Saturday, March 31, 2012

Shigley Hauler Part III

So remember team Draco's lovely Shigley Hauler Parts I and II? Well, here are the results:
  • 1 book at 20 degrees: 7.5 seconds
  • 2 books at 30 degrees: 22.3 seconds
  • 4 books at 40 degrees: 52.5 seconds
  • 5 books at 60 degrees: 155.5 seconds
Can you believe that we hauled 5 books (22.5 pounds) up a 60 degree ramp with a motor (see below) that runs on two AA's?! neither...but we did!

Good Job, Team Draco! 


Friday, March 30, 2012

The Happiness Project

I feel like engineering is one of the best "philosophy" majors.  You constantly think about who we are as a society, where we are going as a society (think Soviet Nuclear crisis or the current energy situation), and where I am in the midst of it.  You can't deny your relevance to the current politico-economic situation...I've especially learned this from being in Washington DC.

Sure, it's fun to reflect on the meaning of life.  I'm in the process of reading "The Happiness Project". And nothing in this book is profounding (to be honest).  Basically, it's one person journey to happiness and fulfilling life's goal. From what I've gotten, the meaning of life is the journey to happiness.

This past week, I've been really struggling with where I want to go/what I want to do. What I've learned is the following: Don't deny what makes you happy. 

On the same note, watch the following video.


Thursday, March 29, 2012

Dealing with Test Anxiety

Hello. I haven't blogged in quite some time but I'm back now! I'm on spring break and enjoying every extra minute I'm in bed and not outside in the rain :)

Did you know that around 20% of students suffer from Test Anxiety? Crazy, right?

If you're one of this twenty percent you know how difficult it is to deal with. I thought I'd put together my list of tips for getting past the anxiety in order to be help you focus on your exams.

Note: These are in no particular order.

-Visualize: I know this sounds cheesy but it helps, imagine going into the exam and visualize every possibility. Imagine the best possible outcome, you come in, flip to the first page, look over all the problems, and mentally high five yourself because you know all the topics covered. Now what if you don't know the first question, go on and realize you know the next, etc. Do this every night until the exam. By the time the test comes around it's not as terrifying anymore because you've mentally taken it a good fifteen times already.

-BREATHE: One of the problems I deal with during tests is I freak myself out more than necessary and my heart beat goes way up. Focus on your breathing, youtube breathing exercises, and practice. Panicking is not going to help, focus on calming yourself and dealing with the task at hand.

-Sleep: Get enough sleep, eight hours is usually just wishful thinking the night before an exam but try to shoot for at least six. You need to focus on the completing the exam to the best of your abilities, not on trying not to drool on your exam. While an all-nighter may seem like a good idea at the time, it'll be no help the next morning when you can't recall the information from lack of sleep or fall asleep during an exam.

-Study thoroughly: Studying for college is not like studying for high school. It's not just rereading your notes and acing an exam. It's even harder with test anxiety in the way. Prepare for your exam WELL and in every way. If you feel you have done everything you possibly can to prepare for an exam then there won't be much doubt in your mind. Being prepared--> confidence.

-Music: I have two playlists for this. 1: My chill mix: music I can close my eyes and relax to. For me this is Ronald Jenkees, RJD2, The Album Leaf, Glorie, etc. All lyric-less instrumentals. This is for pre-test or when you just need to tune the world out. 2: a Happy Mix: This is your mood boosting mix for study breaks to convince yourself to keep going; upbeat music you can dance around to or songs that just make you smile.

-Good Memories: One of the things I like to do before an exam is get to class a little early and just wander campus. I usually end up visiting the building where I had my best exam experiences and best scores. It helps me feel like regardless of how freaked I am I can do well. I have felt this way before and still survived the exam and did well. Give it a shot, it’s surprisingly helpful.

-Avoid negative people: You know who I’m talking about; the worriers. Talking to someone panicking about an exam will just increase your anxiety and make you doubt how much you know. Just plug in headphones and try to tune everything out.

-After the exam: It’s over, there’s nothing else to be done at this time, don’t stress yourself out worrying about it. Go home, sleep, or go out to lunch or something. Treat this as a kind of reward for making it through the exam.

I hope these tips help. If you have any questions feel free to comment below. I’ll do a post later about great study music.


N. Riazi

Photo from Microsoft Office Online:|mt:2|