What keeps you motivated in getting your certification (i.e.CCNA)?

tayro12tayro12 Member Posts: 17 ■□□□□□□□□□
Hi Guys I just want to know what keeps you going? I'm currently studying for the 640-802 while working from 40 to 50 hours a week. I've been reading some posts here, some people taking up multiple certifications while working and I can't imagine how they do that. Maybe you can include your study habits/schedules in taking up your CCNA.



  • joshmadakorjoshmadakor Member Posts: 495 ■■■■□□□□□□
    It really helps to have a job where you can study while at work (which many of us do). That, and hit the weekends hard :)
    WGU B.S. Information Technology (Completed January 2013)
  • alxxalxx Member Posts: 755
    Setting goals - short ,medium and long term.

    Thats whats kept me going through my degrees (12 years part time so far, currently last semester for my engineering degree then 2 science subjects to go for physics degree)
    Goals CCNA by dec 2013, CCNP by end of 2014
  • joshmadakorjoshmadakor Member Posts: 495 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Damn, props to you!!!! Engineering degree part time, that's amazing.
    WGU B.S. Information Technology (Completed January 2013)
  • sharpy56sharpy56 Member Posts: 106 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Yeah I found that actually booking in an exam helps to, not saying to book it in for the following week give yourself a month or so, so then you actually study due to there being money on the line. Do your practice tests and if you aren't ready to pass it you can always reschedule until your passing your practice tests!

    I am aiming for one exam every 2-3 months only way to do it when working full time.
  • rob_crossleyrob_crossley Member Posts: 38 ■■□□□□□□□□
    This forum has helped keep me motivated and picked me up when id failed the cisco exam 3 times! Cost me alot of money but it was all worth it in the end as im now a 3rd line Engineer and doing the job i've always wanted to do since i was @ school. I agree with booking the exam to give you a target to work towards. But don't sell yourself short give yourself plenty of time for reading/labbing.
    Study Hard! Learn Hard! Earn Hard!
    "If you stop learnin, you stop earnin!"
  • chopstickschopsticks Member Posts: 389
    To be frank, it is this forum and all the great people here.
  • quinnyflyquinnyfly Member Posts: 243
    I set the goals and then do my best to make them!!

    I actually work well under pressure....that is to say <I put myself under pressure> by booking my exam, paying for it obviously at time of booking and then try my best to obtain the cert within my specified time. I know that contradict's what many of us say (me included) but that works for me.

    I also believe you need to make studying part of your life style, it almost becomes a habit and I find that I feel I have let myself down if I miss some planned study time. I suppose it's like those that go to the gym, when you miss a few sessions you migt be somehow annoyed with yourself. It's different for everyone when it comes to keeping and staying motivated, personally, besides the above, I also believe in finding a balance between life/work/play and study. But so long as you have an objective for your study (not just another cert) but a long term goal like a particular job, and you keep that focus....that's my motivation.

    OH yer, and my Wife is very supportive also:)
    The Wings of Technology
  • swildswild Member Posts: 828
    This forum helps a ton, no doubt. Seeing that others have been and are going through the same thing I am makes me think I can do it.

    Now that I have passed several certs through WGU, I am pretty good at judging how long a course will take me to go through and I setup the exam before I even start studying. That way I know exactly how much I expect out of myself each day. One of the more useful things that WGU makes you do before starting, is to make a study schedule. Map out your typical week, marking down work, meals, commute, sleep(a must to schedule!), family, relaxation, and finally study time.

    WGU wants you to be able to schedule 20 hours a week for study time. That's a real easy number for me to hit: 2 hours each weeknight and 10 hours on the weekends, split up around whatever else I am doing. 20 hours is great, and I agree that's the minimum you need to devote to studies to finish in a reasonable amount of time.

