Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The death of Procrastination, the birth of Sleep and the resuscitation of Memory!

Guilty of Procrastinating? Don't think sleep is that important? Want to continue memorizing information regardless of age? There is a class from Coursera.org called Learning how to Learn: Powerful Mental Tools to help you master tougher subjects by Prof. Barbara Oakley from the University of California in San Diego, that teaches people how the brain works when it comes to learning.

Procrastination is one of the main things that put a stop on the activity that was in mind. A lot of people develop a feeling of discontent when we focus on the product instead of the process. Realizing that there are 20 math equations to do instead of just doing math problems for a certain time is where the mistake is made. The Pomodoro Technique which consist of focusing for 25 minutes on a certain activity helps us built a positive habit in which we are training the brain to focus on the process of sitting down and doing the math problems. Set a timer for 25 minutes with no distractions and give it all you got. When we look at the 20 math problems that need to be completed we start developing a negative feeling, then we distract ourselves with something else that causes a temporarily happiness but the work itself is still there. After the 25 minutes, taking a break is encourage in order to allow the diffused memory do the work. Go for a walk or take a nap. Washing dishes is my to go relaxing thing to do.  After you have allowed to relax the brain you can choose to do more in the afternoon or write it on daily planner for the next day and check off the process of sitting down and focusing on the process. When we do it one day at a time its easier for the brain to create the memory.

I only sleep 6 hours a night and feel fantastic! Why do i need sleep? Coffee is my solution to the problem. This way of thinking sets us up for not learning, memorizing nor understanding the concept of what we are trying to learn. Sleep allows for the toxins in the brain to flush out.Brains sweep themselves clean of toxins during sleep. is an interesting article that explains how a waste product (beta amyloid) is flushed out during sleep. Its a sticky plaque associated with Alzheimer's disease. The following article: Sleep on it: Sleep consolidates memory of new motor task, according to Dr. Mahowald sleep deprivation impairs performance and learning. The brain does not rest during sleep, it consolidates memories and performs memory related functions. Getting a good night sleep is essential to creating memories and learning.

I graduated from college back in 2003. It has been 11 years since I stepped into a classroom. I mentioned to my sister that i am debating about going back to college to pursue a masters degree. She informs me of Coursera, a website that provides free online classes.The fear of being too old and lack of confidence hold me back from entering the college field. Being a stay at home mom for the past 5 years had also disconnected the bridges of professional contact i once had. So now I am "old", not tech savvy and  I want to get a masters!? What am i thinking? 

Well, guess what! According to Prof. Oakley, age has no imitations when creating new memories. Memory has two main systems: Long term memory which is like a storage warehouse. It takes practice and repetition for it to be formed. Then there is working memory which is like a blackboard that fades. Only four new things can be learned at a time. When we memorize, internalization of materials occur. Visual Memory learning involves the use of flash cards. Handwriting outlines, not typing, allows for the encoding at the neuromemory structure for learning to occur. Creating a visual image representing what you want to learn allows for the images to connect to the right hemisphere of the brain in which the concept will be retained much easier.

So guess what I will be doing to in the next couple of days to prepare myself for the GRE? I will write in my daily planner and set a time to focus on math. Then after the 25 minutes I will play games with my daughter or go rake some leaves. I have been going to sleep around 9:30 vs 11:00 pm and it has helped my energy levels in the morning already. I will create flash cards to aid in memorizing of formulas. Practicing everyday with no interruptions is the main thing i need to work on. I have a 3 and 5 year old and avoiding no distractions is nearly impossible. For now am really excited and motivate to continue learning. 

References:
Sleep on it: Sleep consolidates Memory of New Motor task.
Brains sweep themselves clean of toxins during sleep.
Learning How to learn: Powerful mental tools to help you master tough subjects.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Day 5 of Positive things in my life

Here is day 5. I can't believe tomorrow is Friday already!

1. We are seeing a marriage counselor and it has been the most amazing experience. We were currently going through a rough patch and now we are growing stronger each day. I am happier and in a better mood then what i was 3 months ago.  Its the third best thing that has happened in my life.

2. It was a playing games and just enjoying the time with my 3 yr old. we colored, cut, used stickers, played candy land, play dou, stamps, Lincoln logs and painted. Before i would fret about feeling like i was wasting my time and what not because i was home. I don't feel like that anymore. I appreciate the time and the special one on one bond that i have with my daughter. I am started to enjoy the now more so then anything.

3. We donated some candy to the school pto. They are having a parade on Saturday so it was nice to feel like we were doing something good for an organization. Gringomex is now in kindergarten and teaching him to help out the school is a great learning experience.

