- Put the hardest homework at the top of your list. Why? Well, this allows you to kick it up a notch! You can start, move on, and then continue re-thinking it (starting gives it a place in the "depths" of your mind -- an inventive part of your mind) and then going back to it, to do more, so you won't get too bogged down, but it will have priority for the subconscious mind to work on it! See, you don't have to get stuck in that problem -- that might take all of your time:
Do a quick effort; make it a worthwhile try, then go onward to less demanding homework. Later, going back -- and seeing how you can improve the first one with fresh bits and pieces.
Open "secret back-channels" -- just starting, even if you have to come back to finish, gets your creativity to kick in (this gets dark recesses of your mind to really work for you!). Creative juices can be inspiring, refreshing, helpful!
Break it down. Make piecework; quickly overview the topic: scan!
~ Read headings, intro, maps, charts, pictures, captions, bold or italic lettering, footnotes, and chapter summaries to get ideas and perspectives/angles for ideas to start yourself thinking.
~ Begin your answer to each problem and essay question, by doing parts! How? Make a first sentence or step, do any logical, little bits and bites (go step-by-step).
~ Add a second thought/step and another -- each flowing from the previous one. Going one phrase or sentence at a time makes it possible to write or do something.
~ Skip some lines, to leave room to fill in later -- if you need to move on to another area.
To re-kick-start an answer: Read what you have already written/or have done to check it, and see what flows from there', to lead your thinking to your next thought/step, and so on.
- Take advantage of any holidays or vacations that may be coming near as a motivator. On a Thursday, remind yourself that it is almost the weekend, and the moment this homework assignment is done you'll be one moment closer. Remember that Thanksgiving, winter break, or summer break is nearing, and the moment your homework is done you can enjoy it to its fullest.
- Think of it this way: if you procrastinate, you're spending time worrying about the task in addition to the time you actually do it. If you just take action and complete it as soon as you think of it, then you'll have more time to relax.
Work smarter, not harder. A fried brain absorbs little information. Break up your homework time into chunks. Take regular breaks. Set a timer; take a five to ten minute break for each hour you study. Get up, stretch, and move around. Drink water and eat a little fruit: water will refresh your system, and half an apple provides a better effect than a sugary energy drink.
Think of the consequences. What will happen, if you don't do your homework? Will you get a bad grade? Will your teacher be disappointed in you? If none of these things seem to apply to you, remember that homework is to help you learn, which everyone ultimately wants. In the real world, knowledge helps you master the rules of the game.
Think of the benefits. What will happen, if you do your homework? You'll probably get a good grade. Your teacher will appreciate your efforts. You have learned a great deal, and you'd be paving your way for a better life simply by putting your pencil to paper! Putting yourself in a positive state will reap in the benefits and ultimately surge you with the energy and hope to focus back on your work, and even enjoy what you're doing!
Find a place with less distraction. Set up your special study place. No friends, television, or other potential distractions should be present. Your homework place should also have a hard surface, like a table, to write on. If you need to do some of your homework on a computer, as many high school students do, make sure to avoid chat programs, unrelated websites, etc. If you have difficulty keeping focused, or awake, consider doing your homework at the library, at a table with some amount of foot traffic passing by it. The quiet atmosphere will help you focus, the surrounding mild activity will help keep you from falling asleep, and if you get stuck, there are those helpful librarians and references.
- Don't go on a cleaning binge as a way to procrastinate. Focus only on where you'll be working, and leave it at that.
Find a homework partner. Make sure this person isn't one of your crazy friends who'll distract you. Find someone to sit with who is quiet and focused. This will help you feel comfortable working, because someone else is working along with you. Just be sure not to end up talking more than working.
Create your own learning method. Everybody learns at their own pace and uses different methods to help memorize the material. Some find walking helpful, while others like to listen to music while they study. Whatever it is, experiment until you find something that seems to work well for you.
Listen to some quiet music (optional). Listening to music and studying does not work for everyone. If you are going to listen to music, try to listen to classical music or instrumental songs. Or if classical isn't for you, just pick quiet songs that you don't know, and start working, so you don't get caught up in the words.
Exercise briefly during each study break. It will help relieve tension, clear your mind, help you focus and make you feel awake. For example, walk around, stretch, do jumping jacks, or jog in place.
Make a routine. A routine will get you into doing homework as a habit. Schedule times and days so you are totally organized as to what you're doing this week, the next, and even the week afterwards. Surprises will occur, but at the very least, you know what you're doing!
- Put your phone, computer, and anything else that might distract you far from your reach. Then stay in a quiet room where you know you won't get distracted. Keep a timer for every 30 minutes to an hour, so you know how long you've been working and can still keep track of time.
Prioritize. Divide your homework according to your ability in the subject. If you're not so good, do it first. If it's an easy assignment, take a break and do it in 15 minutes or so, then get working again! If it's a long-term project, do it last. Not that it's not as important, but you need to save your time for the things with near-due-dates.
Get some success: you might prefer to get one or two easy tasks over-with at the start of a homework session, saving the hard stuff for last. Diving right into the hard stuff can be discouraging, and studies show that many people learn well when they start with easier material and work up to the harder stuff. Getting a few easy tasks done quickly can remind you of how good it feels to be productive. Some people, however are more motivated to dig into the hardest stuff first. It will make the rest seem like a breeze. Find out what works best for you.
Use simpler problems to find the steps to do harder solutions. Most problems can be broken down into simpler problems. That's a key to try on most math and science work and exams.
So what are you waiting for, get to your homework!!
