4 Tips to Stay Motivated as a College Student

By Ankita Upadhyay on August 31, 2017

It is not uncommon for college students to lose motivation at some point in their academic careers. Lack of motivation can be attributed to stress, feeling overwhelmed, or just having so much to do you resort to doing nothing at all. If this sounds like something you may have experienced, don’t worry, you are not alone. Get back in the hang of things and take control of your life by following these tips!

1. Find inspiration

Find role models. Of course, successful celebrity entrepreneurs such as Mark Zuckerberg or Warren Buffet are great figures to look up to, but it may work in your best interest to start smaller and closer. For instance, find inspiration from someone in your school or someone you knew in high school who seems to know exactly what they are doing with their lives.


Every time someone posts a milestone of their life on Facebook and various social media websites such as “__  just started working at ‘name of prestigious company,’” my first instinct is to find out more. How did they get there? What did they do in terms of attaining that position?

LinkedIn is a great networking website to find out more about that person’s accomplishments and journey. From there you can find links to their website and resume, which are useful to help you get started on your own career. Every time you feel a lack of motivation or just get lost in your path, refer back to these talented people and move forward from there.


2. Set goals

This is one of the most important things anyone, not just college students, should do when they find themselves lacking motivation. If you don’t already have a goal, find one, even if it’s temporary or small. As an emerging computer science major, my goal as of now is to intern at a startup. Of course, I want to work at a prestigious, renowned company like Apple or Facebook one day, but I find that it is best for me to focus on a smaller, more probable goal. After (hopefully) achieving this goal, I will set tougher goals and challenge myself even more.

3. Stay focused on those goals

After setting goals, make sure to recall them whenever you feel less motivated. Students often forget the bigger picture and longterm goals when completing a tedious homework assignment or studying for an exam.

What’s the point of knowing how to row reduce this matrix or identify the time period in which this sculpture was made? Well, it’s to pass that class so you can come closer to achieving your goals … or even just graduating (also a viable goal). A key way to stay focused is to reiterate your goals, whether you do so through writing or verbally.

Whether it be in the shower, while driving, or just in your room, repeat these goals three to five times out loud. Saying things out loud really helps ingrain them into your mind, similar to how rewriting notes helps you retain knowledge. You can even make a mp3 file or podcast of you repeating your goals and listen to it at the gym, while eating, walking to class, etc.

4. Ted Talks

Listening to Ted Talks is another form of gaining inspiration. Instead of your usual Netflix session, try watching a Ted Talk video on motivation.

Specific Ted Talks I found helpful include: The psychology of self-motivation | Scott Geller | TEDxVirginiaTech and Programming your mind for success | Carrie Green | TEDxManchester. These 15-minute segments will have you motivated, pumped, and ready to follow your endeavors.

By Ankita Upadhyay

Uloop Writer
Hey everyone! I'm Ankita, and I'm a computer science major at UCSC. I love writing, reading, coding, jogging, hiking, and simply just being out in the nature. I'm excited to write articles here at Uloop and hope that many college students will be able to relate to them!

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