If there’s a Will, there’s a way: Staying motivated during uncertain times

A lack of motivation and positivity is normal and natural during this strange, difficult time. 

It’s important for us to identify how we feel so we can move forward and make this time beneficial. it’s also crucial to not be hard on ourselves.

A lot of people- including college students- are feeling depressed, uneasy and unsure right now

Any feelings or lack thereof are normal and natural. There’s nothing wrong with you for lacking positivity and motivation; no one is expecting us to be superheroes. We are trying to survive and get through this, not become millionaires or expert Ted Talkers in five weeks. 

Here’s how we can better ourselves in quarantine to help increase positive thoughts and work ethic:

First, we need to remember what motivated us in the past & visualize our future. This first step is key. Maybe helping others motivates you, or making art makes your day. It doesn’t matter what it is, as long as we can identify it and apply it to our present and future selves. 

You can stay happy, calm and motivated by writing down things you’re grateful for or at least think about them. Everything seems bleak, but writing down your gratitude can help you remember what life is all about, and value what you have.

One way to visualize our future is to make a vision board. Vision boards help people ‘visualize’ their future and goals. Make sure the vision board is out in the open, on a bedroom wall, for example.  

Next, it’s important we don’t compare ourselves to others and what they post on social media. By limiting social media usage, we can be happier and more motivated. 

Another way to have positive, uncluttered mental processes is by staying organized. You can do this by cleaning your room or house. Making a schedule and sticking to it can help, and that includes implementing a sleep schedule that works for you.

 Make sure you also create an adequate work-life balance. Don’t work in your bed; find a specific place to do work without distractions. 

It’s also important not to procrastinate, especially when school work keeps on piling up. Writing down what you need to do every day and setting a goal can put you on the right track to be successful. 

Your goal doesn’t have to be climbing Mount Everest. It can be as big or as small as you want. Checking off a goal from your checklist will keep you motivated and create feelings of accomplishment.

One way to try and finish that goal is to listen to music while studying. Listening to ambient sounds helps you concentrate and enjoy your time studying. 

You can also work in short bursts. For example, work for 30 minutes, take a 5 minute break- and repeat. If that isn’t working for you, switch the numbers up to find a way that does work.

Make sure you keep in contact with your professors in whatever way possible. This rings especially true if you are falling behind or need academic support. Your professors are here to motivate you. 

If your professor can’t solve your problem, talk to someone who can help. Be open and honest about how you’re feeling. 

Finding a mentor or someone you trust can help put things into perspective and give you an outlet. 

It’s still important to try to eat healthy food and exercise. Exploring nature by going outside (while maintaining social distancing) can help you refocus. According to a recent study, vitamin D is proven to make you happier. Soak up that sun!

Lastly, take a deep breath, meditate and realize this situation isn’t forever. We will get through this together, as long as we practice government guidelines. Post-quarantine may seem light-years away, but that doesn’t mean we can’t make the most out of the present.