WTH? I can't concentrate to read IT books/manuals?
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Thread: WTH? I can't concentrate to read IT books/manuals?

  1. #1
    Senior Member genXer's Avatar
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    WTH? I can't concentrate to read IT books/manuals?

    People - I am having a crisis - don't know if any of you ever get this - I hope you don't. I cannot keep my concentration when reading IT stuff lately. When trying to learn about anything new in security - I find my mind wandering, even getting bored!?! What is going on here? I love this stuff, have tons yet to learn - excited at that prospect - but when trying to read about it I start to zone out after about 10 minutes. Has anyone else experienced this?!?

    Any advice or wisdom on how to combat this feeling? Again - I love this field and do not want to give it up - meebe the warranty on my brain is ran out.

    /whine
    \"We\'re the middle children of history.... no purpose or place. We have no Great War, no Great Depression. Our great war is a spiritual war. Our great depression is our lives. We\'ve all been raised by television to believe that one day we\'ll all be millionaires and movie gods and rock stars -- but we won\'t. And we\'re learning slowly that fact. And we\'re very, very pissed off.\" - Tyler (Brad Pitt) Fight Club.

  2. #2
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    Look at yourself critically. Examine your diet, your state of mind and your health. If your diet is poor, you may want to think about adding some balance with vitamins or herbs (I use Ginko and Vitamin Water (focus) to help boost the brain functions).

    If your relationships are a problem, you will have trouble concentrating. Take care of business.

    If your health is good, great. If not, deal with that first.

    Getting older sucks, but your brain has an almost infinite capacity and if you keep it lubricated and active, there is no reason for it to start misfiring at your tender age. Keep the support system healthy and take care of business.


  3. #3
    AOs Resident Troll
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    I have experienced this myself...

    Now sometimes when I am reading about new things..my mind wanders...and I allow it..it opens up new ideas...and ways at looking at the topic....which I do not think is bad...

    everyone learns differently...so what worked for me...might not neccessarlly work for you.

    When I am having this problem....and my mind wanders WAY off topic.....

    I take notes...helps me focus on the topic...and force my mind to comprehend and pay attention.....also allows me to add my ideas to the topic...some reference for my mind to remember the original idea...

    Not sure why it happens in the first place...maybe something is bothering you????

    MLF
    Edit

    I totally agree with rapier57

    Healthy body..healthy mind

    I work out when I need ti clear my head....or have something that bothers me...get the blood flowing to the brain...




    How people treat you is their karma- how you react is yours-Wayne Dyer

  4. #4
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    Hey Hey,

    I don't know what you're reading... but one of the series of textbooks we had to read for school was the Cisco Press books... First CCNA Study Guides and then the CCNP books... Let me tell you.. nothing could be worse... It's like torture to try and get through....

    Our solution... was two-fold...

    First... never read the first time.. especially if it's overly technical.. your mind won't deal with it... it'll wander.... if you skim the first time through you'll get the basics of the concept... then when you start reading it.. it won't be new material to your mind... it'll be something you're familiar with... the second time through... read it indepth.. as soon as your mind wanders.. take a break.. do something completely unrelated.. if this was our study session.... we'd talk about chicks, cars, alcohol... then we'd go back to the IT world until we wandered again...
    Now read it a third time and take notes... this forces you to fully concentrate as MLF has mentioned.... Then read your notes and explain it to someone else.. or write a tutorial for the site ....

    Letting your mind wander can be natural... you just need your own way to deal with it's jaunts into randomness... Besides with above method.. you'll be laughing at the end when you realize how easy it was.. then you can sit down and get intense, think stuff through.. reevaluate it.. and question it... because you have a solid understanding of the material.. it becomes a game at that point.

    Peace,
    HT
    IT Blog: .:Computer Defense:.
    PnCHd (Pronounced Pinched): Acronym - Point 'n Click Hacked. As in: "That website was pinched" or "The skiddie pinched my computer because I forgot to patch".

  5. #5
    AO's Mr Grumpy
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    Re: WTH? I can't concentrate to read IT books/manuals?

    Originally posted here by genXer
    People - I am having a crisis - don't know if any of you ever get this - I hope you don't. I cannot keep my concentration when reading IT stuff lately. When trying to learn about anything new in security - I find my mind wandering, even getting bored!?! What is going on here? I love this stuff, have tons yet to learn - excited at that prospect - but when trying to read about it I start to zone out after about 10 minutes. Has anyone else experienced this?!?

