If you are like me, you love handling multiple projects at the same time from different parts of your life. You strive to get good grades AND be active in campus activities AND explore places outside of campus. Frankly, I would hate to be someone who studies 24/7. There’s got to be at least a side hobby.
Of course, spreading yourself thin (but not too thin) has drawbacks because you might get good grades but not necessarily excellent ones. But it’s fine by me. I’m not a perfectionist. If you are also not bothered by this, you can definitely learn to balance work and study and life.
However, to do that you HAVE to be able to self-motivate yourself.
Self-motivation, in brief, is the ability to drive yourself to get the results you want on your own.
As University students, we are already compelled to be self-motivated, because no one will be behind you to push you to do your work. From my experience, studying in college is all about doing it yourself, with just a few guidelines. As an Arts student, independent research was key to all my assignments.
You either motivate yourself to meet the deadlines or you fail.
For those who feel that they are far from self-motivation, here are a few practical tips to implement in order to balance work and study and University life.
Set short-term actionable goals.
Do it for each aspect of your life. For instance, you can challenge yourself to meet one new friend per week (social life), reach a certain amount of savings (part-time job), and complete all your readings for the week by Sunday (studies).
And down be shy to celebrate when you reach your goal. Reward yourself with ice cream or something.
Create a schedule and stick to it.
It could be daily, weekly or monthly and should be adaptable to changes (because even your timetable can change and assignments are not always consistent over time and across your units/subjects). As long as your goals are met, it is up to you to allocate your time according to your lifestyle.
I would usually print the given study timetable and add my own activities in-between and after classes. I would use different colours to make it more fun. I’m sure you can also use tapps.
Learn to say no.
That’s a tough one, especially if you are an international student who is still trying to settle in. But if you do make time in your schedule to socialise or attend events, then you shouldn’t feel guilty about declining an invitation to go out, especially if you have to catch up on work/study.
Or you can also make time for unanticipated events. Expect the unexpected 😉
Know your limits and don’t go past them.
This is a follow-up to the previous point. Burnout is real and you’ve got to take care of yourself. Take a break and wind down from everything from time to time. Or else you might feel that you are losing control and ending up feeling demotivated!
Again, don’t feel guilty for cutting yourself some slack.
Moreover, everyone makes mistakes. Everyone falls from time to time. Your self-motivation strategies will not always be effective. But you just need to try again.
Your turn: What do YOU do to motivate yourself? Share your experiences in the comments below!
By the way, this week’s newsletter is going to be sent soon (happens every Friday)! If you would like to receive exclusive tips and tricks for students, sign up down below!
This week’s topic is about getting working experience during your University years 🙂
D. K. Waye.