You’re the One To Get It Done: Getting Motivated (Even When It’s Hard To)

Campus is finally alive again! It’s spring, it’s warm enough to not have to constantly layer up, and the student center square is filled with people. Oh, and you guess you do have that final paper coming up. What sounds more appealing right now: working on your paper or chilling outside in the amazing weather (when it isn’t raining, anyway)? You don’t even have to answer that. We all know it would be so much more fulfilling to drop everything, kick back, and bask in the sun. Man, that sounds good, but until we have a major in being beach bums, that doesn’t exactly line up with staying productive in class, sadly.

It’s not hard to imagine that, especially at this point in the semester, it’s not easy to get motivated to get work done for classes. But if it has to get done, it has to get done, right? Right. So what can you do to muster up motivation, whether you’re at the beginning, middle, or end of your work? Well, it’s going to be different for everyone, but I’ve got some suggestions for you!

Get in the Zone

Do you have a power song? Have a playlist that you listen to when you’re working out? Put it on and channel that energy you’d get from lifting or that runner’s high into when you’re writing (because really, writing is a workout for your brain). Get those sentence reps in and once you get into the zone, your writing flow should get going. If you can get a workout flow going, then you can get a writing flow going! Workout not your style? Maybe you want something a little more epic? Put on a dramatic film score and go on an unexpected journey into your paper (I recommend The Hobbit soundtrack, by the way). Honestly, whatever can get you feeling like you own the situation is going to make this that much more bearable.

Get a Writing Schedule Going

Maybe what’s holding you back the most is that the paper/project/whatever as a whole just seems daunting to you. When are you going to have the time to do the whole thing? Well, you don’t have to have time to do the whole thing. If you can just break it down into manageable chunks, then it doesn’t seem anywhere near as imposing. From there, find out when you can put aside some time here and there to work on it slowly (but efficiently). Do you work better in the morning? Maybe there’s a point late at night that your creative juices get going in full force? Bust it out then! Whenever you feel like would be your peak performance point, plan it out, make yourself reminders, and be dedicated to getting it done.

Reward Yourself

Writing is hard, guys, for real. Even the “best” writers have to go over and over and over their work for them to be satisfied with it. So you got the introduction cranked out this afternoon? Go outside and chill out for a while like you’ve wanted to for a while now. You’ve earned it! You finished up the big body of your paper that you’ve been struggling with? You just hit a milestone! Binge on some Netflix! Honestly, you’re doing hard work, and having something to look forward to after a good bit of focused work is something to get just about anyone in the zone to get motivated.

Get It Done!

Whatever it is that you employ to get yourself motivated to do your work, whether it’s something from this discussion or an idea from your own crafty mind, embrace it, own it, and feel good about it. Few things are more satisfying than getting a bit of your workload off of your shoulders, so get it done at your pace, on your own terms, and get motivated!

-Zack

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