How do I stay motivated? BklTYr4

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PostSubject: How do I stay motivated?   How do I stay motivated? EmptyMon Sep 23, 2013 10:37 pm

For more than a year now, I've been spending much of my days laying in bed all day either watching TV, playing video games or (this is the main issue) browsing the internet on the laptop. I never thought of this as a problem at first, but soon it started to have a negative impact on my education, my daily life, and my self-esteem.

13 months ago, I began attending college, and this wasn't much of an issue at first, but as the weeks went by and the work started to pile up, my willingness to work started to go down as the year went by, and as a result, I had to drop out and wait all the way until early this month to start all over at a 2-year college.

The issue extends itself to home as well. It's now normal for me to go long periods of time without food, water or breaths of fresh air. Not only that, but there are very little days in which I actually wash up, and I spend most of my nights on my laptop, sometimes until around or after the sun rises.

My failure to meet the high standards of college education, and frequently being called out by my peers about my overall unreliability, has really made me start to think poorly of myself. I lack the motivation to push myself to do better, but at the same time, not doing anything of value for a while can make me feel worthless, which is anything but fun.

At this rate, I really don't know what to do about this. I've been visiting a therapist for almost a year about this, but that hasn't pushed me to do better. It helped me acknowledge this issue and several ways to go about fixing it, but I still don't push myself enough to resolve it.

Is there any advice you guys can give to me that can help me push myself to be more productive? To me, there's no worse feeling out there than feeling useless, and I REALLY want to get this issue resolved, lest I screw myself over and kiss my hope for a successful future goodbye.
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Smash King
Smash King
Smash King


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PostSubject: Re: How do I stay motivated?   How do I stay motivated? EmptyMon Sep 23, 2013 10:48 pm

The way I see it, you need to try and build self-discipline. Don't wait forever to find something to motivate you cause its not gonna come knocking at the door for you. Since you acknowledge that your lack of motivation is harming your future, use that alone as a motive. No matter how depressed or lazy you feel, do what you have to do that is important. In other words, don't rely on motivation to push you forward, force yourself to do it if you know its right.
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PostSubject: Re: How do I stay motivated?   How do I stay motivated? EmptyTue Sep 24, 2013 2:23 am

First of all, if your therapist isn't helping you, find a different one. It's the therapist's job to help you, and if you don't feel like you've had the help you need after a whole year, it's time to seek help elsewhere.

SK's reply is very good, I'd recommend listening to his advice.

However, I also think that your problem might extend deep into a psychological area, in which case it's as crippling as an addiction or personality disorder, and you will need external help. Again, a therapist who you trust and will help you is the easy way through this. If that's not a realistic option (and there are tons of reasons why it wouldn't be), try going out of your way to force yourself to do things.

By this I mean taking things to the extreme, such as finding a safe or small room and locking up your computer inside it, then putting the key at the other side of the house. Do this many, many times, for all the little things that get you distracted. It sounds superficial and useless at first, but it's the little things that ultimately affect your motivation. Think about all the times you were about to go outside, but then couldn't find your shoes or coat or something and just went, "Ah, fuck it." Little inconveniences always deter people from doing important stuff, and this extends to things as drastic as suicide; if I had been living in a household with a gun within easy reach during my suicidal phase several years ago, I almost certainly wouldn't be here today. More importantly, this is the case for everyone in the entire world; it's human nature for little inconveniences to stop a massive project.

And once you know about that, use that against yourself. Take some time out to put all your games and computers and stuff in some difficult-to-reach place, and put all your books and stuff right next to you.

Another thing is that you will find that you get into stuff much more quickly if you're doing it already. That's why you can spend huge amounts of time on the internet; you're already doing it, and you don't feel like quitting any time soon. Strange as it may seem that applies to reading and studying too. Starting to read or study is the hard part, but keep telling yourself that once you're in there you'll be on a roll.

The most dangerous thing to tell yourself is "I'll do that later". This is probably obvious to you; it ends up with you postponing things on and on, and you pretty much never even do them. Part of the problem is that human beings suck at thinking about the future. The human brain doesn't consider the future you to be the same person as the present you, and that's where this procrastination issue comes from. Everyone always feels like they will be better-equipped to handle the task at hand in the future, when in reality they will be at the same level, if not worse.

I don't know of any sure-fire ways to fix this, but I have an idea. Try sticking post-it notes around the house for things that you need to do. Say, if you need to wash yourself, put a post-it note by your basin or shower, and if you need to study, put a post-it note next to your book. If necessary, put a pen or pencil there as well. Then, every time you decide to postpone doing something, just make a mark on that post-it note. Every time you actually get it done, remove the post-it note and replace it with a clean one. Even if while reading this now you feel like you won't waste time, it's a different story when you actually approach whatever you need to do.

The idea behind this is that while it feels like a great effort to wash dishes or wash clothes or whatever, making a mark on a post-it note is absolutely not. You just have to look at the post-it note, pick up the pencil and draw a line on it. When you're lazing around being bored and not in the state of mind that caused you to make that thoughtful post above, you will have the potential to feel like just postponing whatever you need to do. The main point of the post-it note system is of course that eventually, if you've been that lazy, you'll see a post-it note with ten or more marks on it, and it'll dawn on you just how bad it's been. This should, in a sense, "snap you out of" your lazy state and put you in the aforementioned state of mind, and you'll get up and do things.

Good luck.
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Perfect Hell

Perfect Hell


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PostSubject: Re: How do I stay motivated?   How do I stay motivated? EmptyTue Sep 24, 2013 2:11 pm

Well, Dry pretty much covered it all.  I'll add to that by saying you should keep yourself goal-oriented.  Know what you want to get done in a particular day, and focus on those.  Everything from small goals like doing a homework assignment or your dishes, to finding a job, to getting a good GPA, all the way up to your career path.  Start with the small stuff, and keep yourself busy.  Give yourself deadlines.  Use planners to keep track of things and kick yourself into gear.  Don't let yourself get distracted by a computer until you've checked off the important things first.  Don't even look at one until you're done with everything else.

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