How do you motivate yourself

blueagle78blueagle78 Member Posts: 7 ■□□□□□□□□□
Guys I've been trying to study for MCSE/MCSA for quite sometime now. I've been in IT support field for well over 4 years now so I've got pretty good knowledge/understand of how Windows OS works. My biggest problem is I would study for few days and then I don't want to look at the book. I've no problem with playing around with my home lab for hours but studying isn't easy for me.
Those of you who've done self-studies in any certification, what you do and how you guys motivate yourself so you study at least for an hour or two everyday?
I can't enrol for classes because my pocket doesn't allow me that and in England you're looking at good few thousands for MCSE classes.
Any advise I receive from you wise men would be great appreciated.
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Comments

  • dynamikdynamik Banned Posts: 12,312 ■■■■■■■■■□
    I study while I play Halo. I'll play a game, then study for 15 minutes, and then repeat. Then a friend get's on and the night is lost icon_sad.gif (sometimes you have to appear offline in order to get anything done). Just break it up in small amounts regardless of what you choose for your distraction. Play guitar, do the dishes, do some pushups, etc. I can't look at a book for hours on end either. You can also try mixing up your studies with something like CBT Nuggets.
  • undomielundomiel Member Posts: 2,818
    I'll confess up front -- all of the books I used for studying I never finished. I skipped to the sections that looked like they would fill definite gaps in my knowledge i.e. performance monitoring or DHCP. I'd skim through sections and read more carefully the areas that looked good. Then I'd get bored with it and I would go jump on the lab. That has worked best for me for all of my exams. The books would give me baseline ideas to work with and then I would go and experiment with the ideas in my labs and break what I can. Then of course fix it. I would also do any of the interesting labs that they had in the books. Google was there for any quick fixes I would need and I would also search these forums if I was in a bind or needed ideas. There are also good scenarios in here that you can convert into a lab as well. So keep at it and don't forget to have fun studying!
    Jumping on the IT blogging band wagon -- http://www.jefferyland.com/
  • Megadeth4168Megadeth4168 Member Posts: 2,157
    It's tough for sure! I haven't really been in study mode since I passed the 70-296 a few months back. Now the weather is getting nicer, so it will be even harder to get into that mode. I do confess that my best study habits have come from me escaping the luxuries of City life. When I would go visit my dad in the middle of nowhere and bring with me only my books! Then I would read for hours! If I was at home in the City though, I usually could only get trough 1 chapter per day!
    These days, I haven't even been able to do that... Though I did get a new laptop, so that has been consuming some time..... Oh and Mario Kart Wii has been taking up my time too!

    *Sigh* Now I feel like I'm slacking!
  • blueagle78blueagle78 Member Posts: 7 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Thanks for all your tips guys, I really like dynamik's suggestion of doing something interesting and then studying and then going back to that interesting thing again! I think that could work.
  • snadamsnadam Member Posts: 2,234 ■■■■□□□□□□
    dynamik wrote:
    I study while I play Halo. I'll play a game, then study for 15 minutes, and then repeat. Then a friend get's on and the night is lost icon_sad.gif (sometimes you have to appear offline in order to get anything done). Just break it up in small amounts regardless of what you choose for your distraction. Play guitar, do the dishes, do some pushups, etc. I can't look at a book for hours on end either. You can also try mixing up your studies with something like CBT Nuggets.


    as much as I try to avoid this method, its what I do. I figure I read a chapter, then browse the web, play guitar, work out...etc for a bit and then go back. I cant play video games for 15 minutes. its too damn hard to, and you end up playing for 3 hours that way :D

    I ALWAYS feel like im slacking when I do this though. give it a try and see if ti works!
    **** ARE FOR CHUMPS! Don't be a chump! Validate your material with certguard.com search engine

