For better or for worse, it’s never too early to start thinking about the future. Your happy, comfortable retirement will most likely be dependent on success in your professional life, as it will earn you some degree of financial stability. And your professional life is very often predicated upon success in school.
Even though the idea of retiring is a long way off, it’s important to understand that staying motivated and doing well in school now will have consequences that reverberate long into the future. So if you require academic assistance, you need to spend time thinking about that now, rather than later and begin working smarter as soon as you can.
Do You Require Academic Assistance?
If you start taking your education seriously, you can create the pathways for a successful life early on. And a huge part of taking your education seriously is doing your homework, and doing it properly.
After all, your future boss will be sort of like a teacher. They will expect your input at meetings, and after them. They will need to know that you are reliable, and will expect you to finish the tasks you are assigned, with only yourself as your motivator. If you need to create a powerpoint deck and present them later, then your work “homework” will likely involve editing slides and making sure everything is prepared so you don’t look silly and unprepared in front of your colleagues later on.
You can start that now by holding yourself responsible for your academics. So stop procrastinating! Today is the time to study for tests, spend the time on papers and projects, memorize the materials needed, and do all your homework. Once you’re done, then you can enjoy some fresh air outside!
A Few Reasons Students Fail to Complete Homework
Students that find they are having trouble finding the motivation needed to do their homework, shouldn’t be too hard on themselves. Instead, they should be ready to first identify the issues preventing them from staying on task with school work. Later you can figure out ways to stay on task with your studies.
Here are a few reasons you may be off task with your homework.
1 – Time Management Problems
Often students find themselves in charge of their own schedules for the first time in their lives, and that can make it hard to plan when exactly to schedule in homework time.
Planning your days is indeed a skill that takes practice and that does not come naturally to all people. To plan home tasks effectively, meaning slotting in time for homework along with all the other non-scheduled parts of your life, is something to devote real time and thought to. One key here is knowing that proper management of your study time also involves taking breaks and taking care of physical needs like eating healthily, exercising, and resting.
Don’t let yourself get overwhelmed by how long the homework will take, instead make a plan that makes it work – more on that below.
2 – The Teacher Doesn’t Check the Homework
If your professor does not check to confirm that you and your fellow students are completing homework assignments, you may start to see each assignment as optional. This is the exact wrong approach, though.
In fact, when your teacher is not checking homework completion, he or she is trusting you and the other students to hold yourselves accountable. That means your homework assignments provide two chances for learning in one: a chance to learn a school lesson as well as a life lesson.
No good teacher assigns homework without feeling it has importance and validity, so don’t skip it just because you can get away with doing so – you’ll only hurt yourself in the long run.
3 – You Feel You Just Don’t Need the Homework
Maybe you are taking a class where things just come easily to you. You have an innate grasp for the material, you do well on tests and papers, and all the homework seems to do is take time, not hone your skills or add knowledge, eh? That’s no reason not to just get it done.
Even homework that’s easier for you will still serve to reinforce the material, help you avoid easy mistakes, and keep you sharp. Remember, even the most naturally skilled athletes still practice, the best musicians still rehearse, and accomplished writers churn out drafts and edit them time and again.
A Few Tips to Help You Stay on Top of Homework Assignments
So you are committed to getting your homework done, but you’re not quite sure how to change things up so you can stay on task and keep consistently completing it on time? Here are a few homework tips to mull over.
1 – Set Aside a Specific Time for Homework
You’re good about going to each class on your schedule, right? Not to mention showing up for the doctor’s appointment, lunch with a friend, or other event on your calendar, right? Treat homework just the same way: schedule a time, be it daily or a few times a week, that you can set aside to study, write, edit and proofread, and whatever else your assignments entail.
By making a specific homework time, it will seem less like an added burden and more like a routine part of life which, while you’re a student, it is. And remember, breaks from homework matter.
