6 Tips for the Unmotivated Student: How to Stay on Track After the First Week of School

Co-authored by Ashley Carter, staff writer at Avelist
There is something about the start of a college semester that makes me excited and thrilled to be there. Whether it's the new books, cute supplies or getting back into a routine after a long break, I'm always excited about day one. The entire campus is even buzzing with a positive and happy vibe. But then week two hits and just like all of the semesters before, I begin to lose interest and catch myself slacking off. Why is it that the motivation is no longer there? And surely I'm not the only student who feels this way. Skipping class and missing assignments is a waste of a good grade. So this semester I've decided to change it up and this is what I've been working on, three weeks into the fall semester.

1. Remind yourself why you are doing this: For some people, they simply just want a degree for the experience. For others, they may want to pursue a PHD or work towards specializing in a specific career. Either way, remind yourself that you have a personal goal. There's a reason that you are paying thousands of dollars for a higher education. Keeping your goal in mind encourages you to stay dedicated until the end.

2. Stay organized: One of the keys to success is organization. Having an organized schedule of classes and tasks serves as a reminder and takes some of the stress off of your studies. I use the My Study Life app. Its color coordinated layout and daily reminders keep me in check during the busy school weeks.

3. Take breaks: It's easy to get burnt out especially when you've been reading and writing for hours in the library. Give yourself a mental break. Go for a run, meet a friend for coffee or call your mom back on the East Coast. Taking an hour or two to let your brain restart will help you stay focused when you finally do get back to studying.

4. Find a study buddy: Working alone all of the time can drive you insane. By finding a reliable study buddy, it allows you to communicate your ideas, gain other perspectives and make studying less lonely. Most importantly, a study buddy holds you accountable. Keep each other in check and get the task done even though you'd most likely rather be at the movies.

5. Turn off social media: Today's generation relies on social media and it can even become an addiction. You don't have to quit cold turkey, just avoid the gossip on Facebook during study time. It's a major distraction and thankfully, everyone's posts will be there later when you have the down time. Can't seem to avoid your social life? Check out RescueTime to manage your time spent on social media.

6. Avoid working at home: You might find your home the most comfortable and convenient place to work. It's okay to work on your essay at your desk for an hour or so but do yourself a favor and explore other environments such as the library or your favorite local coffee shop. Working at home can interfere with finding separation between your student life and home life. When you're home, it should feel like home; where it's time to shut the books and relax.