    :study: Current 2015 Goals: JNCIP-SEC JNCIS-ENT CCNA-Security
  • undomielundomiel Member Posts: 2,818
    The video game study method for me usually turns into 10 minutes of bookwork and 2+ hours of video games. :)
    Jumping on the IT blogging band wagon -- http://www.jefferyland.com/
  • dynamikdynamik Banned Posts: 12,312 ■■■■■■■■■□
    snadam wrote:
    dynamik wrote:
    I study while I play Halo. I'll play a game, then study for 15 minutes, and then repeat. Then a friend get's on and the night is lost icon_sad.gif (sometimes you have to appear offline in order to get anything done). Just break it up in small amounts regardless of what you choose for your distraction. Play guitar, do the dishes, do some pushups, etc. I can't look at a book for hours on end either. You can also try mixing up your studies with something like <a href=http://www.cbtnuggets.com/techexams target=”_blank”>CBT Nuggets</a>.


    as much as I try to avoid this method, its what I do. I figure I read a chapter, then browse the web, play guitar, work out...etc for a bit and then go back. I cant play video games for 15 minutes. its too damn hard to play for 3 hours that way :D

    I ALWAYS feel like im slacking when I do this though. give it a try and see if ti works!

    I think I posted this in a similar topic, but if you're looking at for specific games, check out Puzzle Quest or Peggle. They're nice distractions, but I lose interest after about 15-20 minutes, so they work well for this purpose. High-action games can burn up the hours quickly.
  • snadamsnadam Member Posts: 2,234 ■■■■□□□□□□
    dynamik wrote:
    snadam wrote:
    dynamik wrote:
    I study while I play Halo. I'll play a game, then study for 15 minutes, and then repeat. Then a friend get's on and the night is lost icon_sad.gif (sometimes you have to appear offline in order to get anything done). Just break it up in small amounts regardless of what you choose for your distraction. Play guitar, do the dishes, do some pushups, etc. I can't look at a book for hours on end either. You can also try mixing up your studies with something like <a href=http://www.cbtnuggets.com/techexams target=”_blank”><a href=http://www.cbtnuggets.com/techexams target=”_blank”>CBT Nuggets</a></a>.


    as much as I try to avoid this method, its what I do. I figure I read a chapter, then browse the web, play guitar, work out...etc for a bit and then go back. I cant play video games for 15 minutes. its too damn hard to play for 3 hours that way :D

    I ALWAYS feel like im slacking when I do this though. give it a try and see if ti works!

    I think I posted this in a similar topic, but if you're looking at for specific games, check out Puzzle Quest or Peggle. They're nice distractions, but I lose interest after about 15-20 minutes, so they work well for this purpose. High-action games can burn up the hours quickly.


    haha, my friends wife plays puzzle quest. We were totally ripping on her, as she is not the nerdy game type :D It does look somewhat entertaining though.
    **** ARE FOR CHUMPS! Don't be a chump! Validate your material with certguard.com search engine

    :study: Current 2015 Goals: JNCIP-SEC JNCIS-ENT CCNA-Security
  • undomielundomiel Member Posts: 2,818
    I'm talking the ability for hours of tetris here mind you. :)

    Though usually it ends up being an rpg or ddr or donkey konga these days.
    Jumping on the IT blogging band wagon -- http://www.jefferyland.com/
  • ilcram19-2ilcram19-2 Banned Posts: 436
    alot of the times depends on people's goals, if becoming and MCSE will give you a better job but you planning to stay working where you are working at now then dont worry take your time
    just focus and be confident make sure you have your goals set and just get on the books
  • JDMurrayJDMurray MSIT InfoSec CISSP SSCP GSOM GSEC EnCE C|EH Cloud+ CySA+ CASP+ PenTest+ Security+ Surf City, USAAdmin Posts: 12,675 Admin
    Schedule and pay for the the exam you are studying for to take in six weeks and you'll study your a$$ off not wanting to waste the money failing the exam. Werks fer me! :P
  • whistlerwhistler Member Posts: 108
    12/31/2008

    The approximate date of my layoff got me started again doing the testing for certificates and keeps me moving forward.
  • gojericho0gojericho0 Member Posts: 1,059 ■■■□□□□□□□
  • JDMurrayJDMurray MSIT InfoSec CISSP SSCP GSOM GSEC EnCE C|EH Cloud+ CySA+ CASP+ PenTest+ Security+ Surf City, USAAdmin Posts: 12,675 Admin
    gojericho0 wrote:
    Chicks dig IT icon_thumright.gif
    Uh, yeah. Certs and having a HAM radio license too. icon_rolleyes.gif
  • LBC90805LBC90805 Member Posts: 247
    JDMurray wrote:
    Schedule and pay for the the exam you are studying for to take in six weeks and you'll study your a$$ off not wanting to waste the money failing the exam. Werks fer me! :P

    W3rks for me too! I farted around with the ICND1 books for about four months. Not wanting to schedule the CCENT in fear of failing.

