The holiday season can be an extremely difficult time to get motivated to study. As if keeping yourself focused under everyday pressures isn’t enough, try throwing holiday parties, copious amounts of food, gift shopping, and family into the mix!
I am here to tell you that yes, it is possible to stay on track with your studies during the holidays, and maybe even…get ahead!
Here are some ways to increase your motivation to study:
1. Check your course timeline
Your course schedule is a very important tool for staying on track with your studies. It is important to check that timeline regularly and make sure you aren’t falling behind. The timeline was designed to guide you through to completion of the Medical Transcription/Healthcare Documentation program within a year, but many people finish well ahead of their timelines and end up completing the course earlier than expected, and that’s great! Just remember… graduation means being able to enter the working world and making money… that is incentive enough to stay motivated!
2. Reward yourself for studying
The idea behind this is to give yourself positive reinforcement. Reward yourself each time you accomplish something. Knowing what goodies await you ahead, will motivate you to persevere in accomplishing your tasks. Food goodies work really well as positive reinforcements (think holiday treats!)
3. Study with your friends
Go onto the forum and chats sessions to give your fellow students a lifeline. Students who study at least once a week in a study group with other students are more likely to have a better understanding of the course materials, ask good questions, and be more engaged in discussions. Frustration can really block motivation. Collaborating with others can really keep frustrations at bay.
4. Remind yourself of your long-term goals
Knowing what you want to accomplish is the most basic form of motivation. The appropriate output is a reward itself that could motivate a person to work. Every time you feel like being lazy, think about what you really want at the end of the day, to gain momentum. In this case, it would be to pass your upcoming exam.
5. Eliminate distractions
If you are surrounded by things you would rather do than study, you will probably do those things instead of studying. Finish up all of your assorted loose end tasks. The less time you spend thinking about them, the more time you’ll spend actually studying.
6. Sync your learning to your interests
The best way to make study interesting is by indulging in learning activities that suit your nature and are in sync with your interests. For example, if you have a strong Creative Nature, you should try and learn lessons by picturing them or using images to relate to specific topics. If you like games, try playing a game of Mad Gab, helping you with your listening skills. If you love what you do, boredom shouldn’t be a problem too often!
7. Take breaks
I can’t stress this enough. When you feel that you need to take a break, try to stop at a point where it is logical to stop. Taking a break seems counter-intuitive to motivating yourself to study, but you don’t want to burn yourself out. You should find it easier to get through a chapter or finish a dictation after taking a short break. Break your studying into smaller groups such as one hour, than taking a 5 minute break to do something physical instead of sitting. This will wake your brain up and keep you more alert.
8. Establish a comfortable environment
You will be more inclined to study if you feel comfortable. As much as possible, you should designate a special place to study. This place should be uncluttered and should provide few distractions to allow for maximum concentration.
9. Establish reasonable goals for a study session
You probably won’t get very far if you look at your study session as “mission impossible.” By setting goals for yourself you will be able to monitor your progress through larger tasks, such as working through a chapter in your text. In addition, setting a goal for yourself at the start of each study session can act as a motivator, as you should be able to see yourself working steadily toward an end result instead of working at a seemingly never-ending project. Again, refer toto help you set these reasonable goals.
10. Use a motivational poster
Place the poster where you can see it as you study. The poster should include positive words and a picture depicting success. You can buy one or even make your own. You can also read inspirational stories about real people who have achieved success through effort.
Just do it. Once you do, you will feel a lot better than if you are worried about getting it done.