How To

How to: Stay motivated

Do you ever just hit a point in the semester where your ability to care about anything goes out the window? Yeah, I’m about there right now. Even though I’d much rather lay around watching Netflix or reading for fun, life continues whether I want it to or not. Luckily, I’ve come up with fool proof ways to get through these dark times until I get back to my old ways.

1. Find something to look forward to every single day. 

Sometimes, having something to look forward to later in the day makes all the difference. Whether it’s a cookie or coffee or just getting to go lay back in bed, it really helps me get through the day to know I have something to look forward to later. Sure I always look forward to coming home to Patrick and the puppies, but something extra, something I normally don’t get or do makes me excited and want to get through classes and work.

2. Go to bed. 

When I get in these moods, the best way for me to beat it is to just go to bed and get a good night’s sleep. Obviously, don’t skip things you have to do to sleep but make sure to go to bed early and get enough good quality sleep. I use my Fitbit to make sure I’m getting enough good quality sleep and if for some reason I’m not, I adjust my sleep schedule.

3. Acknowledge your emotions. 

Acknowledging the fact that you don’t care about much right now is important. For me, it helps me clear my head and realize that I’m not just being lazy but that I don’t care and make the changes necessary to fix that. Maybe its an additional counseling appointment or re-evaluating if I’ve taken my medication per doctor’s orders. Maybe its taking a rest and relaxing for a few hours, I mean really relaxing not what I call “relaxing”. Maybe its a chip on my shoulder or some underlying irritation I have with something completely unrelated. Whatever it is, acknowledging how I feel only helps me process the feeling and figure out what I need to do to get back to my life.

4. Remember your goals. 

People don’t just go to law school for fun (at least most sane people don’t). Everything you do in life has a purpose and end goal in mind. Focus on the end goal. For me, I know in my heart 100% I want to be a lawyer. When law school absolutely sucks, which it does occasionally, focusing on being a lawyer and the reasons why I want to be a lawyer helps me get through the crappy stuff I have to do to get there.

5. Count your blessings and accomplishments.

I’m constantly astounded by the fact that I’m in law school. Not only in law school, but at a good law school with great friends. There are plenty of things in my life to be thankful for and focusing on those during rough times definitely puts things into perspective. When that doesn’t work, I have to take a few minutes to realize that I’ve accomplished a lot to get to where I am and to be proud of the things I’ve done. Being in law school is tough and getting there can be even tougher. Yet here I am, in law school and doing…..decently. Those are huge things to be proud of and taking a minute to focus on how far you’ve come makes the journey a little bit better.

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1 thought on “How to: Stay motivated”

  1. This is some great advice. It’s normal for law students to get in these moods during the middle of the semester. My friends and I talk about how to get out of them all the time. It’s really scary the first few days you wake up and you realize you don’t care about school anymore; I was the girl who always cared about school so to acknowledge the emotion I was feeling was very strange.

    Here’s some other bits of advice:
    1. Take a long shower/bath. You’ll be warm, getting clean and you’ll have time to think away from all of your distractions.
    2. Start outlining. It sounds counter-productive, but it actually works. Outlining is really therapeutic, you get to go through all of your notes and put all the important stuff in one place. It can take awhile, but at the end you feel really productive/motivated to move on to other readings/classes.
    3. Just take a day off and relax. I know that I get into the “I don’t care about anything” mood when I’m extremely overwhelmed. Taking a day to plan out my schedule/assignments, get housework done, run errands makes me that much more motivated to actually get my work completed, especially since I won’t be able to procrastinate by going grocery shopping.
    4. As a last ditch effort, call your parents and vent. My parents somewhat understand law school, but obviously not to the extent I do. When I call them and tell them that I feel like a slug and don’t want to do anything, I get the “You’re too good for this, you worked so hard, you need to graduate, just get to work done and relax later” talk mixed with the “Maybe you’re pushing yourself too hard lately, when was your last day off, do you think you need to take a nap/go shopping/grab a drink with somebody to get you out of this mood?” talk, as well.

    Hope you’re feeling not as stressed out. If you ever want to chat, let me know!

    Liked by 1 person

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