It’s crunch time again and you want to pass all your classes. Here’s how:
- Be honest with yourself and others. Own it. Excuses.
- Print your grades (the pages WITH the details)
- Email your teachers with honesty and integrity
- Go to office hours
- Overhaul your materials
- Update your planner
- Make a SANE master plan
- Get accountability
- Start (sss, timers, plans)
- Start again
- Umm, now start again
- Repeat each weekend
- Be proactive with finals, projects, readings and papers
Do it NOW!
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🙏 Thanks! — Seth
Hey students. Listen, listen, listen, listen. Look, if you want to get your F’s to A’s, if you want to raise your grades, if you want to finish the semester on a strong note, if you’re a middle school or a high school or a college student and you got a bunch of F’s, listen. Today is November 12th, and you got a bunch of F’s and you want to get A’s, chances are you’re not going to get A’s. But you can get these D’s or C’s or B’s and sometimes you actually can pull it off and get it A’s. So I’m going to tell you 13 things to do to turn it around right now, the end of the semester is right around the corner. Okay. Basically, it’s November in a couple of weeks. You have Thanksgiving break, so you’re not even going to be in school, and in two weeks in December you’re done with the semester and it’s over. What tends to happen is that a lot of students who struggle with Executive Function things, they get very unrealistic like, “Oh I got this, I’ll figure it out,” and they procrastinate, procrastinate, procrastinate. The next thing, you know, you got a few F’s, you have to retake classes, you have to do something annoying because you put yourself in a position where you got F’s and you think that you’re going to be able to pull it off but you’re not actually taking the actions. So if you are one of those people and you’re being honest with yourself and you’re like, “You know what, I really do kind of struggle with this stuff. I really am kind of disorganized. I forget stuff. I lie to my parents. I lie to myself. You know, I just really don’t put a lot of time into studying and it’s really not working,” and if you actually want to change that, listen to this video. I’m going to tell you 13 things. Here we go right now.
Number 1: Be honest with yourself. Just be honest with yourself and own it. It’s okay. Stop making excuses. Just say to your parents, “Hey guys. Guess what? I’m failing four classes,” or whatever the case, is just like “I’m sorry, but I’m working on it and I need some help and I know that I pushed you away and I tell you to leave me alone and trust me. I’ve got this and stuff, but I don’t. I need help. So, can you help me like this? Can you help me like that? Can you hold me accountable,” whatever. So the number one step is to be honest with yourself. Look, there’s no shame in this. Stop lying to yourself. What we do is we get stressed out and we do not like being stressed out. So what happens is we become what’s called avoidant. If you’re a middle school, high school, or college student who’s getting all these bad grades, what happens is that you tend to become avoidant, which means that when the stress starts coming most of you push it away. You say “I don’t even think about it. I’m going to procrastinate I’ll get to it later. Let’s go play some more video games. Let’s go hang out with my friends. Let’s go this that do this that or the other, but let’s not address the problem. I’ll get to it later.” Okay. So be honest with yourself. When your parents are bugging you and they’re like, “Why didn’t you do this? And when are you going to do that?” and just be honest with them. You can say, “I don’t know,” or you can say, “Well I intend to do it later today, but I may not because,” whatever it is doesn’t matter, just be honest with yourself and with them. Don’t get defensive. Don’t be like, “oh leave me alone.” Be like, “you’re right. You’re right. Okay, I’m working on it.” Maybe you can let your parents help you and stuff like that. So number one, be honest about the situation.
Number 2: Now what I want you to do is go to your computer, open up your grade program, go to the part of the grade program where it shows the details of the class. I don’t care about the grade in your class. I don’t care if you have a 47%, a 67%, or 99%. Go to the pages that show the details of the classes that show each individual assignment. Click print, print it up. And then I want you to take your handy-dandy highlighter and highlight all the things that you want to address. Usually, they’re missings, incompletes, or scores that are really low where you’re able to do corrections or do something to raise the score. I don’t care about anything else. Highlight only the things that may possibly be actionable items. Number two, print your grades and start to deal with those.