    I took the advice of that Dude who teaches the CBTnuggets videos and went ahead and scheduled the exam knowing that if I wasn't fully prepared or just feared failing too much I could reschedule up until 24 hours prior to exam time. That worked for me...

    Once I scheduled the test I studied MY BALLS OFF!!! I was way over preparted now that I look back and probably could have taken the exam about a month or two prior. I passed the exam on Cinco de Mayo this year.

    I was suppost to schedule the ICND2 exam today but haven't gotten around to it yet. My girl who is on my back about scheduling isn't here at the moment to remind me about it, cough cough.

    Once I do schedule I feel all this anxiety and I can't really rest. Always thumbing through the book after writing up notes finguring that I have missed something that was way important that I need to remember.
  • AhriakinAhriakin SupremeNetworkOverlord Member Posts: 1,799 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I listen to music while I study. I love music, and I do mean L O V E ( I used to compose a bit and plan to get back to it after the CCIE). So if I start phasing out I just focus on the song a bit more then get back to the books. My PC is my hifi and I tend to buy Ebooks nowadays when possible so it's pretty easy to combine the 2. So instead of thinking of a long study sessions I think of my playlist for the evening and then happen to have something technical to read while I do :). Works for me anyway. Right now I'm looping 'Velocifero' and 'Witching Hour' by Ladytron...not that you were actually interested but both albums are superb, kind've a mix of The Cranes and Mew with a bit of Depeche Mode thrown in :), highly recommended.
    Also Vitamin C helps you concentrate. I usually take 500-1000 MLs before a sessions or exam.

    I agree with scheduling your exam as early as you can, it definitely helps to have some goalposts, even if you have to move them later.
    We responded to the Year 2000 issue with "Y2K" solutions...isn't this the kind of thinking that got us into trouble in the first place?
  • sir_creamy_sir_creamy_ Inactive Imported Users Posts: 298
    JDMurray wrote:
    Uh, yeah. Certs and having a HAM radio license too. icon_rolleyes.gif

    The HAM radio opener is the atomic bomb of pick-up lines.

    ...and if that doesn't work, resort to a discussion of the rise and fall of Wang computers:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wang_Laboratories
    Bachelor of Computer Science

    [Forum moderators are my friends]
  • sir_creamy_sir_creamy_ Inactive Imported Users Posts: 298
    ...because everyone likes to say "Wang" every once and awhile. It's a fun word to say. "Wang"
    Bachelor of Computer Science

    [Forum moderators are my friends]
  • JDMurrayJDMurray MSIT InfoSec CISSP SSCP GSOM GSEC EnCE C|EH Cloud+ CySA+ CASP+ PenTest+ Security+ Surf City, USAAdmin Posts: 12,675 Admin
    ...because everyone likes to say "Wang" every once and awhile. It's a fun word to say. "Wang"
    Rhymes With "Tang"

    20000922h.jpg
  • Paul BozPaul Boz Member Posts: 2,620 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I've found that unless you enjoy the stuff it's pretty hard to stay motivated. I could never do MS cert stuff or work because I have zero interest in it. Thankfully I greatly enjoy networking so anything network-related gets sucked into the vortex.
    CCNP | CCIP | CCDP | CCNA, CCDA
    CCNA Security | GSEC |GCFW | GCIH | GCIA
    [email protected]
    http://twitter.com/paul_bosworth
    Blog: http://www.infosiege.net/
  • RobertKaucherRobertKaucher A cornfield in OhioMember Posts: 4,299 ■■■■■■■■■■
    http://www.salary.com/

    I visit it when I feel lazy.
  • PashPash Member Posts: 1,600 ■■■■■□□□□□
    Paul Boz wrote:
    I've found that unless you enjoy the stuff it's pretty hard to stay motivated. I could never do MS cert stuff or work because I have zero interest in it. Thankfully I greatly enjoy networking so anything network-related gets sucked into the vortex.

