8 Great Ways You Can Get Motivated to Study

A student taking notes off his laptop with overlay text: "Make Things Happen."

Drumming up the motivation to study is one of the biggest daily struggles for most students. With classes, extracurricular activities, and work, it is no surprise that when you find a shred of free time the last thing you would want to do is study. So we’ve put together a list of our 8 sure-fire ways on how to get motivated to study and improve your study habits.

1. Set goals

If you’ve read our other study tips and tricks, you’ve probably heard us say this more than once but setting S.M.A.R.T goals for yourself is one of the easiest ways to increase your motivation. Setting both long- and short-term goals will help you to keep the end in sight. Just be sure that your goals are both realistic and challenging. Make sure you’re meeting and getting the full benefit of them!

Pro tip: Posting your goals where you will see them every day is a great way to stay mindful of them and your progress. I always made myself a sign to hang on the shelf above my desk with my goal GPA for the semester. That way I had a physical reminder to look at every day, and I got to craft something fun!

2. Create your perfect study space

It is amazing what the environment around you can do for your mental state. Organizing your desk so that everything you need is within reach is a great way to get a head start on your study session. If your study space is your room, pick up a little! The act of picking up your daily clutter (we all have at least a little) will help you to declutter your mind.

3. Set a schedule

Set a study schedule (like a time of the week or the day). It’s a great way to keep procrastination out of your daily life. By setting aside a certain amount of time, you will not only ensure that you have enough time to complete your assignments and study for your exams, but you’ll also begin to make studying a normal part of your daily routine.

4. Just DO it!

The hardest part of pretty much anything is starting. But no matter how much you hate math or history or doing the dishes, it’s usually not so bad once you’ve gotten started. Set yourself a goal of studying for a solid 15-20 minutes without a break and see how you feel when the time is up. Chances are, you’ll be able to commit to another 15-20 minutes.

5. Pump up the jam

A pretty common way to get motivated for the gym is to listen to music that motivates you. But, did you know that it works the same way for studying? Put on something you know pumps you up and let it fuel your mindset before you start your study session. I like to listen to ACDC “Back In Black” or Walk Off the Earth “Rule The World” before switching to my favorite focus playlist.

Take a look at our post on how music (found on Spotify) can aid your study session for more awesome study jams!

6. Give yourself a pep-talk

This may make you feel silly at first but looking in a mirror and talking yourself up can actually help you to feel motivated to complete whatever tasks you’ve got on your to-do list. Try starting with telling yourself your goal for this study session, then work your way up to your long term goals. While you’re at it, throw in some things that you think are great about yourself like your amazing taste in sneakers or your killer baking skills. There’s nothing better than a confidence boost from a compliment to help you get into the right headspace.

7. Reward yourself

Each time you check off one of your study goals or make a breakthrough on a tough subject, reward yourself! Get yourself anything from a doughnut to a sweet new longboard depending on the goal. It’s depressing to work really hard on something and feel like no one knows or appreciates all of the hard work you’re doing. So rewarding yourself with a dinner out or a trip to the five-dollar movie bin is a great way to show yourself some love.

8. Write down how you feel after

This may sound strange, but you know how great you feel when you hit a big goal or finally finish that big paper? Writing down how good you feel after completing a tough task can work as great motivation the next time you’re having trouble getting started. Keep a notebook in your backpack and write down your triumphs. That way, each time you need a little extra push, you’ve got a whole book full of success!

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5 thoughts on “8 Great Ways You Can Get Motivated to Study”

  1. Avatar amanda says:

    Thanks a lot

  2. Avatar David says:

    Great tips! One of the most basic things that we need to understand is that each and every child has a different learning capacity and different learning style. Some child might grasp things quickly, while others may take time. In high school, more studying techniques are there which can help students to score well in exams. You have shared a good resource to get motivated to study.

  3. Avatar Gavin Basham says:

    My dad is going to be taking my electronics away and I was wondering should I be mad at him for taking my electronics? I’m having a hard time with studying.

    1. Allison Wignall says:

      Hey Gavin! Sometimes it helps to take away tempting distractions while trying to study. If you’re like me and need some breaks to refresh your mind while studying, try working for twenty minutes, then taking a ten minute break, then studying twenty again, and another ten minute break after that. It’s a good way to keep studying from getting too overwhelming. Good luck!

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