    I personally shoot for 30 and occasionally hit 40. Sundays are my biggest day with 10 to 14 hours of study time. At work, I generally have plenty of downtime so I study up to 6 hours a day there, averaging about 20 hours a week while at work. If I am swamped at work that day, I know I need to come home, eat, and hit the books. I usually don't do any studying on Saturdays and spend that time relaxing with my family. I have had to spend a couple of Saturdays studying either if I fall behind, or, more often, if it is taking me longer than I anticipated.
  • magwitchmagwitch Registered Users Posts: 9 ■□□□□□□□□□
    For me I find it's really important to build the habit until it just becomes part of the routine. If I have a tough day or I'm really tired I NEVER do no studying, even if I only read half a chapter for 5 minutes. I ALWAYS do something, so the daily habit is never broken. Last year I went on a three week overseas trip where I didn't study and the habit was totally broken. When I got home it took me another month before I cracked a book open.

    And, as others have said, the inspiration from other members of the forum. I read about guys with young kids, killer commutes, etc. who are driven to complete their certification goals. It's pretty inspiring.
  • quinnyflyquinnyfly Member Posts: 243
    I agree magwitch, huge effort for these people, I simply admire their dedication. Almost all things and jobs in IT take a mental toll, and yet these folks still manage to make time for all the important stuff (Family time/kids etc)....and continue study etc. No doubt is is hard for them, but to do this so often and for so long, it's a massive commitment and I fully respect their devotion and enthusiasm. We don't have kids "fur-kid family type" who have some spare time for ourselves and dinners, flying etc, but we still make our time for study and what ever activities we need to accomplish or achieve our goals <and we stick to them>. Short term is possible.......long term is probable if you stick to the short term....one step at a time, don't set too unrealistic goals, but remain focused on what you want....

    It's your life (not someone other than you, if you want it......work for it, If you believe in it, never stop or give up, you must believe in your own ability, know your stuff and prove it!!!) Get a thick skin, accept failures as a learning cure that make you stronger and get your A into G and move on.... Life is dearly bloddy short..trust me I know <I had a job where I used to deal with the dead and dying all day long>..... no rest for the living, just get on with it and deal with what you can. Life is really too short (all the young people are syaing: "not this crap gain?")

    If you really want it, you'll do it regardless of circumstance......"at the end of your days, it's too late to reflect the what-ifs"
    The Wings of Technology
  • tayro12tayro12 Member Posts: 17 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Thank You so much for sharing your personal views/experiences on this. I hope that everybody that feels a bit lost get the same inspiration from reading all of your replies.
  • odysseyeliteodysseyelite Member Posts: 504 ■■■■■□□□□□
    As others stated I try to book the exam. I know the rough amount it takes for me to study for an exam. I usually give myself 2-3 months depending what is involved: require class, books, lab, cbts.

    Learning something new, making myself more marketable so I can get the next big job keeps me going. I'm on a contract now, so at some point I will be back out on the marking looking for something new. Money\debt is always a factor. I got a decnt rate at my current job. 40% more than my last job. I've managed to pay off all credit card debt and now working on a emergency fund and paying down student loans. In my mind, I don't want to go back to what I was making when this contract is over with. I like not living paycheck to paycheck for once. Call it greed if you want, it keeps me going.
    Currently reading: Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action
  • JockVSJockJockVSJock Member Posts: 1,118
    I wrote my goal on the wall to get the CCENT and then move to the CCNA.

    The driving force behind it is better career.

    Also along with more meaningful work too.
    ***Freedom of Speech, Just Watch What You Say*** Example, Beware of CompTIA Certs (Deleted From Google Cached)

    "Its easier to deceive the masses then to convince the masses that they have been deceived."
  • lantechlantech Member Posts: 329
    My wife and daughter are what keeps me going.

    I work 12 hours a night. And there is no downtime in my job. I come home and see my daughter off to school and my wife off to work. I then try to study for an hour and go to bed and I'm up by 2:00 to get my daughter from school and take care of her tell it's time for me to go back to work and start it all over again. I don't get much study time until the weekends. Then I'm studying all day but even then with family commitments it's very difficult to find the time to study. I'm not sure if it wasn't for my wife and daughter I wouldn't be doing this right now. It's draining to say the least.

