One of the hardest things that any student has to go through, or anyone for that matter, is the whole productive thing. Its so hard to keep yourself productive, especially on those days where the sun never really properly rises and its just dreary and rainy all day. It can be really hard on these days to just roll out of bed, let alone get up and get a productive and motivated day. For me, I really struggle on some days to just feel like I can concentrate, so I do completely understand how hard it can be. I do have a few things which I like to do when I’m feeling unproductive, but really can’t afford to be. These are something I like to do to help myself feel a bit more motivated.
Make a To-Do List:
This is one of my go to ideas. I love to make lists and making a list of the things I really need to do really helps to kick your brain into gear and help me stay productive. There is something about writing out a little list and crossing things off once they’ve been completed, that is just so satisfying. By writing out a list, you are helping to underline all the things that need to be done. I find it helpful afterwards to put a little star next to the things that need to be done first, that way I can focus on those first. Yes, sometimes you end up writing up a list and feeling stressed about what more you have to do that you haven’t already done, but for me, I find that if you figure out what needs to be done first, it makes things seem that little bit more manageable. The key thing to remember here, is to not spend all your time on a list, but at the end of the day, if you do, you have a list and you’ve already done something.
Make your bed:
This is actually really well circulated, but it really does work. One of the first things I do every morning is make my bed. It sends a sort of mini message to my brain, almost like I can’t go back to bed, just because its already made. Now, I find that I physically struggle not to make my bed first thing in the morning. Its so simple, yet its really helped make me a morning person, which has really made more productive.
When you do eventually get around to sitting down and thinking about working, I would always suggest on a unmotivated day, to start small. Start with those little tasks, like email this person or read over thins. By completing the little tasks and crossing them off your list, you will automatically begin to feel better. As your list grows smaller, everything will feel more manageable and if you are like me, you will feel more motivated to finish the list. From here you can build yourself up to work on the bigger things that you really don’t want to do.
Scroll Through Pinterest:
I love doing this. I find it so useful to look through Pinterest’s study section to see all the photos of people’s revision beautiful revision notes. Just looking at them can be so inspiring. I like to do this in the morning after I’ve woken up on during a break when I’ve got little to nothing done. I can strongly advise just browsing through images on any social media, Pinterest and Instagram are the best, for any study related photos just to help get the inspiration flowing again.
I know this is kind of contradictory to my previous bit of advise, but it is so important that when you are work, you are 100% working. Turning off your phone, or even silencing it, theoretically will make you less likely to pick it up and just spend the next hour Facebooking. It doesn’t matter if your in the library, an hour on your phone is an hour on your phone, not studying. It also helps to block certain websites,, which though I don’t personally do, I know many people who do and it works charms for them. Instead keep it offline. Write down as much by hand as you can. Not only does this help you memorize better and quicker, but it also will help when it comes to written exams and timed tests. The more used to writing consistently with pen and paper you are, the easier it will be when you don’t have any electronically devices available to you. One of my favourite apps for this is called Forest. Forest will literally force you to be unable to use any apps while you have the apps running. You put in the time you want to remain focused for and start it. As you keep studying, it will grow trees until you have a small forest everyday. If you break the study period by using your phone, the tree dies. I find it to be so useful to keep me working.
I mentioned earlier about writing a list, but there is more you can do if a list still hasn’t worked. Try tidying your work space or desk. Making it clean and organised visually helps to organise things in your head. It sounds silly but it really does work. Personally I can’t work in a messy space and I re tidy my desk anywhere from once a day to 7 or 8 times. I also like to keep a diary to track wha needs to be done or attended when. I find this to be so good when you can’t figure out your week or you know that your going to forget something.
Working isn’t about constantly focusing on something and pushing yourself for hours on end. Yes, I know this techniques work for some people, but for the majority, including myself, sitting working for hours straight really kills motivation and leads to auto-pilot brain. For those who don’t know, auto-pilot brain occurs when you begin to automatically work without really concentrating on what your doing. Its one of the worst habits you can fall into as a student and results in hours of work not really understood or absorbed. You can get it when reading, writing, copying down and listening. By taking short breaks, your avoiding letting your brain get tired or bored. Most people suggest a 5 minute break every 25 minutes, but do whatever works for you. Personally I like to do 30 minutes or more of work with a 5-10 minute break in-between. In my breaks I’ll play some game on my iPad or do something productive, putting the washing on or brushing my teeth in the morning.
These are my general go too when I wake up feeling unmotivated or unproductive, on those dreary days. I hope my little bits of advice help if your feeling completely unmotivated and need a little boost. Let me know aha you think in the comments below x