My FOOBAR Schedules


Ever since taking up experiments in the art of studying in college to find one that suits me well, I’ve been plagued by many (often necessary) failures. I’ve made many schedules, all of them wildly different from the other and yet, towards the end of the semester, I’d resort to one tried and true method for finals: the last night. This is the night where you have a one night stand with your textbooks – treating them like they are your world, knowing them intimately, passionately (eh, not always!), not because you want to, but you need to.

Here’s a sample schedule I’d made for four years in college in my first month there:

4.30a: Alarm Clock

6.00a: Read up for the day

7.30a: Breakfast

8.30a: Prep for college

4.30p: Tea

5.00p: Homework

7.30p: Dinner

8.30p: Study

10.00p: Facebook

11.00p: Sleep

Worst. Schedule. Ever.

I never followed it. The rigidity wouldn’t let me focus on tasks at hand, at all. If I was a machine, yes, it could work (one hour for Facebook, really?). So it’s last night studying again.

Fast forward four years later and I’m slightly better at handling myself. Thanks to websites like Coursera, edX, Codecademy and others, I’ve been able to force myself to study better. In addition, I learned about the Scrum software development framework much more recently. It put a lot of things into perspective.

I have a lot of interests (and not just surface level interests, I gorge on details!) and it’s hard to keep a tab on one. I don’t want to end up a jack of all trades and master of none, at least not now. I want to focus on one task at hand, learn it until it becomes second nature to me and then move on.

Which brings me to my new schedule. I am learning a lot of new things everyday (Java, STL, Python, Ruby, CL, HTML, CSS etc, in addition to more artsy stuff). However I’m finding it difficult to learn everything all at once. I thought alternating languages would be a good idea, but nope, that didn’t work either. So now I’m going to extend the run to a week (remember I told you I read about Scrum?) for each new technology, or maybe two weeks and at most a month. I’ll get a feel for each new thing learnt a lot better, I guess.

Right now, I’m focusing on web development until the next month.

Hopefully this plan doesn’t go FUBAR. 😉


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