    I thought that as well, but as we all know - IT is one huge subject, i love using vmware and labbing up microsoft servers/clients. Helps a ton when you have issues at work and your like "well I can try and replicate that on my lab". Of course, same applies to networking as well.
    DevOps Engineer and Security Champion. https://blog.pash.by - I am trying to find my writing style, so please bear with me.
  • ironlungironlung Member Posts: 97 ■■□□□□□□□□
    I have to agree with Robert.I do the same thing.That usually gives me a boost.
    Sometimes you just gotta bite the bullet.
  • SieSie Member Posts: 1,195
    I have a small monkey with shocky stick incase I drift off.

    On a serious note I also have to be interested in what im studying or reading, if im not then I have to either make it interesting (Do it in a lab etc) or do it instead of something less interesting (IE Mowing the grass)
    Foolproof systems don't take into account the ingenuity of fools
  • MishraMishra Member Posts: 2,468 ■■■■□□□□□□
    (posted from another thread)

    Before I chose my career path I made it a point to try and be excited about what I was going to learn and accomplish as I started my path to a great career.

    So #1, I have to be excited to want to read and learn the material presented to me. I don't want to learn about chemistry but I do want to know what voltages power supplies provide for the computer and what temperatures are acceptable. I want to know the information for the fun of it!

    #2 I have to focus on learning as I read. I don't read just to look at words and try to memorize. I read to try and understand every thing the writer is trying to teach. A lot of the time I am analyzing what I just read which keeps me interested and makes me feel good when I figure something out. "Okay so an operating system is basically the interface between a user and the computer. It has to talk with the hardware and make it do what it wants. Okay so there must be a bunch of things that were created to interface with that hardware which in this chapter they called that the HAL. So if I wanted to write my own operating system then I would probably need to start with the Kernel/HAL." Just thoughts like that the entire time I'm reading.

    #3 I have to have goals in mind. I am already excited to read and learn the material. And I can achieve my MCSE and have a great bargaining chip for future jobs! Cool.


    So in my opinion it is all in the state of mind. I have a problem with motivation so I have had to FORCE myself to LOVE IT crap. If you just can't get yourself to love it then it might be time to think about another career. I totally understand where the problem of actually reading the material may come from. This isn't my dream career but it is a good start to life.
    My blog http://www.calegp.com

    You may learn something!
  • vColevCole Member Posts: 1,573 ■■■■■■■□□□
    I'm in the same boat as you. I can't get motivated to study.

    99% time I can't even get motivated to get out of bed in the morning. icon_redface.gif
  • dynamikdynamik Banned Posts: 12,312 ■■■■■■■■■□
    99% time I can't even get motivated to get out of bed in the morning. icon_redface.gif

    Your diet is clearly lacking caffeine icon_lol.gif
  • undomielundomiel Member Posts: 2,818
    dynamik wrote:
    99% time I can't even get motivated to get out of bed in the morning. icon_redface.gif

    Your diet is clearly lacking caffeine icon_lol.gif

    You diet is clearly lacking bananas!
    Jumping on the IT blogging band wagon -- http://www.jefferyland.com/
  • GundamtdkGundamtdk Member Posts: 210
    It does require discipline to get certificated.

    But I find it is makes is faster if you study in reverse.

    Instead of reading the book, doing the practice exams and then schedule the actual exam, I find it is better to do the practice exams, study on the questions that you go wrong on the exam and then when you get enough of them right, set the exam date.
  • vColevCole Member Posts: 1,573 ■■■■■■■□□□
    dynamik wrote:
    99% time I can't even get motivated to get out of bed in the morning. icon_redface.gif

    Your diet is clearly lacking caffeine icon_lol.gif

    I have coffee in the morning. icon_wink.gif
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