Example Of Laying Down The Foundations For Success Essay
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Success is not served in a silver platter. It is always a result of hard work, perseverance, dedication and commitment. No one who is just sitting or doing a mediocre job achieves success. College success then is guided by principles including time management, managing priorities, focus, goal-driven, and managing stress. These are some of the ingredients of success. For me, intelligence is one factor to success but without the aforementioned strategies, a person’s intelligence is a sham.
In laying the foundations of success, individuals should know where they are going. It means that there should be a clear goal to be able to lay down the strategies in reaching the goal. It is not just success but people should be clear on what kind of success they want. In the case of college students, the primary goal is to graduate with flying colors. Students who are not goal-driven usually end up as mediocre graduates which will reflect on their future jobs. After laying the goal, the ladder to reach the goal should be built.
The ladder to success should be built with the aforementioned principles of time management, managing priorities, focus and managing stress. The ladder should also be accompanied with commitment, perseverance, hard work and dedication.
Time management as mentioned in Essentials Study Skills is “Knowing how to maintain a focus and concentrate on tasks leads to greater productivity, more successes, and less stress” (68). As students we usually have the attitude to flounder in circles making our time wasted. The skill of time management is having the sense of control over time. This means that students like me need to sort all the activities at hand and lay them according to priorities and allot appropriate time for each. Having able to do this, we realize that we have much time to utilize for important matters leading to our goals.
If we are able to finish our activities on time, we acquire the sense of self confidence that we can be able to do the next tasks in an excellent manner. Procrastination is not a word to ponder. It is a word for mediocre people. Life in procrastination will only lead to stress that sometimes, we cannot control. Most of the time, bad time management always result to frustration that sometimes lead to failure if not manage properly.
The need to have the control over time is imperative if we want success. Also, being able to manage time effectively will result to having quality time to friends and family without the feeling of pressure.
Time management practice should be reflected not only to things related to being punctual in fulfilling tasks but it should also reflect in every facet of our lives. One is in how we take information. Students with good time management practice will prefer to take information that are accurate and factual. In finishing tasks, those with excellent management attitudes tend to think of creative ways to finish a given task. There are attitudes to avoid when it comes to time management that include 1) the last minute adrenaline rush in meeting deadlines, 2) spontaneity and flexibility with schedules and tasks, and 3) being constrained of time. We need to develop in ourselves the sense of organization and orderliness with schedules, making use of to-do-list to complete our plans of action, and making short-term and long-term goals that coincide with our ultimate goal to success. Being able to internalize all these will make our lives in line and we avoid going astray.
In making our to-do-list, let us consider the pie of life which consists of three major parts which are school, work, and leisure. This pie of life is not only appropriate for single students but is also apt for working and parent students. In laying down the specifics of the pie of life, we always go back to the principle of managing priorities. Our major priorities are those that answer to our goal. Other social commitments however should not be taken aside because they are of importance to our lives. As good time managers, we should be able to lay all the activities related to school, work and leisure and allot time accordingly. The bulk of time should be allotted to the activities that will help us reach goals. Therefore, the divisions in our pies should not be equally divided into three parts. For me, the largest part of the pie will be school, then seconded by work and the least will be leisure. I believe that those who value leisure more than the two parts of the pie are procrastinators. In addition, our pies should have a purpose. As we lay down our daily and weekly activities, we should always be clear of the objective or the purpose that our activities are feeding into.
On the other hand, we should be good managers of stress. Once we mismanage our levels of stress, it will reflect to every facets of our goal-oriented life. One of the strategies to manage stress is called coping. There are four types of coping according to the Essential Study Skills which include behavioural, cognitive, emotional and physical. Behavioural coping needs stress managers to make the time management plans a habit. If effective management plans are implemented, we can eliminate stressors as most of the stressors of students are deadlines that are not met. Cognitive coping is about putting in mind that stressors are challenges instead of threats. It also compels as not to be perfectionists in order not to end up frustrated which leads to stress. Emotional coping is using our support system. It is always best to seek advice from those who know us better than ourselves and they are our closest friends and relatives. Lastly, Physical coping is utilizing good exercise like yoga to help relax our system. Among the four coping mechanisms to manage stress behavioural is still the best method. Once we subject ourselves to change of habit, the stressors will eventually be eliminated. To iterate, it is imperative to make our pies of lives work.
There are reflective ways to manage stress called intrapersonal. This is a process to know ourselves better. We are able to get our spiritual, physical and emotional in sync. We always hear the phrase, find your center. This is done through calming activities like yoga, prayer, sauna, and warm bath. These activities can make us temporarily escape the realities. Journal writing is not a cliché because it is still one of the most effective ways to release negative energies. It is in this process that we can throw all our emotions and reflect.
Successful people have deleted procrastination in their vocabularies. But it is not easy to have that word deleted. It takes courage and dedication. Procrastination is a habit to postpone activities if they are not yet near the deadline. It is a habit that needs to be scraped from our system. If we want success, we should train ourselves to aim for the higher priorities rather than the lower priorities. Most of the procrastinators are even proud that they can finish their tasks in several hours or minutes before the deadline. For a goal-oriented person, procrastination is not something to be proud of. It is something to be ashamed of as it reduces a person’s credibility. Success does not need any procrastinator. It needs people who persevere to accomplish tasks before the deadline and patiently reviews the work for any additions while waiting for the deadline. It needs people who are able to sacrifice their happy hours to finish something important. It needs those who know how to discern which is of high importance and vice versa.
There is a need to iterate that achieving success is not just a walk in the park. It needs high level of commitment, perseverance, and hard work. A successful person is the one who embraces the aforementioned behaviours. Time management alone needs tons and tons of sacrifice. A goal-oriented person needs to sacrifice some of the cravings to just sit back and relax as every second is important. However, it does not mean that people eyeing for success are not allowed to enjoy. It is why time management is the key to be able to balance life. It is the reason why the pie of life was created to guide people that life is should still be balance regardless of the many things people want to do in their lifetime. In the pie of life leisure holds one slice and it is not allowed to be subsumed with other larger slice. It is one independent slice that its absence will not complete the pie. It is therefore imperative that in our daily or weekly plans of activities, leisure is included.
If the pie of life is implemented like a habit, then again, there is no reason to be stressed. A life without stress is a life without frustrations and a life with clear focus. Implementing the above mentioned strategies does not take overnight in order to be able to make it as a habit. It takes dedication combined with the indomitable spirit to carry out the planned strategy activities and replicate it a thousand times over. A goal-oriented person needs lots of courage and commitment to eliminate bad habits and changed it with an organized and purposeful set of activities. Failing to carry out the planned activities should not frustrate us; instead, we should draw lessons from the failure and apply it in the next plans. We aim high as we are not mediocre but we are still people who sometimes go astray. But we should always pull ourselves together and walk towards the goal. That is the indomitable will to succeed.
Wong, Linda. “Using Time Effectively.” Essential Study Skills, 8th Edition. Pp. 68-97.
Wong, Linda. “Discovering Your Learning Styles and Preferences.” Essential Study Skills, 8th Edition. Pp. 5-36.
Wong, Linda. “Creating and Achieving Goals.” Essential Study Skills, 8th Edition. Pp. 119-125.
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