dasgut wrote:So I have a question for you guys...
I usually try and do every problem in the book, but then invariably get frustrated and just put the book down when I can't solve a problem.
Trying to solve every problem is of course nice if you want a good understanding of the subject but with a good textbook there will almost always be some exercises you can't solve at your first try. When I fail at solving such an exercise I try not to spend too much time on it (this is sometimes easier said than done, I sometimes feel like I "should be able to" solve that specific exercise) and move on to other exercises or new subject matter. It is really inefficient spending hours on a single exercise. I take note of the exercises that I couldn't solve to return in the future though.
Taking time off trying to solve an exercise can be useful, I often come up with solutions much quicker on my second try. When I spend so much time on a problem I often feel like there is a particular approach which should work, and that results in tunnel vision which makes me ignore other possibilities. Giving up on the problem after some failed attempts and visiting it later avoids that.