     
  20. Aug 13, 2016 #19
    That was very helpful thanks for your time.
     
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