Motivating Yourself To Get Stuff Done

Tips on how to motivate yourself to get stuff done.

Motivating Yourself To Get Stuff Done

Isabelle A., Reporter

It’s difficult to not procrastinate.  Obviously, binge-watching a show sounds more fun than editing your rough draft.  However, holding off won’t make your schoolwork go away.  The longer you wait, the more stressed you’re making future you.  Everyone’s aware that you shouldn’t procrastinate, but it’s not an easy habit to break.  Here’s some tips on how to motivate yourself to get stuff done.

  1. Stop looking for motivation.  My problem is that I say “I’ll get it done when I feel motivated to do it.”  Though, I rarely seem to get in that state of being ready to conquer everything.  Feeling tired and lazy is no excuse to not do what you need to do, get up and get it done.
  2. Look for motivation.  Sounds a bit contrary to my first point, but hear me out.  You shouldn’t wait for motivation to find you, but there’s tons of motivational material to help put you in a productive mindset.  YouTube and Instagram are filled with aesthetic videos and photos of people studying to give you study vibes.  
  3. Study with someone (virtually).  With COVID-19, we’re encouraged not to meet up with people, however, there are alternatives.  I have a few study buddies across America.  We’ll have FaceTime calls where we mute ourselves and point our camera toward our desk and just study together.  It restricts the use of my phone and, when I see someone else being productive, it helps me be productive too.  If you feel you’d be too distracted on a FaceTime call with your friend, YouTube has many “study with me” videos.
  4. Put away your phone.  My excuse for keeping my phone near me while studying is “well, what if I need to text a friend with a question?” To remedy this I simply write my question or circle the problem and come back to it.  Then, I’ll put my phone out of reach and put it on Do Not Disturb to avoid getting distracted by any notifications.
  5. Do the hard stuff first.  When faced with the option of studying for a difficult test or completing a small homework assignment, most of the time you’ll be more drawn to doing the homework instead. Then, you’ll leave studying for the test until the last minute.  The method you want to follow is: difficult work you don’t want to do, easy work you don’t want to do, difficult work you want to do, and finally, easy work you want to do.
  6. Don’t take excessive breaks.  Breaks are important but it’s easy to let them get out of control. The more breaks you take, the more your study flow is broken.  Only take breaks when you’re feeling like you can’t focus, have a headache, or need to go to sleep.  You can’t be productive when you’re not feeling up to par.  
  7. Romanticize learning.  I’ll turn on some ambience or classical music so I feel like I’m learning in a beautiful library.  Recently, I’ve gotten into the dark academia aesthetic, an aesthetic which idealizes classic literature and a passion for learning.

To conclude, just get to work, the only way to get stuff done is to go and do it.