I've been taught this ever since I started to learn how to read. Roughly translated, it means: if you don't get it the first time, read it over again thoroughly. If you still don't get it, read it again and again, until you do. This logic has been so engraved in my academic life as well as my personality that I sometimes feel obsessive-compulsive, but the strategy has never failed to get me good grades in school.
That is, until I started taking Linear Algebra.
I had always been proud of my mathematical skills and never doubted that I would become a math major. But no matter how many times I read over my notes and the textbook, I just, don't, get it. Where's that epiphany moment? Am I still not reading enough times? I panicked a little as I read the theorem over again. I still couldn't figure out any of the exercise problems. I panicked a little more.
I know, this sounds like such a Wendy problem. And yes, I am absolutely laughable for fretting over such an insignificant failure. But I couldn't find a way to talk myself out of this obsessive-compulsive cycle, and my consistent inability to solve any problems frustrated me greatly. Finally, I threw my laptop on the bed, and threw myself on top of it. Oh well, I thought, maybe it's time to give up.
And so I did. No one will penalize me if I don't major in math, and as far as I know, I'm not the first student to be daunted by Linear Algebra. One of the few good things of being an adult is that I get to choose in whichever way I want to live, and I decide that I detest Linear Algebra with every single tortured brain cell. If I still have no clue what's going on after reading the same chapter for a hundredth time, and can honestly say that I don't even care in the least bit, then perhaps this is not the right book for me at all.
But yeah I'll just read the damn section one more time. Who knows.