Remember how your parents used to always tell you to be careful when crossing the street, to eat your vegetables and do your homework before playing? Well, turns out that even though we often tuned out there was wisdom in their words.

You may be one of those individuals who are naturally smart and think they can slide by in just about any endeavor in life. Well, there’s no sliding by when it comes to getting the most from you online education. Success, learning and gaining that wonderful wisdom that your parents had is not a game of chance, but rather a journey that, if well thought out and pursued, can lead to great rewards.

Where there is smoke there’s fire they say. Similarly, where there are the warning signs of bad study habits, there is bound to be failure at some degree or another in education. Here are five tips off the top of my mind (distilled in the wisdom of my parents) that, if followed, can help you greatly in your online education.

One: Rabbits will get into the garden if you don’t protect it with a fence. What rabbits? What fence? What are you talking about man? Here’s what I’m talking about. Your study time must be as sacred as those heads of lettuce and carrots in the garden. Sure, now days you can go to the store to get these items and there are probably no rabbits where you live, but if you don’t set boundaries around your study time time-munching rabbits are sure to come and you can just grab the learning that will occur down at the local supermarket.

Two: That time in the morning when you wake up on the wrong side of the bed or late at night…that groggy feeling that feels like scrambled eggs, like your brain has gone through that “brain on drugs” commercial…well, that is not the best time to study. Studying while your mind is clear and alert will go a long ways to helping you retain what you’re learning. So, in addition to protecting your study time, protecting your alert time and saving it for study is essential.

Three: Ever played that game Chubby Bunny? It’s the one where you shove marshmallows in your mouth and say chubby bunny until you puke or can’t talk anymore. Well, cramming for tests, quizzes or assignments is like that. There comes a point where you just can’t do it anymore and win. Making sure your study time is regular and that you have time to chew up those marshmallows is very important.

Four: The online world can be a dangerous one. If for no other reason than the distractions it can bring. If you are having troubles keeping focused on the tasks you have to complete for your online coursework, make sure you come up with a system that will allow you to do so. Some use an egg timer and study for 30-45 minutes at a time. You can then take a small break and dive back in. You may also wish to see how you’re using you are using your time by using a tool like RescueTime. Having a set plan of attack can help immensely.

Five: Last but not least one of the things that students forget the most and matters most if you’re going to have a solid regimen of sitting down in front of a computer is exercise. A little exercise daily before your studies can invigorate the mind and get it ready to learn. Going for run or shooting some hoops afterwards is a good way to wind down and give your mind a rest, a chance to process and digest the things you just studied. Make sure to do this and your educational experience will be a much smoother one.

If you wish to succeed in your online education you’re gonna need to plan on it. Setting a time where you can be awake and alert, guarding it carefully from time stealers and working out regularly will give your mind a much better shot at retaining what you’re spending all your time trying to shove in there. You can do these things even if they haven’t been habits in the past. Desire is the seed that grows into the tree of destination. Good luck and study hard!

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