Lots of students come to university highly motivated to perform to a high standard and be successful. Which is a great goal, but maintaining that high levels of motivation can be tough. Your short and long term goals may change during your time at university, which is okay. Students often find motivation by creating goals and determining how you will be benefit from your studies or current situation in the future.  However, that can also be overwhelming, or you may feel like you will fail. In the moments when it is overwhelming or something feels unattainable it is important to acknowledge those feels, and take a step back.

We encourage students to frame challenges such as being stuck with course work, struggling to complete a deadline or not understanding a tutorial sheet as they cannot do it yet.  Just because something is challenging in the moment does not mean that can't change in the future. “I don’t understand this essay topic yet– what steps can you take to understand it?

Here are some tips on staying motivated;

  • Set yourself one specific, achievable goal. You can do this by using the SMART goals framework.
    • Specific (simple, sensible, significant).
    • Measurable (meaningful, motivating).
    • Achievable (agreed, attainable).
    • Relevant (reasonable, realistic and resourced, results-based).
    • Time bound (time-based, time limited, time/cost limited, timely, time-sensitive).
  • Think about how to include that goal in your life, what you need do to make it happen, and then put a timeframe on it (such as a week).
  • Break your goal into small, easy tasks and set regular reminders.
  • Use your family and friends as support – tell them about your goals and encourage them to help keep you motivated.

What support do we offer? 

Student Services has a range of support to help you if you are feeling de-motivated. Our Wellbeing and Coaching team can help with finding strategies for managing motivation, and our counselling and mental health team can help if your difficulties with motivation go alongside other mental health difficulties. You can find our latest workshops and group sessions for motivation on our Instagram. You can book an appointment to speak to a member of staff or email for advice. 

Alternative Internal Support

You can access self-help through various University channels such as:

  • ShelfHelp, which provides eBooks or physical copies which can help you with your motivation

External Support

If you would like to access some self-help materials here are a list of alternative support resources.