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First Person: I gradually got used to my study routine

By Wang Keju | China Daily | Updated: 2019-10-04 07:18

Zhang Chenchen, a senior student at Capital Normal University in Beijing

I am the sort of person who has to polish off a whole bag chips at one sitting, or I would be thinking about the percussive crunch all the time and end up munching on it anyway. I fail nine times out of 10 in my fights with temptation.

I could easily crack the problem by not buying chips. The real hot potato, however, is my addiction to my phone during my studies.

With notifications popping up every now and then, whether a Weibo "like" or a WeChat message or friend request, once I reach out for the phone, I can't help browsing through three photo albums, commenting on four statuses and watching two videos, which totally ruins my study schedule.

As a senior student, who will take the postgraduate qualification exam in less than six months, I know this weakness will not take me to a high-ranking university.

Two months ago, in a bid to use the hours more effectively, I joined a WeChat group that gathers together exam participants who are bothered by a similar problem.

Everyone is required to share their to-do lists in the morning and done-lists in the evening. If not, he or she has to send a red envelope of 100 yuan ($14) as a punishment. For a student who relies on 2,000 yuan a month for living expenses, that's quite a sum.

I regretted my decision the night I joined the group because it's way too challenging for me. During the first two weeks, only my strong reluctance to pay out the money made me keep up with my peers.

When I had an overwhelming urge to watch some funny short videos in the middle of my study session, I would remind myself by checking my bank balance.

Thanks to the supervision, I gradually got used to the study routine. By organizing my to-do list the night before, I could hit the ground running with my roadmap when I went to the library in the morning.

Though we're not under the same roof, seeing my fellow examinees sharing their daily accomplishments is a real spur to my own efficiency. Our growing familiarity means we also offer comfort and suggestions to anyone who runs into difficulties or emotional breakdowns.

One of my roommates was curious as to how I gained more self-discipline in my preparations for the exam, and once he learned the rules he became part of our alliance.

I have saved my daily "accomplishment lists", and I believe they can become the tickets to take me to my dream college.

Zhang Chenchen spoke with Wang Keju.

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