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Habitica, ADD and Studying

More than a year since I first discovered Habitica (formerly HabitRPG) I'm still using it.  As I've discussed in previous posts, it's a gamification site.  You set yourself daily tasks or habits (to do, or not do, whenever) and tick them off.  Each tick gives your little character more experience, gold, and items for collecting pets.  If you're on a quest then your actions will also damage the enemy.

Since September I've been attending college, completing an access course with the goal of attending university from 2016.  I've found Habitica quite invaluable in managing my ADD and completing tasks.

Add is essentially a lack of executive memory; it's hard to organise information.  There's also an element of time-blindness; it's harder to evaluate longer tasks and to motivate oneself to complete them in good time.

In class, I add a sticky note to every paragraph or info-point in my notes. During class, I don't make a point of reflecting on the information; I just write it down.

Later, I write up my notes and remove the stickies, which is one of my positive habits - remove the stickies ('Revision Tabs').  I get a tick for every single one that I get rid of.  This is also when I reflect on the information; I rephrase, rewrite and tie things together.  The act of doing this also helps me to remember it.

One of my dailies is to study.  I would struggle with a more holistic approach, like studying more when I need it or less when I don't.  I work better with an all or nothing thing, so I try to do an hour per day; it's fine to miss a day as long as it adds up to seven hours by Sunday (note: 52 uninterrupted minutes is an hour as far as this is concerned).  I track those hours as a 'to do'.  Every week I start a 'study' goal.  I add each hour I complete as a line on the checklist - each check works as a multiplier on the rewards I get when I tick the item off on Sunday.  You'll notice from the large image above that I also have a '5 minute study' goal.  I get to tick that once for every five minutes each day that I study over my hour.

The 'extra study' goal is there for things like reading Essential Biology for Dummies (literally - it's pretty good) or working from another text book on something that's relevant but isn't strictly for class.  I've done it that way so I'll still get credit for the hours I put in but I won't use it to avoid actually working on the things I should do - another symptom of ADD is a fear of starting tasks.

Speaking of a fear of starting tasks sometimes I go a little bit easy on myself; I'll use the first few minutes of a study session to make piles of my notes and to write a quick list of what to get through.  I can do this without turning off my audiobook or netflix right away.  It splits up the tasks.  Instead of the big thing of sitting down to study I start my timer, get myself organised, then turn off my entertainment and focus.  Once I've done it the first time it's all ready for the next set and it's easier to start.

I also use to-dos to note down my assignments and what I want to complete in my study sessions.  This needs some work; I only have a vague idea of what I want to complete.  I should probably overhaul this a little more.

Finally, I also use to-dos to manage my attendance.  The first half of the autumn term was six weeks long.  With three class days per week that's 18 days.  I put each of those days on a checklist and ticked off the entire to-do at the start of half-term for a big reward.  I'm doing the same thing with the second half of the autumn term - nine more days to go.

1 comment:

  1. من خلال مركز النور المتخصص فى مواد معادلة كلية الهندسة اجتازها الان بسهولة وتمتع باعلى نسبة خصم على كافة المواد فقط من خلال زيارة موقعنا الالكترونى