    But I keep going at it. Still studying for the ICND1 exam. Been doing it for close to 4 months now. But I know I have to keep going until I've got my CCNA. I'm slowing getting there I just have to keep at it.
    2012 Certification Goals

    CCENT: 04/16/2012
  • NetworkVeteranNetworkVeteran Member Posts: 2,338 ■■■■■■■■□□
    A motive keeps up motivation. If you're studying for an exam "just because", you're in much more danger of losing steam than someone who has a concrete reason for doing so. This applies not only to technical exams, but also in other areas of life such as weight loss, embracing new medical practices, etc. And the motive has to be one that speaks directly to you. Set aside an hour or two--maybe while you're jogging--to think about why you're doing this. That also helps when you're prioritizing. If you can't come up with a good motive, perhaps that time is better spent with your girlfriend, favorite hobby, or your children anyway! :)
  • RoguetadhgRoguetadhg CompTIA A+, Network+. Member Posts: 2,489 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I don't know, for me - there's always someone that would've done anything to be in your shoes. To be able to understand this stuff over doing something entirely different.

    Because I can. It helps keep me motivated when I think of friends that died over in the sandbox fresh from high school. Gotta live each day for the fullest. No regrets.

    Do what you can to the best of your abilities, and treat people as you would want to be treated, all the while making sure to keep things in perspective.
    In order to succeed, your desire for success should be greater than your fear of failure.
    TE Threads: How to study for the CCENT/CCNA, Introduction to Cisco Exams

  • razarrazar Member Posts: 65 ■■□□□□□□□□
    lantech wrote: »
    My wife and daughter are what keeps me going.

    This is what it is for me. Besides personal ambition of trying to better myself the main thing is to try and put my family in a better position. So this is my main motivation for studying for these exams.
  • tayro12tayro12 Member Posts: 17 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Hi All,

    Thank you very much for all the inspiring words, I'm please to inform you that I have passed my 640-802 Exam today.
  • JustFredJustFred Member Posts: 678 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Beautiful. Well done.
    [h=2]"After a time, you may find that having is not so pleasing a thing, after all, as wanting. It is not logical, but it is often true." Spock[/h]
  • n4pst3rn4pst3r Member Posts: 15 ■□□□□□□□□□

    Me too I work 40+ hours a week, as level 1 support. Only a better career and more opportunities drives me !

    Can't wait for the day when I land my dream job !
    Certification Goals 2017
    ITILv3 2011-F
  • stunnedsoupstunnedsoup Member Posts: 120
    For me, it's setting goals (like a lot of people have mentioned). Being the first in my company to achieve certs and learn new material and apply it to the work environment. Also, being the first in my family to advance myself. I want to push myself, learn, retain, teach, and not look back. It never comes easy. Working 40-50hrs a week, studying at the Uni part-time, and raising two kids, and traveling is no joke. Many here can attest to this!

    Best wishes to all! Thanks for working hard everyone!
    Cisco: CCENT COLOR=#ff0000]&#10004;[/COLOR CCNA COLOR=#ff0000]&#10004;[/COLOR || MCSE: 70-410 COLOR=#ff0000]&#10004;[/COLOR 70-411 [ ] 74-409 COLOR=#ff0000]&#10004;[/COLOR 70-534 [ ] || VMWare: VCP [ ]
  • Jon_CiscoJon_Cisco Member Posts: 1,771 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I started to answer this several times but always got pulled away!

    I started learning networking for the possibility of a career change. It is important to understand nothing last forever in today's economy. I want to be able to demonstrate both knowledge and commitment to learning when I talk to future employers. I took the four NetAcad classes at my local community college and of the 20 students I believe only two of us completed the certification.

    The motivation will come from believing it is worth it. To do that you need to understand why you want it to being with. If it is important to you then you have a better chance of following through with it.

    Good Luck
  • mikeybinecmikeybinec CCNA 200-120 Member Posts: 484 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I got the degrees and then the CCNA so I could make a career change from Aviation support to something I think is cool.. I cant get a f'in job so it''s looking like a waste. studying BASH and Python, to see if this will help
    Cisco NetAcad Cuyamaca College
    A.S. LAN Management 2010 Grossmont College
    B.S. I.T. Management 2013 National University
Sign In or Register to comment.