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What strategies do you find useful which help with getting more work/tasks done, even when you lack motivation?

I am a high school student and with this approaching school year, I want to be diligent and perseveringly studious with my coursework. However, in the past, I have found it difficult to keep going or even start important tasks for which I lack the motivation to do. I was wondering what strategies have helped you, as an individual, stay on top of your game and keep going even when worn-out? #college #career #marketing #motivation

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Jason’s Answer

Here are a few tips.

1) Relegate the time burners only to your evening quiet time. Surfing the web, playing games, reading articles, reading a fun book, watching tv, etc. They will make your day disappear and leave you thinking you were busy all day when really you were not....put that mobile phone down.

2) Tackle the important things you are procrastinating first. Get them done quick and you will worry less while accomplishing more. Most likely you have already done the easier things.

3) Make a habit of working at specific times. We easily get into ruts. They can be good or bad for you. Making a habit of working at specific times on specific things keeps you from being distracted.

4) find something that helps you focus. I like music in the background but not to distracting with to many words. It helps me accomplish a lot quickly with a high degree of focus. Leaving a tv on or other distractions can cut your speed in half or more. Sometimes a quiet room though is tough for maintaining focus for long periods of time.

5) Reward yourself when you have accomplished enough and achieved your goals. You know what you like and be accountable.

6) only associate with successful people you want to be like. Have that friend going nowhere who wants you to come hang out.. yeah thats a road to nowhere. Ask him to come study and say goodbye if he can't pull it off. You will become like the people you associate with frequently.

7) stay away from alcohol and drugs. Occasional alcohol wont affect your performance. Sustained use can degrade your focus, health, and ability to work effectively. Despite what you see on tv, i am always surprised how many sharp and successful people i run into who end up saying they rarely drink. Drugs? Thats for people who want to have a low quality of life.

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Joel’s Answer

Hi Timothy,

I think that's a great question and I think a lot of people feel the same way as you. High school, college, and beyond can bring the same feelings, so I think it's great that you are interested in finding out more right now! Here is what I would suggest:

1) Make a list of your priorities and what is most important to you. It could be academic, social, religious, etc. Rank them according to how much time and effort you need to put in to each. Then, next to each item, write the benefits of putting all of that time and effort in to those things. This is a great way to begin and stay motivated.

2) A lot of research shows that people you spend time with greatly influence you and your feelings. If you find yourself lacking motivation, try spending time with those who have a lot of energy and are generally positive. Also consider watching motivational TED talks and Youtube videos. (Tony Robbins is an excellent presenter)

3) Seek out a mentor at your high school to help you. It could be a teacher, counselor, coach, even a fellow student. Getting different perspectives and advice from other people is excellent not just for motivation, but for making new friends, learning about the world and preparing for post-high school. Personally, I had several people in high school that I greatly admired and looked up to and they helped me a lot in determining my next steps after high school and in motivating me to achieve them.

Above all, remember to focus on what matters to you. Sometimes classes can be boring and sometimes you think, "When will I ever need to know this?" But one day, maybe next month, maybe a few years from now, you will be very thankful for having studied and been involved at school.

Best of luck!

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bridget’s Answer

Imagine yourself walking across the stage to receive your diploma; literally raise your arms up in triumph...then set about your day...

Get a pad of paper and make of list of items to complete that day; tick them off when complete.

or create a "sticky note" TO DO list on your computer screen....then delete each item when complete... end of day, no more note on your desktop!

Watch this TED Talk video -- trust me, you'll be motivated!! Jane McGonigal promises to add 7.5 more minutes to your life

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Dan’s Answer

I think the two biggest pieces of advice on this I can offer are:

1) make a list of 'to do items.' I find motivation/satisfaction in being able to check boxes off my list and feel a sense (even a small one) of accomplishment.

2) break bigger items into smaller components as your to do items in #1. If you're building a house, that takes many months, but if you break it into prep site, excavate, build foundation, frame, etc, you have many more accomplishments along the way to achieve and help motivate you in progressing.

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Ken’s Answer

Hi Timothy!

You asked a very important question!

Here are some very interesting tips:

Best of luck! I would like to follow your progress! Please keep me informed.

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Jonathan’s Answer

All great advice and examples!

I've struggled my whole life with motivation that has turned into issues of procrastination.

While developing habits, incorporate positive feelings with those new habits that you know you will need going forward. By seeing studying for instance as an opportunity instead of a choir it becomes not only easier but a desire to do so. Yes it is easier said then done, and not saying it won't always be a somewhat of a struggle, but the effort is worth in when paired with the other habits the others have listed.