Number 3: Email your teachers with honesty and integrity. What that means is you write a very short email, don’t get overwhelmed because I’m telling you to do this. Don’t be like, “oh I don’t feel like writing an email,” just write the stupid email. Okay, trust me, please. I’ve done this a lot with a lot of students because it works. A little short email to your teacher: “Hey, Miss Smith. What’s up? I hope you having a good weekend. Look, I’m failing your class and I need some help, do any suggestions for me?” Boom. Click send. The reason you want to email your teachers, there are a few reasons and a few benefits, and all of who are watching this video right now are probably resistant like, “Oh, I don’t need to email them. I’m going to go see him tomorrow and office hours. I’ll see him Thursday. I’ll talk to them, I promise I’m going to talk to him. I’ll go to them at the beginning of class, I’ll go to them at the end of the class,” you know what, you’re lying to yourself. Why am I saying that and I don’t even know you? Because I work with hundreds of students that say the same thing, and the fact is that when they don’t create a system for holding themselves accountable, they forget but they don’t mean to forget. They fully intend to go see the teacher but they forget. So you want to hold yourself accountable, you want to hold yourself to a higher standard. You want to make sure you cover your bases and get your butt in to see that teacher. So you’re going to say “Hey, what’s up. I’m failing class and need a little bit of help. Can you give me any suggestions,” and you want to ask, “Can I come into office hours?” and you want to be specific, “Can I come see you tomorrow at 3 pm for a couple of minutes and make a plan,” or whatever. Ask them for something specific, okay. Next, after you email them with honesty and integrity and you’re just like honest with them and you’re like, “This where I’m at. Sorry, but I need help,” and don’t be ashamed of it.
Number 4: After you email them, you do want to now go in to see them during office hours or the beginning class or the end of class, or whatever. You want to be present in-person with them. Writing that email and going to see them shows them through your actions, not your intentions, but through your actions that you care about your grade. When you go to them and you quote ‘ask for help,’ and you are humble and you go with integrity and you’re honest teachers respond positively. Of course, I know a lot of you were here saying, “Yeah, but you don’t understand! My teacher hates me,” or whatever. You know what, I don’t care if you feel that way or not. Honestly just go in and do it anyway because this is not about your teacher. This is about you and your life and your results. I don’t want you to be repeating a class. I don’t want you to be the one dealing with the consequences of the F. The teacher goes on with their life, they’re not getting the F. So this is about you, even if you feel like they don’t like you or they won’t listen to you, or whatever. Just trust me and do it. Anyway, what’s the worst that can happen? So you’ve done the first steps.
Number 5: Now, you’re going to overhaul your materials. I want you to take every single thing that has to do with school, put it on the middle of the floor in the living room, spread it all out, and go through it. Every paper, every book, every sticky note, every gum wrapper, every everything. Bring everything over from your locker or your desk, bring everything from your desk in your bedroom. Put it all out in one place and make sense of it. Ask your parents or brother or sister or friend or a relative or somebody to hang out with you for a little bit and make sense of it. Get someone who’s really organized because they’re good at that stuff. Okay, and what you want to do if you want to start making piles. One pile is probably your favorite pile, it’s the recycle pile. Get a pile of everything you never need to look at again. Then, make a pile for things that need to be addressed and things that need to be dealt with. Make a pile for things that you need to put back in the folders, and so on and so forth, just get everything organized. So that’s the next thing is to overhaul everything. Now when you overhaul everything, the most important aspect of your overhauling all your papers and stuff is to make a pile of the things that must be dealt with that are called ‘urgent.’ Your most urgent items should be in a very accessible, visible place. So the things that are urgent, put them in an inbox put them in your planner on the front page your planner, put them in a queue folder if you watch my queue folder videos, whatever it is. Okay, I want you to get the most urgent things in your face so that you have to see them and you have to deal with them.
