The festive season is a time where we generally come together.  December calendars are filled with meet-ups, catching up with old friends, family gatherings and staff events. All of which may lead us to have higher levels of energy and motivation.

Fast-forward a couple of weeks and it’s suddenly January. You’re back to your old routine and wondering how all that positive energy you had a week ago can be channelled into your upcoming exams!

Even though we all have individual preferences that may keep us motivated, here are some useful tips we can all refer back to when energy and motivation seem to be running low.

  • Re-introduce healthy choices. It’s normal to indulge over the Christmas period, but when it’s over, you might not feel too pleased with yourself.  Don’t stress! Slowly start getting back to eating healthy foods and keep yourself hydrated. Also, try and keep up a regular exercise regime, even if it’s a short home workout, as this will boost your mood by increasing your serotonin and dopamine levels. These small, regular changes will eventually turn into effortless behaviours that will leave you feeling more energised and motivated all year round.
  • Set goals which get your excitement levels up! It’s undeniable that some mundane tasks need to get done, so make sure to plan some goals and activities for after exams that light that spark inside of you and keep you motivated when things get tough.
  • Surround yourself with people who are enthusiastic. Take a moment and truthfully think about whether the people you are surrounding yourself with are draining your energy or fuelling your motivation. Being around people who are goal oriented and enthusiastic will have a positive effect and as entrepreneur Marelisa Faberga puts it “enthusiasm is contagious”.  If you can’t seem to find such people in your current life, try listening to motivational content online by people who inspire you to help regain focus and motivation.
  • Sleep. No, I don’t mean all day! You might be used to sleeping late after some nights out these past weeks; try and go to bed a bit earlier each night to give you a boost and help you focus on your studies well into the evening.
  • Make a plan. Create a list of all that you need to get done and create realistic deadlines for you to meet. A good way to help ensure you stick to your deadlines is noting down what consequences there might be if you don’t. Will you have to miss out on an event you’ve been eyeing? Will you be letting down yourself or others by putting off your work?

Michaela Pace is a Psychology graduate from the University of Malta. She has worked with children and adolescents within the social sector and currently works as a Triage Officer and Chat Bar Coordinator within Willingness Team. Michaela aims to further her studies locally by pursuing a Masters in Gestalt Psychotherapy in the near future.