Making the decision to go to college can be a big step, not to mention the willpower and determination it takes to follow through with the plan. Once those book fees are added up and the test-filled syllabi have been handed out, second guessing begins to creep in. Am I making the right decision? How will I know a degree will help me get ahead in life? Do I have the time to commit to this? Yes, yes and yes. Before you backtrack on your future, we’ve got three (maybe four) ways to help you stay motivated, keeping your eyes on the prize.
Analyze Your Progress
One of the best ways of sticking to a commitment is to see how far you’ve come. Think about your hobbies. From woodworking and poetry to painting and photography, chances are you’ve made a lot of progress in your skillset over time. This same principle applies to your college education. When you start doubting the worth of your degree and are struggling to stay motivated, just pull out the earliest tests and research papers and compare them to more recent ones. Chances are, you’ll notice you’re leaps and bounds ahead of where you started.
Ever heard of the phrase “it takes a village”? While it’s most commonly attributed to raising a child, in this case, it can apply to making it through each quarter. The college environment can be a little intimidating at times – everything is brand new and the expectations from faculty and staff are pretty high. Take advantage of work study groups, campus clubs and other opportunities to find people in the same situation you’re in. You’d be surprised how quickly those college years pass when you’ve got a “village” of classmates helping you out along the way.
Keep Reaching Goals
When you think of the main goal of your education as earning a degree, you’re likely to feel overwhelmed at some point. In order to stay motivated and positive, set small goals along the way to earning that degree. For example, if you’re in the Bachelor of Business Administration – Marketing program, you may set the goal of learning all about social media marketing or how to develop a marketing strategy during the quarter. By breaking down the big picture into more attainable milestones, you’ll experience that sweet taste of success sooner and more often.
Bonus: Envision Your Graduation
We’re throwing in this small trick because it could help put your college years into perspective.
Have you ever procrastinated a task and thought “well, if I would have done_____ when I was supposed to, I would have been finished by now.” Take that same thought and apply it to graduation. It’s really not as crazy as it sounds. You will be doing something in 2-4 years. Whether you’re looking back saying “well, I could have graduated by now,” or “I reached my goal and it didn’t take that long” will be up to you.
Everyone at some point or another needs a little boost and encouragement to stay motivated. It’s important to resist the temptation of giving into current fears and anxiety and focus instead on the future and achieving long-term success. With the help of these tips, you may be walking across that stage dressed in cap and gown in no time.
The team at South College Career Services is available to discuss your goals and career path. Don’t hesitate to reach out if you need some guidance.