Number 6: Next, update your planner thoroughly. I like to get students rip out every page from the past, okay. Today is November 12th, get rid of everything from the earlier in the school year. Get rid of all of it. Your planner will become a lot lighter in a lot more manageable. And for this week, you only have to worry about through December 15th, roughly for all of you. Write every detail you can that you need to do this week. Get everything in that planner. Look at your grade sheets, the ones that you just printed. Write those things in your planner when you’re going to do them, write reminders on when to turn them in, make sticky notes, I don’t care what you do, but get details in your planner. Get very granular. Very very very very very detailed with your planner, ask an organized person to help you get the things into your planner. Be humble and honest about it. I know you’re going to resist and be like, “I don’t feel like it. I’ll do it tomorrow. I’ll do it Wednesday blah blah.” Look just do it. Today, Sunday, spend a couple of hours tonight. Tell your friends not to bug you. Turn off your technology, any distractions, put the dog outside, whatever. You need to do this to make your life easier. Okay, so get started tonight.
Number 7: Make a sane master plan. The master plan is different than the planner. The master plan is kind of like where you’re going to take something like this (a sheet of lined paper), and just list out all of the things that need to be done. And then you’re going to put a number by them in the order that you want to do them. So maybe number one is down here, and number two is right here, number three here, and number four up here. You want to get everything on one master plan and then start crossing it out as you finish them. Then you need to decide what order you’re going to do the things in the master plan. What I usually say to people is, ‘do you want to start with the easiest first, the hardest first, the shortest first, the longest first, or the most important first,’ and then you can kind of decide your style. People have different styles and you know, your parents might say, “Oh you should do the most important first,” well that might not be your style, or that might be your style. Or your parents might say they always used to do the easiest first because it’ll get the ball rolling. Your friends might say, oh you should do the hardest first. People have different opinions. Look for your style and do what works for you, but you do want to have some coating for the biggest priorities for sure. So, make your master plan that is sane. So meaning, you’re not going to do everything on the master plan also, you need to know this. You need to be honest with yourself. Let’s say if you have 30 assignments that you need to get turned in before the end of the semester. If you do 10, that might be a success. If you do 23, that might be a success. It’s not likely because I would work with students all the time, it’s not likely that you’re actually going to do all of them. So just be careful how you prioritize and do what you need to do so that you’re passing. Don’t worry about the beginning of the video when I was talking about F’s to A’s. Don’t worry about the A’s, just worried about getting yourself out of the hole. You got to be realistic with yourself at this point.
Number 8: Get accountability. That means to get a friend or family member or a parent, get somebody to hold you accountable. In other words, if you say, “I will do these three assignments today,” you tell somebody and you say, “if I don’t do these three assignments today, I’m going to give you a hundred bucks.” No, you don’t have to do any of that. But you do want to say “Hey, will you help me stay accountable. I’m making a commitment that I’m going to do these three things today. Will you check on me and see that?” You’re asking for support. That’s what accountability is. Say to your parents, “look I’m going to finish these homework assignments by 5 pm. Will you help make sure I do that and help me stay accountable?” Why do you want accountability? Because we often can’t depend on ourselves to hold ourselves accountable, so we ask others to help us with that. So get someone to help us be accountable for that. I’m going to help you be kind of bowl anybody.
Number 9: Get started on the master plan. Now in order to start on your master plan, you have to have a concrete idea of what you’re going to do. If you have an abstract idea of what you’re going to do, you’re stressed out, you’re going to be avoidant, and you’re going to procrastinate. Give a concrete idea of what you’re going to do, meaning if you have a good plan and if you use a digital timer to help you get started are two things that help make it concrete and help you get started. So our next thing is to get started. Getting started is the hardest part. That’s half the battle. That’s 90% of the battle is just getting started. Now, you also have to have in order to get started is a SSS, a sacred study space, a good place to focus that is free of distraction and maximized for focus. If you don’t have a good place to study you better do that first thing. So you need a sacred study space, a great place to study and focus on your stuff that’s free of distractions. I recommend using timers and you need a concrete plan of what you’re going to do.
