Hi everyone my name is Hannah and I'm a third year student studying Biomedical Science. I'll be starting my MSc in Data Science and Applied Analytics next year. Outside of university I've really enjoyed teaching myself to crochet over the…
For most people, the hardest part about studying is starting. The thought of it can be incredibly unappealing, especially during these cold winter months bundled up in bed with your phone in your hand and Netflix on your laptop, however, it can be easier to keep going once you start, it’s just finding the willpower to do so.
Think about why you’re at university
One big motivation is to think of why you’re doing this in the first place, does this allow you to get to your dream job? will this provide a stepping stone to somewhere else? Writing these reasons down and sticking there where you’ll see them can be big study motivators and they’ll allow you to realise why you’re doing this in the first place and keep you aligned with your end goal. Your desk is a great place to have these reasons if this is where you primarily study or changing your phone lock screen to a motivational quote can help you stay off of it whilst you’re studying.
Changing your study space
Revising and doing coursework in the same environment every day can quickly get boring and cause the thought of studying to become even more unappealing. Doing work in the same spot over and over becomes very repetitive, therefore by changing your study space you can increase your productivity by keeping the environment fresh and new. This could be studying in a coffee shop, in a group setting with friends, in the library or even booking out a room by yourself. You could even incorporate socialising within this, for example, if you’re meeting up with friends for a coffee, get there an hour before to get some revision in. Moreover, you may find the change of environment causes you to become more focused, for example in the silent area of the library you’re more likely to get on with work as using your phone could distract others.
Silencing your phone
Speaking of using your phone, this is often the main problem keeping most of us from studying effectively. Silencing your phone’s notifications or putting a timer on certain apps will keep you focused and allow you to remain in a focused studying mindset. Apps like the Flora app are also great for staying focused as they prevent you from using your phone until a set period has passed, this can allow you to keep motivated to study since you’re remaining undistracted.
Create a balanced schedule
Additionally, motivation can only exist if you’re allowing yourself to enjoy yourself too. Filling your days feeling bad about procrastinating on your phone or spending every minute with the stress of not revising enough in the back of your head means you’re not actually enjoying your time off and can only further push you away from work. Instead, you could try creating a schedule that incorporates both fun activities and academic commitments. For example, giving yourself a night off with friends means you’re more likely to study as you know you can enjoy yourself at a later time.
Celebrate your milestones
Finally, a great way to keep your motivation going is to reward yourself every time you reach a small milestone. For example, treat yourself to your favourite snack when you’ve finished a lecture. This doesn’t have to be expensive either, it could simply be not allowing yourself to watch that new show on Netflix until you’ve finished your essay. Once you’ve completed this milestone you’ll feel even better for doing so and can actually enjoy the reward without the threat of procrastination hanging over you.