God Bless,
Jeanette

Day 4 of Positive Things in my life

 Due to time I totally forgot to log in my day 4. Here it goes:

1. We cleaned the house. The bathroom smells nice and clean thanks to Mr. Clean. All trash was emptied, swept, mopped and toys were picked up. It was nice to see the house in order for a change.

2. I tried a new recipe from Betty Crocker that involved peanut butter on ribs instead of the typical bbq sauce. It was different and it was really good. Placing the ribs in the crock pot made them nice and soft and then i grilled them once they were done to get that nice grilling flavor. I also made apple crips for dessert. I enjoy spending quality time with my 3 yr old daughter.

3. I got on the scale and am happy to have lost 2 pounds. I started doing P90X3 and have seem some muscle toning already. Will keep you posted on that later on.

Overall it was a good day! There were some moments when my 3 yr old had a tantrum and what not but we overcame it.

God Bless,
Jeanette

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Day 3 of positive things

I was sitting during lunch thinking about the positive things that had already happened in my day.

1. I got a chance to go to gringomex's kindergarten class and volunteer for an hour. There is the social connection of the day. I thrive on social communication and having a sense of accomplishment. It was nice to see all the learning centers and help out the teacher. I also had a chance to see my son during the day.

2. I took gringamex to her nursery school orientation. Did more social connecting with the teacher and met new parents. It was nice to see that she goes with the flow and loves to have that connection with other children.

3. I didn't have to make dinner. My husband made dinner tonight so that was really good. I was glad to get a break from the stove.

And tomorrow is Wednesday! The first of October. So far Sept 2014 was great. Adjusting to school wasnt as bad as i thought it would be. Gringomex is in boy scouts. We did apple picking and decorated the house for fall. And yes there have been some arguments between me and my husband along with tears however its a live and learn experience.

God Bless,
Jeanette

Monday, September 29, 2014

Three Good things that Happened. Day2

I am having  a bit of a hard time finding three good things that happened. Here they go:

1. It was nice and sunny outside. I love it when its 70 degrees outdoors. I get to open the windows and let some fresh air in the house.

2. I did some indoor Halloween decorating. I placed bats and ghost on the wall. I put pumkins and leaves falling on the door. I did some leave rubbing on paper with gringamex. We also did some apple activities with the stamps. I enjoyed the time with her.

3.  I put a wash on the laundry and my husbands grandmother was soo kind to fold my clothes. I really appreciate the time she took on folding my clothes. I didn't have to worry about folding the clothes which allowed me to enjoy some time to myself tonite. Its the little things that make me happy.

I guess overall it was a good day!

Jeanette

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Three Positive Things

Am taking a course on The Science of happiness on EdX.com and one of the assignments is to write three positive things that happened in my day and reflect on it. I will be doing it for 7 days so here it goes!

Day One
1. We went apple picking and made apple sauce. The best part is that we only paid $2.00 for a bag load of them. They also were selling little pumpkins for the kids to paint for .50c. The weather was beautiful. We also made apple fritters with the leftover apples!

2. We did grocery shopping for two weeks. I dont have to worry about going into town to grocery shop. The best deal was buying big, i mean huge pumpkins for $2.49. Can't beat that price! We also found some ghost and pumpkin decorations for out doors.

3. We cleaned the garage. I finally got rid of bags to be donated to Clusters 13 which is a non profit donation center in town. I couldnt believe the space after cleaning up. My son is 5 and i had bags of clothes that he wore when he was only 18 months old!

God Bless,
Jeanette

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Believing in myself with The Pampered Chef.

cheesecakepchef

I was signed up to sell The Pampered Chef cooking items and I didn’t think I was going to last. My husband signed me up because I wanted half of the products that came in the kit. I was nervous, scared and panicky at first. I was in deep shock to know that my husband had signed me up to do this. Its been four years since I left the house all by myself. I don’t like to drive. I haven’t spoken in in front of people in years. I cant..I cant..I cant…All the negatives was bombarding my head.  When I had my first person sign up to do a show I was nervous. I remember crying that night because I was mortified of getting in the car and standing in front of people. They were family relatives and all I could think of was that people where going to think that what I did was a joke. I didn’t believe in it..yet

I did my first show and I survived. then came second and third and so on. I am starting to feel a bit more comfortable and still learning new things every single day. I am thankful to be part of a wonderful team. I can count on my Director and Advance Director to guide me. I am a scary cat when doing new things. Always afraid of asking and the “what if I fail”. I am not alone. Everyone has their moments in life and when we let those fears control us we will never move forward. I, for one am learning to overcome my fear of driving to an unknown place. The more I do it the more comfortable I will be.

The best way to overcome any fear is to just do it! You never know where it will take you. For now I earn free products, flexible schedule and of course I get paid which means its my fun money. How cool is that!

Jeanette

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