2 – Treat Homework the Same as Other Academic Tasks
You would never simply not show up for a test or not turn in a paper, but when it comes to homework, it can be a slippery slope if you allow it to be. But when you treat homework as simply one part of your larger school responsibilities, it’s easier to see it as a must do, not a should do.
3 – Take Advantage of Academic Assistance
Homework is the time you can afford to get it wrong, so to speak. Tests and papers and labs get grades that can impact your academic life overall, but when it comes to homework, making mistakes or not fully understanding concepts can be a great thing, not a problem.
That’s because you can learn where you need some additional support and instruction and you can use the resources your teacher or school offers in that regard. Don’t feel embarrassed to get help, feel empowered, because with help, you will develop into an ever more successful student.
4 – Find Like-Minded Students
Sometimes homework assignments are best completed alone with all your attention and focus on the work; at other times, working with other students is a great way for you to stay motivated and interested in the work. Forming a study group can help make homework more motivating and enjoyable, and your peers can offer knowledge and insight that helps you master material that’s a challenge for you, just as at times you can likely help others better grasp various academic concepts as well.
5 – Don’t Do Homework at Home
There are a myriad of reasons why doing homework literally at home can be a bad idea. If you live in a dorm or apartment with friends, the home space can be loud and filled with distractions. Even if your home space is quiet and calm, everything from chores to that Netflix account to your comfy bed can be an all-too-easy distraction from homework.
Find a place that sets you up for focus and success. That can be a school library or dedicated study hall space, a coffee shop or diner, your parent’s house, a park bench, or whatever works for you.
Set Goals for Your Academic Career to Keep Your Studies on Course
Motivation can be hard to come by when you think of it in terms like that: come by. Or find. And so on. Getting motivated is not something that just happens, it’s a choice you make. You don’t find motivation, you create it.
And the first step toward creating motivation is the creation of goals that will help inform your academic practices. Goals are not hopes or dreams or aspirations, they are specific, logical targets you set yourself up to accomplish through diligence, focus, and, of course, motivation.
Setting goals sets you up for success – this is as true in your academic life as it is for working professionals, for athletes, for artists, and so on. A businessman may set a target goal for the amount of increased revenue he hopes to generate for his company in a given quarter and then dive deep into the data that will help him plan how to do it. An athlete may plan to shave an entire second off her 400-meter dash within a three-month timeframe and will make a training plan that will work incrementally toward her speed goal. An author may commit to writing at least 5,000 words of fiction daily in order to complete a draft of a novel in a six-week timeframe.
All of these goals may sound lofty when glimpsed without an appreciation for the focus and the logical process each of these individuals can use, but with planning and motivation, more earnings, faster speeds, and finished novels are not lofty aspirations but smart goals.
Setting SMART Goals is a Pretty Smart Thing to Do
And when you work toward smart goals, as many successful people do, your chances of achieving academic success are much greater. Just remember that a “smart goal” is not to say an intelligent or clever one, but a “S.M.A.R.T.” goal, with SMART serving as an acronym for the words Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Bound.
Think on each of those terms a bit as you formulate a plan for prepping for that final exam, plotting out that term paper, or ensuring you break down study of a large, dense topic into a manageable form and the final results will almost assuredly be good grades and better mastery of the material, and that’s indeed called academic success.
Looking at the Big Picture Can Help You Stay Motivated
When you are in the middle of the school year, it can seem never-ending and exhausting. And that’s to say nothing of being in the middle of the school career. Maybe you start with a year of preschool, so that’s 14 years of education just to get you to high school graduation.
Add in a four-year college degree and that’s 18 years in school. A two-year master’s program? Three years of law school, maybe four in a medical program? You may be facing some 22 years of education, and with those years comes a lot of homework.
But your school years will end. And provided you remain in good health you will spend a good three times more years of your life without homework as a part of your days. The hard work you do while in school will have a direct impact on the whole of your life, a life that’s largely to be spent beyond the bounds of academic responsibilities.
So stick with it, stay motivated and on task, and one day you’ll find yourself enjoying the benefits of your efforts instead of bemoaning the tasks.