    Any advice or wisdom on how to combat this feeling? Again - I love this field and do not want to give it up - meebe the warranty on my brain is ran out.

    /whine
    What you are feeling is a normal part of the learning process, studying is not easy, I should know , having recently graduated, my ambition was always to get a degree, but I could probably be your father / grandfather. I feel it's all about how motivated and determined you are to achieve your goal. Yes, we get pissed off, get bored, go off at a tangent somewhere, feel you're losing out , while all you friends are having a great time , while you are going off your head brainbashing , wondering if it is all worthwhile. My answer would be a big YES. What do you want to achieve? Are you prepared for a few sacrifices? That's life. All the advice from other posts is very good and relevant. I can certainly relate to HT and Cisco. I personally found it was good to to lay the computer stuff down for a while do or read something completely different and then come back refreshed. good Luck
    Computer says no
    (Carol Beer)

  6. #6
    AFLAAACKKK!!
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    You know what, I am having the same problem... But I didn't bring it up because I thought it was just me. I have been smoking weed for a while now, I have been wanting to quit but couldn't really do it. Then I tried reading my IT books to refresh my memory, and to my surprise, no matter how hard I tried, it was extremely hard grasping the information and keeping focused. I got pissed off and thought I was getting dumber or something. This motivated me to be serious about quitting smoking.

    Anyway, your guys' tips are very appreciated.
    I am the uber duck!!1
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  7. #7
    Senior Member Deeboe's Avatar
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    GenXer - My suggestion would be to ween yourself back into learning. Start with books designed to keep you interested.

    When I want to learn something, but don't want to jump right into the techical nonsense, I tend to start with more narrative books. (Books that tell how things work in a story context.) Then, once you make it through that, figure out which part of that book was the most interesting to you and move into the more techincal stuff. (Choose your level to head into based on your own feelings.)

    The best way to find the books that you feel will fit best, is just to go to Barne's & Nobles (or the library), grab a stack of books, and skim through them looking for the best possible option for you!

    Also, it helps to be able to have hands-on activities included in your studies.

    Hope that helps,
    -Deeboe
    If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.
    - Sun Tzu, The Art of War

    http://tazforum.**********.com/

  8. #8
    Senior Member genXer's Avatar
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    Smile

    Thank you all for the great advice! I am still reviewing the wisdom offered and will be taking action asap.

    I have started working out more and got back into the martial arts - before I posted - to unlock the mind and stress relief - I am hopeful it will help.

    Also - I think the leisure reading will help - I need to do that more.

    Although I am not accomplished, I have achieved the educational goals I set for myself when I was but a young genXer. I think I need to reevaluate those goals now and move forward. I thought seeking certification or another degree would focus me - but now I am not so sure. I think also the realization that the more "learned" and experienced, I become, the less I really know - and at times that could distract me. That and the reality of finding out "I am not all that and a bag of po-tato chips..." is funny to me now, but I think it also distracts at times.

    I wonder if our work at times sacrifices our attention span? I have no data on this - just a theory is all.

    It could also be that we are expecting our third child - wasn't planned and I am distracted by that and thinking and hoping my much-better-half keeps healthy. But I have gone through this before - the second time while working on my Masters and thrived.

    For my kids I have to remember from the military and "Heartbreak Ridge":

    1. Lead by example
    2. Adapt and overcome
    3. "BE-KNOW-DO": http://www.per.hqusareur.army.mil/cpd/Leader_Development/principles.htm

    Thanks again all - I greatly appreciate the time and effort you took to respond - this will definitely help me, and hopefully others, and I will definitely revisit this thread in the future for positive reinforcement.

    The Duck - best of luck to you - we will overcome!
    \"We\'re the middle children of history.... no purpose or place. We have no Great War, no Great Depression. Our great war is a spiritual war. Our great depression is our lives. We\'ve all been raised by television to believe that one day we\'ll all be millionaires and movie gods and rock stars -- but we won\'t. And we\'re learning slowly that fact. And we\'re very, very pissed off.\" - Tyler (Brad Pitt) Fight Club.

  9. #9
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    Just a little something extra. Something that I found to be very helpful and stimulating. Back when I was getting burned out in technology and moved to a teaching position in a small college, I decided to take some art classes. I took drum making and other Native American arts. This was a very enriching experience and provides me with a valuable creative outlet.

    Keep this in mind. Find a creative hobby or activity that requires you focus on something from a different perspective for some period of time a few days a week. This helps provide a balance with the hard, technical, logical stuff we deal with every day.

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