Tips to be prepared and motivated for a 9-5 day of study

Focus on your work. Source: Lonely Planet (via Unplash)

By Joanna Cunningham

As a History student without much contact time, I struggle to stay motivated. If you’re like me or, alternatively, you find difficulty in attending your 9-5 day of contact time, here are some tips to keep you motivated and healthy.

Use a planner

During the strikes last year, I really struggled to stay motivated. Therefore, this year, I purchased a daily schedule planner, so I can organise each day’s schedule and to-do list. If you have a day full of lectures, then you can schedule these in, and tick them off as you go. This positive ticking action can make you feel so accomplished.

For me, I plan my reading for the week ahead, and then distribute it evenly throughout the weekdays so, if I want Thursday off after a crazy Wednesday night, I can schedule this in. This has boosted my productivity tenfold, as I can organise my break times, removing the guilt of relaxing – it’s a much healthier way to study. By setting yourself realistic goals, and planning for any days off you need, your motivation and mindset will sky-rocket.

Maintain a regular sleep pattern

This is a difficult tip to follow at uni, as most of us love a good night out. However, if you have a day or week without plans, make sure to go to bed at a decent time (before midnight, or even earlier if you want), and set an alarm to wake up early. If you set your alarm to a song you love, you’ll feel even better in the morning.

Cook healthy bulk meals

Although cooking can be a relaxing pastime, it can often waste time. If you cook a big batch of healthy food, then you can get home after a long day, and simply reheat it. This will knock hours off cooking time from your weekly schedule.

Buy a reusable water bottle

Remaining hydrated can boost your energy levels, and keep your body functioning properly. If you’re someone like me, who struggles with regular water intake, you can invest in a plastic or glass reusable water bottle, sometimes with timings printed on the side, to ensure you stay motivated to drink water.

Pack your lunch the day before

If you often rush out the door each morning, you should pack a healthy meal to leave in the fridge overnight for the next day. Then, in the morning rush, you can simply grab it and go.

Schedule in morning “me time”

Alone time is so important to start the day in a positive manner. By planning your morning, you reduce the stress of leaving on time. I love watching TV whilst eating my breakfast, or doing my makeup as I’m still getting ready for the day, but ensuring to enjoy “me time” before the busy day ahead.

Staying motivated at uni is difficult when you have so many distractions, but if you follow even a couple of these suggestions, you will become a much more productive and organised person.


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