If you’re in desperate need of some motivation, we’re going to fix that problem, right here, right now.
WARNING: I’m going to swear and yell a little in this post.
Desperate times call for desperate measures.
You said you needed motivation. I’m going to do what needs to be done to get your ass in gear. NO EXCUSES.
If this isn’t the kind of motivation you need, leave now. You’ve been warned.
Do you want to get off your ass and start producing instead of wallowing in despair, depression, self pity, fear, doubt or whatever is holding you back?
Let’s DO THIS.
The point of this exercise is to give you motivation to do something right now. Don’t just absorb this and continue sitting around procrastinating.
Follow the steps below carefully.
The world doesn’t care.
And if you’re feeling depressed or down, stop feeling sorry for yourself while you’re at it. It doesn’t matter.
We all face obstacles. How you deal with those obstacles defines who you are and determines how successful you are in life.
Did you catch that? It was the secret to life. Seriously.
Let me say it again.
We all face obstacles. How you deal with those obstacles defines who you are and determines how successful you are in life.
Period. End of story.
I don’t care if you’ve seen it before. Watch it again.
Be warned, if you’re not working towards being self employed, this video might push you in that direction.
4. Put a pot of coffee on or get some tea brewing.
Try a bulletproof coffee if you need an extra kick.
5. If you haven’t eaten something, eat a little snack now.
For god’s sake don’t eat a fucking twinkie or some other junk food.
Eat something healthy. Eat some nuts or fruit. Take your vitamins.
6. Do one of the following three things:
A) Take a shower, OR
B) Go for a brisk walk, OR
C) Call the friend who most lifts you up and makes you feel great after every conversation. Tell him or her that you need a little pep talk. Put a 10 minute limit on the conversation.
7. If you’re around people right now, go tell one of them how much you appreciate him or her.
Just say, “hey, I wanted to tell you that I appreciate you because…”
If you’re not around people, think about something or someone you’re grateful for. Go over the reasons you’re grateful in your mind.
Gratitude is happiness. Happiness is motivating. Be grateful more often by thinking about who and what you’re happy for, or by telling someone.
8. If you normally sit down to work, stand up.
Standing up to work is motivating. It gets the blood flowing.
9. Turn off email, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and whatever other social procrastination network you’re part of.
Turn off the TV if it’s on.
Seriously, TURN THEM OFF.
10. Now, put on your favorite music playlist.
Play something that gets you jacked.
Hint: try the playlist you use at the gym.
(If you don’t regularly go to the gym or workout otherwise, start doing that tomorrow. You have to be healthy to stay motivated.)
11. List the top 3 positive outcomes of achieving your task.
Think about what you’re planning to accomplish today.
Don’t worry about everything that’s holding you back from accomplishing it. Instead, focus on the positive things that will happen once you get it done.
For example, if you have homework to do, your list might look like this:
1) I’ll learn something useful.
2) I’ll make myself and my teacher proud of what I accomplished.
3) I’ll get closer to achieving a good grade in the class so I can graduate and move on to doing what I’m really meant to do in life.
Write down the three things. Don’t skip this part. Make sure you focus on the 3 most important outcomes.
12. Think about the part of doing this task that you enjoy.
Most tasks have some enjoyable component to them.
Focus on what you like about what you have to do, no matter how simple or how small. Enjoy the very act of doing your task for what it’s worth.
13. Listen to this podcast episode
We’ve just recorded an episode of our podcast about THIS VERY ISSUE.
If you want to listen to some motivation (and learn some tricks for staying motivated) you won’t want to miss it.
How To Stay Motivated (The Fizzle Show #10) »
14. Now here’s the most important part.
Lock yourself in a room with the thing you need to be doing.
Don’t leave until you make some progress.
Put pen to paper, fingers to keyboard, or axe to the grindstone.
Stop looking for external motivation. Stop letting yourself procrastinate.
Start going through the motions of making progress. At first it might feel forced, but eventually you’ll get in the groove.
What to do if this doesn’t work.
We all have things to do that we really just don’t want to do, but have to for some reason. These are the toughest to find motivation for.
For these especially difficult situations, I recommend two things.
First, question whether or not this thing really needs to be done.
What are the consequences of not doing it? Can you live with the consequences? Is there any way to not do this thing?
Then, if you still conclude that this thing absolutely has to get done, focus on simply getting past it.
Imagine the relief of not having this thing on your plate anymore.
How will that make you feel?
Dig deep. See how quickly you can possibly do this thing.
Do it now and move on to stuff you really want to do.
Bonus tip for creative entrepreneurs and online business builders
If you need an ongoing kick in the pants to focus your energy on building a business or becoming a successful freelancer, we have a brand new podcast just for you called The Fizzle Show.
Check out our new podcast for creative entrepreneurs and online business builders »
Thanks for reading. Now go out and get something important done.
Please share this with someone else who needs motivation.
In the comments below, share your other favorite motivation hacks and tell me what this post helped you achieve.
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The Top 10 Mistakes in Online Business
Every week we talk with entrepreneurs. We talk about what’s working and what isn’t. We talk about successes and failures. We spend time with complete newbies, seasoned veterans, and everything in between.
One topic that comes up over and over again with both groups is mistakes made in starting businesses. Newbies love to learn about mistakes so they can avoid them. Veterans love to talk about what they wish they had known when starting out.
These conversations have been fascinating, so we compiled a list of the 10 mistakes we hear most often into a nifty lil' guide. Get the 10 Most Common Mistakes in Starting an Online Business here »