really the best way to learn programming is to just code and keep coding. You said you read something and you do the examples. Ok good, but is that all? I used to do the same thing and well I thought I knew all the concepts but I found later on when it came to applying them to a different program I hadn't really learned them. Then what I started to do was create my own examples. Ask yourself questions while reading. While your reading try creating your own examples before you even get to your exercises in the book. What you will end up doing is helping yourself understand this concept in a lot of different ways. The ways/examples you do might not be meaningful or useful but that is ok.
Next after you do the examples in the book, try to extend on them and make them into a more "complete" program/example.
Finally if you don't understand a certain concept try writing it down. Work through that concept on paper like the program would run it step by step. Then put that concept into a program and use your debugging tools to attempt to run the program step by step. Look at what values changed? Why did they change? Work that out on paper and compare the results. If you are getting the same results on paper as you would get in the program then you're understanding the concept more.
It all comes down to, just keep programming. Their will be concepts you don't get or understand right away. Just keep programming. We all need breaks and everyone here understands that. Though in the end make sure you come back and keep programming. When you come back instead of thinking that you have to reread everything try testing yourself on what you read previously without looking at your book. If you keep doing all of this before you know it you will solving problems all on your on.
Just remember though we all need help sometimes. Don't be afraid to ask questions. Everyone here be it professional or not need to ask questions sometimes and we have all been there before and we all understand (ok their are a select few people I've noticed that do believe they are above everyone and think they understood everything first try, but ignore those people).