I don’t believe in the “magic” of coffee.
That isn’t to say that I awake each morning with the windows open, the birds chirping, and my voice echoing their tune, but I do not need caffeine to jump start my day. I believe it’s your mindset that gets you going. If you think you’re going to have a bad day, chances are you will only focus on the negative circumstances that happen upon you.
With that said, being an optimist has its advantages. Pursuing goals with your eyes on the outcomes and knowing you have the power to reach them propels you so much farther than you would think. As a singer, I am constantly wanting and needing to improve my repertoire. I am currently transitioning from singing mezzo to soprano, and let me tell you, I certainly have to remind myself that singing a piece in a higher tessitura than I am use to is a feat I must overcome. Constant repetition and practice is what every musician needs; however, I have learned that giving myself breaks and time to delve into something completely different is beneficial to my sanity and ability to learn.
When it comes to academics, I apply the same tactics. Reviewing one course to another is the best way for my mind to stay engaged. As mentioned in the excerpt from What the Best College Students Do by Ken Bain, testing yourself is a more effective learning technique than simply reviewing. Do I really know this formula or am I just prone to mindlessly copy all its numbers and variables? Have I memorized these lyrics and also its meaning in the context of this piece? I have found that studying the subject in which I have the most difficulty in is a much better use of my time than reviewing material that comes easy.
Needless to stay, I am an ever-growing student. I may find study and rehearsal techniques that I now use may not be sufficient in the coming weeks. Moreover, I must not get discouraged when something goes awry. Things happen and things change. Starting college is a major transition, both in my environment and learning, and with a positive outlook, I cannot wait to see all that I can accomplish.
Note: The image used was found through Google Images.