Number 10: Next thing, after number 10, after you start. The next thing to do is start again. People, start again. Why? Because you will get sidetracked. You will get distracted. You will forget what you were doing. You will daydream, you will go into la-la land. Well guess what, get started again.
Number 11: After you get started again, get started again because you’re going to get off track again. And I’m going to keep saying this. Get started again, get started again, get started again. Don’t imagine that you’re going to sit there for 3 hours and crank out 5 Math assignments. It’s not going to happen. It never happens. Okay, be honest with yourself. Go back to number one. Be honest with yourself. So not if, but when, you get sidetracked and distracted and procrastinate-y, start again. Then start again. Then start again. What happens is a lot of people don’t start again, and then they go further and further and further behind.
Number 12: Repeat this exact process next weekend and the next weekend and the next weekend. Repeat the process every weekend. Go through this video, watch it again, hit pause every time I tell you to do something and do it and go through it every weekend. If you do this, you will be passing your classes, I guarantee it.
Step 13: The final step. Be proactive with what’s coming on in the last week of school. The last week before winter break, you’re going to have exams, papers, projects, and reading assignments that must be done. Those are four things. You do not want to wait until the night before to study for your finals, to do massive reading assignments, to finish your projects, or to write papers. So a lot of people, myself included, really struggled with being proactive and they wait until the last minute and then they dig a huge hole for themselves. And one of two things happens, either they who they work really hard and they pull it off, and sometimes even pulled off and do well. Most of the time they pull it off and get a C or D or whatever, and it’s just not high-quality work and it doesn’t represent what you’re capable of and you lost the opportunity to learn something and to grow from it, or they avoid it altogether. The pressure is too high. They say, “I’ll do it. I’ll do it. I promise I’ll do it. I promise I’ll do it.” They avoid avoid avoid avoid and all of a sudden, the last day of the semester comes, those things weren’t done and end up failing. So those are the two things that happen. You want to be proactive, meaning when you get these assignments with these study guides or these rubrics or whatever, you want to get started on it early. Okay, and get it in your planner.
So those are 13 things going to go over those real quick.
- Be honest with yourselves and with others. Get rid of the excuses, own it. Say, “Hey, here’s where I’m at. I’m struggling and need some help. Honestly, this is where I’m at.”
- Print your grades.
- Email your teachers with honesty and integrity.
- Go to their office hours and talk to the human being and say, “Hey, I need help. I want to pass your class.”
- Overhaul your materials. Your backpacks, your paper, your folders and all that.
- Update your planner completely.
- Make a sane master plan with all the details, knowing that you’re not going to get through all of them, but put them all there anyway and just organize them in such a way that it’s saying that you’re prioritizing them.
- Get accountability from somebody.
- Get started
- Start again.
- Start again.
- Repeat this process each weekend.
- When the last week comes, don’t get started on your things then. Be proactive for the papers, projects, exams, and reading assignments that come up. On the last week be proactive about them and start them early.
That’s it. Now, do it. You can re-watch this video. You can click pause and get these steps done, but get started now. Do this. I am telling you this, so I work with this to all these different students, and I’m telling you this because this is your life. What you do here today in your life is going to help set you up for a great future, or a struggling future. And I want, your parents want, your teachers want, people who really care about you want, your real friends want for you to have a fantastic future, not a mediocre future. Not an okay future. Not an okay life. We want you to have choices and freedom, your parents when you have a better life than they had. Even if they make mistake their human, blah blah blah. Don’t worry about it. We want you to be happy, that’s the point of all this. Education should be providing you with this, of course, there are problems with it, but I want you to finish the semester strong. So let’s do this now. Good luck to you. If you like this video share it with a friend right now. clicks Send it off to someone that you care about, a friend of yours who could use this if you know anybody who could benefit from it, but either way, go get started, do it. Do it. Go do this, get started, do it now. Good luck to you. Have a great November and December so you can set yourself up for an incredible winter break. I’ll see you soon.
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