Your teacher assigns a project due next week.
“You will not be able to write this essay the day before it is due! It requires research, editing, and effort,” says your teacher.
You accept that as a challenge. You wait an entire week before beginning the essay, due to an overpowering lack of motivation, and find yourself staying up through the night typing up the assignment.
Procrastination is a habit shared by many high school students. But, how can we stop? Staying motivated can be difficult especially when running low on energy after school, work, sports, clubs or any other activity. However, it can be done.
One way to keep your goals in sight is to practice a routine. This doesn’t have to be a strict itinerary of everything you will do at every minute of the day, but once you get in the habit of doing everything at certain time, getting your work done will become much easier. Doing your homework right when you come from school is a good way to reduce stress levels, instead of doing it last minute at midnight because you underestimated the time it will take. Although you may be tired after a long day of note-taking or tests, getting your homework done will lessen the pressure you’ll feel for the rest of the day. Going to bed early because you’re no longer up all night finishing a project, may take some getting used to, but it will make you feel more rested in the morning.
Going to bed earlier is not the only healthy habit you can practice in order to stay motivated. The more energy you have, the more work you are likely to get done. A caffeine boost is one method thought to help keep open your drooping eyelids. Your liveliness will be short-lived once the caffeine wears off, however.
A healthy diet consisting of more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains can give you more energy than the cheez-it, oreo, and mac and cheese diet. To be more alert during the day,and therefore more productive and motivated, you do not have to cut all unhealthy things out of your diet; just make sure to include more necessary nutrients. Fruits and vegetables create sustainable energy that keeps you awake throughout the day. Adding a workout to your routine can also help you feeling energized and motivated, as long as you do not exhaust yourself. The feeling of accomplishment and reward you get when finishing an exercise is similar to that of finishing work, and is caused by a chemical reaction of endorphins in your brain. Once you feel a little accomplished, you want more, which makes staying on task easier.
Besides your brain rewarding you with feelings of accomplishment, try to treat yourself to stay motivated. After finishing an essay you can let yourself watch an episode of your favorite show or indulge in a sweet treat.
Staying motivated also relies heavily on knowing what you have to do. If you’re not aware of what the English homework was, how do you expect yourself to get it done in a timely manner? Woodland gives out free planners to all students. These agendas are extremely efficient for keeping track of what you have to get done. If you still find yourself not using the Woodland agenda planner, try buying your own homework notepad or setting reminders for yourself on your phone. At home, keep sticky notes posted near your work space to keep in mind what’s still left to do.
Finally, the most important part of staying motivated is to distance yourself from other distractions. Phones play a large part in distracting you from your goal at hand. It may be hard to completely put away your phone until your done with an assignment. However, you can use it freely afterwards, and not have to worry about homework as you scroll aimlessly past Instagram posts. Changing your settings to “do not disturb” may help, since the constant sound of message alerts won’t tempt you to look away from your assingment.
If you find yourself to be a procrastinator, hope is not lost, and you can still change your ways. A strong sense of motivation is achievable, and will help you not only in high school, but throughout the rest of your life.