Second Semester Motivation

De-stress your life with these tips and tricks


A blue graphic featuring the word ‘motivation.’

As we enter the third quarter, many students are finding themselves stressed and anxious for the second semester of the year. All sorts of final exams are approaching, and it is often overwhelming having to deal with such academic stress. Here are some tips to keep students going in the second semester, while still remaining strong.

Invest in time for yourself

It can be very hard to focus on anything but homework and sleep during the school year, but mental and physical health only come when a person is able to focus on other things in their life. Try and get at least 8 hours of sleep every night – do not purposefully stay up late if you don’t need to! You can’t do well in school if you don’t sleep, and you can’t sleep if you don’t do your homework!

You should also try your best to take some time to just chill out. Often, our brains just need a little bit of time to decompress. Taking a little bit of time off from your day can make you more productive and more willing to do your work! It is also very important in preserving your relationships with your family and friends, to take some time out of your day and spend time with those that you love. It will make your life significantly easier and more enjoyable.

Don’t fall behind on homework

Some of the biggest stress is induced by homework, and that stress multiplies so much when you are behind! If you are having trouble doing your homework, form a study group or keep track of everything that you need to get done. You can invest in a journal for yourself, or you can download an app that helps you keep track of all of your upcoming assignments.

Take a weekend to get caught up – even on assignments that aren’t due immediately. It will make your life easier and give you less to worry about in the future.

Find a new hobby!

Finding a new hobby can be such a rewarding experience. Often people find they are so overwhelmed with school work and life issues, they have a hard time focusing on anything else. Finding a hobby like painting, drawing, reading, or even things like knitting can relieve so much of that pressure to focus on something you really enjoy. Take the time to explore in your free time! It’s so much more fun than you would think.

Keep a Journal

Journaling is a wonderful way to keep your thoughts organized and your days planned. When you journal, you are effectively able to express yourself without judgement from others. You can write about your day, list your homework and tasks you have to get done, or just write down random thoughts and ideas in your head! You can even draw or write things in it – it’s a fantastic way to de-stress and be creative.

Practice mindfulness

One of the biggest tips you’ll hear from anyone with experience handling anxiety and stress is to practice mindfulness. This can be anything from meditating for five minutes to 30 minutes, or doing exercises such as counting to 50 backwards and forwards. These mental exercises help ground you as a person, and can significantly relieve stress from your person.

Here is an article diving deeper into the practice and its process.

Do good things for yourself and others

Sometimes we just need a little bit of kindness in our life. Try doing small things for others to make them happy, you might find that it will make you happier yourself. If a friend’s birthday is approaching, buy them chocolate or flowers. If someone is having a rough day, offer them support and comfort. Often we want these things to happen to us, so why not do it unto others? This is a very positive and healthy way of spreading happiness and motivation among others and yourself.

Keep a positive mindset

Sometimes, all we can do is try to alter the way we think about things. Many think keeping a positive mindset is about being bubbly and happy all the time, but in truth, keeping a positive mindset just means keeping yourself grounded. Try and identify your most negative thoughts, are these constructive? Most likely not. Try and flip these thoughts around. Instead of saying “I’m going to fail this test, oh my gosh,” say instead, “I’m going to do my best on this test, and accept the score I will get.” False positivity does not work, but shifting your thinking processes can have a very helpful impact in the long run. It can also prevent you from spiraling into a state of negativity, and preventing yourself from getting there is often the key to productivity and success.