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Finding the Motivation to End the Semester Strong

By Ryan Ellis
On April 12, 2017

Photo by: Ashley Alonzo

We are reaching the end of the Spring 2017 semester. As we continue down the road to finals, it is important that we stay vigilant and prepared to tackle any assignment left.

It is easy to sit back, relax, procrastinate and not study as much as we did in the beginning. However, it is important to recognize these behaviors and adjust them so that we can end the semester as strong as we started.

As assignments pile up on your desk, your dining dollars empty out and sleeping schedule becomes as outlandish as it could possibly be, consider these few tips to help you through the last weeks:

1. Stay organized / reorganize: It can be incredibly easy to lose your organization. Understand that nothing makes you feel as chaotic as clutter can.

What feeling is evoked when you see a cluttered school bag full of loose papers, a car filled to the brim with months of garbage or a room littered in clothes, product packages and dishware? I see anarchy.

Take a few hours to organize your home life, your car and your schoolwork for easy access. Also consider using that planner you bought in early August but haven’t touched since.

2. Count the small victories: With the constant influx of assignments, it is hard to remain motivated to turn in your work on time and study.

It is important to use those time management skills that you’ve acquired throughout your high school and college experiences (stay vigilant, freshman). Use your planner, dedicate days to accomplishing certain tasks and reward yourself when you accomplish something.

Tell yourself that you can watch an episode of a Netflix series (I recommend “13 Reasons Why”) or eat a cupcake if you do this assignment and so forth. If you reward yourself, you will feel motivated to continue.

3. Create a new playlist: Sure, this sounds like the ultimate tool for the procrastinator. But what do you have for the gym? You have a stellar soundtrack featuring the artists that inspire you to go further in your workouts, right? Create the same inspiring soundtrack for your studies.

Find a collection of songs that motivate you to do well in class and listen to them before, during and after your scholarly sessions.

Also, check out your favorite streaming service’s suggested playlists. Almost every service offers one, including Spotify, Apple Music and Tidal.

4. Go for a run: If you’re getting frustrated with yourself, and your assignments, take some time to give yourself some headspace. We are constantly bombarded with our thoughts telling us to do one thing, or another, and those thoughts can become cloudy the more that we look at an assignment.

It is important to take little breaks, allowing ourselves some mental clarity. And what better way to do that than to take a brisk walk or a run?

The cool, early spring months have shown to be quite a beautiful phenomenon recently. Go out, enjoy nature and give yourself time to find some clarity.

5. Form a study group: When studying for a large test, it is a good idea to form a study group with your colleagues who are in the class with you. Have you ever been to the Gangwish Library during finals week? It’s packed! With good reason! Study groups can produce a more successful session. Sometimes it is better to study with friends than to study alone.

6. Remind yourself of why you are struggling: Why are you here? What are you hoping to accomplish? Why is it important that you do well here? Ask yourself all of these questions, constantly. Keep reminding yourself of the importance of your college degree and how your future is being shaped by what you are doing now. You’ll see all of these struggles will seem a lot smaller.

There are a few tips to keep you going through the end of these next few weeks. Although a couple more weeks of classes seem like torture at this point, and it might feel like your professors are adding fuel to the already chaotic fire, it is important to consider your future and your success. Create a positive headspace and your physical body will follow suit. 

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