Day 6 of the 40-Day Challenge

In the name of Allah, most gracious and most merciful,

Thanks to Allah I have managed to succeed on the sixth day of the 40-day challenge. I was nearly highly engaged on average throughout my day. In this post, I will share the challenge I faced, how I overcame it, the key takeaways from it, and some useful information that I learned.

1. The challenge I faced and how I overcame it

Today’s challenge was different. I attended an online technical training session that was about 8 hours long including the breaks. I tried to engage as much as I can, and after the day ended I was happy, and I feel that I learned a lot thanks to Allah.

Here is how I was able to engage throughout the 8-hour training:

  • I already prepared part of the material that will be presented in advance by reading from a book, and practicing with my hands. This made me really engaged with the instructor.
  • I opened two tabs in the same window. One tab was on my screen’s right side that included the Webinar’s session and the screen shared by the instructor, and on my screen’s left side was a notion digital notebook that I used to take notes. I have a big screen that makes me see both the session, and my notes clearly. Investing in a tool that will help your learning is really a good investment. You are investing your money for more effective, and more enjoyable learning experience.
  • Although the instructor gave us the slides, I took screen shots from his screen of slides that I felt are important. Also, sometimes he was writing on the slides during the session so my screen shot will include these additional good illustrations. In addition to this, I wrote notes under the screen shots in notion’s digital notebook so now I have screen shots with relevant notes on it from the instructor, and I also has my relevant notes near them. This note taking system tries to put everything in one place for more efficient retrieval during revising my notes, and for better remembering the context in which the notes were taken.
  • Whenever the instructor shows us something he do using the technology that we were learning, I followed exactly with him on my personal computer to be truly engaged in the hands-on.
  • Whenever he explains something that I don’t understand, and I know it is easy to search for I search for it fast to look up what this means. I do this to just have an idea of some terms so I read about one or two sentences from Google’s search snippet result.
  • Whenever I have a question about something, I write it in the chat to the instructor without being embarrassed. It is important not to fool yourself that you know something to just appear knowledgeable since you are the one who will pay the price. Since this online training was rare which is unlike the weekly lectures of colleges or some live courses so I didn’t bother myself to search in advance before asking although I know this will be better to search first then ask, but I didn’t do so because this opportunity to have this instructor live answering to my questions is rare so it is important to save myself time and ask him if I thought that something will be tricky.
  • I usually try to ask the instructor’s deep questions about how to learn what they are presenting us since they have more experience. They could provide us with useful resources, and they could give us pieces of advice that will save us much time.

As you see by doing all this, I was actively learning. Making my hands dirty, taking screenshots, and notes. Asking in the chat, and asking about how we could better learn what they are presenting us. I think this sort of active learning makes us really engaged, understand well what is presented to us, learn well, and enjoy the learning opportunity.

It is important to mention that typing fast on the keyboard without looking at it which is called “touch typing” is one of the best skills I acquired. I could write notes fast when the instructor explains something, and I can write my questions fast in the chat. If I didn’t have this skill, I think my level of engagement would have been lower. Therefore, it is important to acquire the skills that will help you learn better like the “touch typing” skill. You could learn touch typing in English from here, and you can learn touch typing in Arabic from here.

2. Key Takeaways

  • Be prepared before your classes, and sessions by exposing yourself to the material even if you didn’t enter into details. Multiple exposure could be very important in learning and retention.
  • Invest in your learning, and your growth even if you will spend money. We should care about our time more than our money since money comes and goes but time never comes again. No problem if you paid to get a better screen that will help you in your work and learning, or if you bought a good book or course that will help you in your career.
  • Be engaged in your classroom or your online trainings and session. Take notes efficiently, search for thing you don’t know, and don’t be embarrassed to ask. However, for an ongoing weekly class I think it is better to search before you ask so that you could ask a better question, and get the most out of your teacher, lecturer, or instructor.
  • If you could practice something with your hands by following up with the instructor or lecturer during your session or lecture then do it.
  • Ask experts about how to approach learning things, if they have useful resources to share with you, or if they would like to give you any piece of advice to avoid falling in their mistakes.

3. Useful Pieces of Information

  • Will power gets consumed so don’t consume your will power in small unnecessary decisions like what you eat, and wear. If you could make up a system that ensure that you wear well, and eat healthy meals that you have already determined it will be good since you will take less trivial decisions, and thus reserve your decision quotas for the big and important decisions.
  • I know that different brain parts get activated during different activities. So if you didn’t find a solution to something then maybe it is found in another part of your brain. It will be great if you did another activity after this that activated the part of your brain that will give you hints on the solution during your diffuse mode of thinking. Great, and creative ideas and solutions could come when you are not intently concentrating on something like when you are walking, taking a shower, or in any easy physical activity that doesn’t take much thinking. Your brain is working on what you learned in the background. So no problem to take breaks when you are stuck in something.
  • Take out whatever physical or digital note taking system with you when you walk, run, or even eating to write down ideas that come into your mind during these non-mentally demanding tasks because the ideas and solutions that come in your mind during these times could be very creative, and solve many of your problems or at least improve how you do things.
  • Try to minimize your options to increase your final satisfaction with your choices. If you chose one thing out of 100 things for instance, then you have left out 99 other things and you may say that you didn’t choose the right thing. The decision could be overwhelming to make that you may finally make the wrong decision. But if you have three things to choose between, you have less things to concentrate on so you may take a better decision because you didn’t distract your thoughts on many different things, and you may end more satisfied with your choice since you could just have missed two things, and not 99 things as in the first example.


Thank you. I hope this post has been beneficial to you. I would appreciate any comments if anyone needed more clarifications or if anyone has seen something wrong in what I have written in order to modify it, and I would also appreciate any possible enhancements or suggestions. We are humans, and errors are expected from us, but we could also minimize those errors by learning from our mistakes and by seeking to improve what we do.

Allah bless our master Muhammad and his family.

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