One of the most effective ways to get through the grind of daily uni life is to set yourself smaller goals when the end of the line seems too far away to be realistic. ‘Baby steps’ is probably one of my most used phrases throughout semester; in a good week I congratulate myself on finishing an assignment early; in a not so good week I’ll probably congratulate myself on just turning up to class.
Regardless of how big or small your goal is, giving yourself something to work towards keeps up the sense of achievement to motivate you to get to the next goal.
If setting goals seems a little arbitrary to you, try scouting around for some volunteering opportunities to keep you motivated. Be an O Week tour guide, a student mentor, take a PASS program, even just sign up to a weekly online magazine related to your studies to keep you in the know and keep your brain active and interested.
Find the balance
If you’re like me and manage bizarre hours between work shifts and socialising, you’ll understand how difficult it is to fit time in for study or for yourself. I can’t stop you from procrastibaking, watching Netflix until it makes sassy remarks about your social life, or from napping in lieu of studying - but I can advise you that if you maintain a healthy social life, studying becomes much easier (and Netflix won’t judge you). By allowing yourself one or two nights a week to let go and forget about whichever essay you’re writing, you burn out a lot of restless energy that usually leads to dedicated procrastination. It also makes you more relaxed at work, because you know that you’re actually productive in your study time.
The balance is hard and it can take a while to figure it out, but you get better at it (trust me) and it honestly pays off.
Also, you can totally put time management skills on your resume afterwards.
Keep it up
One of the hardest things to do as the semester wears on is keep up with your studies. I don’t just mean assignments here either, but also keeping up to date with your reading list and your lectures. If you’re anything like me you struggle to pay attention to lectures by about week 4 - and that’s where setting yourself goals comes in handy. I usually dedicate one day to catching up on whatever lectures I’ve missed, and then reward myself with the rest of the day to do whatever I please - and 60% of the time, it works every time.
If you have any advice of your own, any thoughts on techniques or questions about staying motivated, share them in the comments below and help your fellow students out. In saying all that, I wish you luck. Keep up the mantra, set yourself some goals and keep holding on til the end of the ride, guys.