3 Ways To Be A Better College Student

Matt Lillywhite


I know what it’s like to be a terrible student.

For the majority of my time during high school, I’d often daydream and think about a better life. My teachers made learning so boring that I would’ve done practically anything to escape the British education system. I’m not exaggerating when I say that I absolutely hated it.

A passionate hatred of high school made me think that learning was dull and completely pointless. But it didn’t take long for me to admit that I was wrong.

Once I started learning in a variety of different styles that worked for me, psychology, languages, and many other topics quickly became extremely enjoyable. I loved every moment of my education.

So what changed? My mindset. Implementing the following strategies helped me cultivate a passion for learning that quite literally changed the way I interact with the world. Hopefully, they will do the same for you, too.

Find Interesting Ways To Learn New Things.

I used to hate learning because I hated school. The content was often taught in a way that was dull and repetitive. So naturally, I began to mentally associate education with extreme boredom. But when I started teaching various topics to myself, it was like a switch flipped in my mind. Suddenly, I had the freedom to learn in whatever way I wished. So that’s what I did.

I’ll use French as an example. I spent five years studying the language in High School and came out being able to say little more than “Bonjour” (hello) and “Merci” (thank you).

But when I started implementing different learning strategies, I quickly made a lot more progress than I ever thought possible. I watched loads of French YouTube videos, Movies and enjoyed every single moment of learning the French language.

Find exciting ways to learn new topics that work for you. Watch videos, read fascinating books or do anything else that you enjoy.

When you have fun learning something, it no longer becomes a tedious chore. Instead, it’ll quickly become something you genuinely love doing. Quoting an article published by Forbes:

“All learning essentially boils down to self-improvement. Whether you’re improving an academic skill, picking up a new hobby, or trying to expand your business, your efforts lead to meaningful personal growth. Your knowledge is an investment because it helps you become a more well-rounded person. It helps you connect with others. It gives you the confidence you need to succeed in other areas of your life.”

Become An Intellectual Submarine Of Knowledge.

What do I mean by that? Try to submerge yourself in whatever topic you want to learn. Immerse yourself as much as possible, and make learning a part of your daily routine.

According to research published by VeryWellMind, using a variety of different strategies to immerse yourself in a topic is extremely useful:

“Find a way to rehearse the information both verbally and visually. This might involve describing what you learned to a friend, taking notes, or drawing a mind map. By learning in more than one way, you’re further cementing the knowledge in your mind.”

I started learning Portuguese a couple of weeks ago. Since I’m currently unable to travel due to various restrictions, I changed the settings on my phone, laptop, and social media applications to show everything in the Portuguese language. As a result of implementing this strategy, I’ve familiarized myself with a lot of vocabulary very quickly.

You can do the same. If you want to learn more about a topic or skill, find ways to immerse yourself in it. For example:

  • You could become a better writer by frequently reading popular articles and identifying what characteristics are essential for making your work a lot more interesting.
  • You could massively enhance your fitness by studying successful athletes’ routines and then implementing them into your own life.
  • You could improve your finances by frequently watching/reading a lot of content about strategies people use to save more money and increase their annual income.

Learning something new can be difficult. But when you immerse yourself in a specific topic, it’ll undoubtedly become much easier.

Reward Yourself Whenever You Achieve A Goal.

I started doing this a couple of years ago, and it’s made learning new topics a lot more enjoyable. Why? Because I know there’s a reward for working hard to achieve my goals. Specifically, a few slices of freshly cut mango.

Find an incentive to reward yourself that works for you. Maybe you want to watch an hour of your favorite TV show. Perhaps you fancy treating yourself to a chocolate chip muffin or a few slices of pizza. As Marina Khidekel writes in Thrive Global:

“When we commit to a new habit, our journey to the end goal isn’t always linear. There may be days when we’re heads-down focused on getting there, but there will also likely be days where our motivation dwindles. Along the way, giving ourselves small rewards for sticking with our goals can motivate us to keep going.”

Try to reward yourself whenever you achieve a goal or learn something new. You deserve it.

Once I began applying the above points, It became much easier to learn new things more efficiently. And once you start doing the same, I’m confident you’ll see huge benefits, as well. So what are you waiting for?

Start now.

Photo via Unsplash

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