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Linguaholic

How do you motivate yourself to study in tough times?


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We've all had those moments in which you don't have money and really need them, you broke up with someone, you got in some other fight, or you got really sick the day before important exam...basically, things are happening and you are trying to deal with them.

Do you try to go through your regular schedule still? Find some minutes to study your languages even if you aren't graded on them?

Or do you leave aside everything that you can leave until you solve the bigger problems you have.

I tend to stop doing other things, any things that I don't have to necessarily do, and since the bigger problems don't always get solved in a day, I get behind in things. Any suggestions on how to do that?

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It is a very hard thing to do. Self motivation is one those things that require a calendar just like anything else. We tend to get distracted with other life events that are also important.

To me learning is as important as anything else. I do most of it early in the morning or late at night.

Early in the morning, there is nothing else that I can do, so I sacrifice sleep to get it done.

Late at night, I am done with anything I can possibly get done, so I have a mind free of preoccupations. Not that they go away, but what can I do about it at that point.

Learning to me is my alone, self renewing time. It helps me forget about the things that will always be there.

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It is a very hard thing to do. Self motivation is one those things that require a calendar just like anything else. We tend to get distracted with other life events that are also important.

To me learning is as important as anything else. I do most of it early in the morning or late at night.

Early in the morning, there is nothing else that I can do, so I sacrifice sleep to get it done.

Late at night, I am done with anything I can possibly get done, so I have a mind free of preoccupations. Not that they go away, but what can I do about it at that point.

Learning to me is my alone, self renewing time. It helps me forget about the things that will always be there.

It used to be like that for me too. As well as to remind me that there is a bigger world than my problems somewhere out there. And then I got into much harder period, and I forgot all that. Though I was practically thinking of my problems day and night, which wasn't particularly healthy either.

May be I will give it a shot again now. Getting up earlier won't happen, but may be right before bed there can be a little time.

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I think that learning can have a therapeutic effect when you are going through some tough times, sometimes when I feel down I just read a book or practice a skill I'm learning to take my mind off the problem for a while. I know that running away from your problems is not the best approach but for those really hard times it's good to forget everything else and do something productive that you enjoy. When the study session is over, I'm motivated to tackle any problem. (at least for a while...)

I call it a "learning high"  :grin:

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When I was in college it was awful, I could never stay motivated.  My biggest problem was that everything came very easy to me (I know, complaining about the wrong thing, right?), which lead me to not being prepared for the really difficult classes I eventually had (since I did not build the correct foundations).

In my second BS, though, I am studying a lot of stuff I find interesting and challenging.  I think that is key for me, it has to hold my interest, and has to challenge me, or it will not win out against procrastination.

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I'm not good at this at all, to be honest I'm struggling really bad right now trying to learn dutch!  I get carried away by the circumstances and I just stop trying.  I don't have time for this right now, but hopely soon I'll find another job that leaves me with some extra time to do what I enjoy doing ;)

I guess my main motivation to study is the fact I really need to learn dutch, because I will be moving there soon.  I'm actually going to be traveling to that place quite soon... in just a few weeks!  Pretty nervious! 

But if I have to study during really tough times (ie, I have time, but something bad just happened), then there is nothing that can really motivate me. Like when they gave me a really bad diagnosis some years ago :(

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  • 2 weeks later...

I think that learning can have a therapeutic effect when you are going through some tough times, sometimes when I feel down I just read a book or practice a skill I'm learning to take my mind off the problem for a while. I know that running away from your problems is not the best approach but for those really hard times it's good to forget everything else and do something productive that you enjoy. When the study session is over, I'm motivated to tackle any problem. (at least for a while...)

I call it a "learning high"  :grin:

I was like that...

But that can happen when I have problems that I consider big...but that can be left for a moment...And then there are problems that seem so huge my brain keeps constantly trying to find a solution, and then escaping into anything, including language, isn't happening.

But I am working on it, trying, hopefully soon I'll master that again.

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I was like that...

But that can happen when I have problems that I consider big...but that can be left for a moment...And then there are problems that seem so huge my brain keeps constantly trying to find a solution, and then escaping into anything, including language, isn't happening.

But I am working on it, trying, hopefully soon I'll master that again.

Writing those problems on a piece of paper usually helps, just write them down, you don't need to come up with a solution yet. If you write them down it will give your mind some peace and your mind won't drift to those problems as often.

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If it is not something I am graded on I would leave it. I tried to learn Russian before and everything was going fine until finals came and them I left it and never got back to it. I am not sure what you are learning, but for me Russian was something I was learning for fun and I thought to myself, Russian would never help me get a job or anything and so I stopped learning it. If it is something important to you then I suggest keep going. I used to study a little before I went to bed and then a little before school.

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If it is not something I am graded on I would leave it. I tried to learn Russian before and everything was going fine until finals came and them I left it and never got back to it.

This is a problem for me too. I studied most of my Japanese at university, so looming deadlines and exams kept me motivated to study the required material and keep on improving. Nowadays, I am motivated by a goal to become an interpreter and keep in touch with all my friends in Japan, but the lack of real deadlines and the like right now makes things difficult. I'm happy to read a book once I've started, but picking it up in the first place is often a challenge.

I'm also studying Swedish, motivated by love (cue "naww"), but am yet to reach the point where it actually gets hard to keep going. The next time I'll have much of a chance to really use it will be probably next year some time, by which time I'll be back to full-time Japanese study, so here's hoping I can speak any Swedish by that point...

To answer the question of the post: I try to remember why it is that I'm learning the language, and if there's an actual reason other than "I thought it would be cool", then it helps. It's why Japanese and Swedish are languages I've been able to continue with for longer than a few weeks, because I have good reasons for why I want to study them.

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I don't need motivation because studying or focusing on reading gets my mind off things. I tend to forget my problems when I study my languages. I guess wanting to forget even for a while is large enough motivation for me to pick up my books.

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I have seen what happens to people when they allow problems to overwhelm them so inspite of my circumstances I always try to remain focused on the task ahead. Studying or just reading is a way for me to take my mind off whatever it may be for a while :cool:. Going for a jog or a walk is also a good way too.

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If it is not something I am graded on I would leave it. I tried to learn Russian before and everything was going fine until finals came and them I left it and never got back to it. I am not sure what you are learning, but for me Russian was something I was learning for fun and I thought to myself, Russian would never help me get a job or anything and so I stopped learning it. If it is something important to you then I suggest keep going. I used to study a little before I went to bed and then a little before school.

Good advice, thank you. Well, I moved to Serbia for my partner. I'm trying to study Spanish and Serbian at this moment. Spanish, because I love it and want to travel to Spain often. Serbian because I live here. But while I was settling here (the first 6 months) that wasn't a good enough motivation. My partner and I get along in English, the friends I do know know English...I work online (I need money and it's faster starting work online right away here instead of waiting months to learn proper fluent Serbian) and so on...BUT now I have been here for a while, and met some people, but not that many because of my language. I would like not to be restricted in socializing. I have been trying for the past week, no matter what happens, to leave time to learn few words in Serbian here and there...it's not much, but it's better than nothing, right?

I don't need motivation because studying or focusing on reading gets my mind off things. I tend to forget my problems when I study my languages. I guess wanting to forget even for a while is large enough motivation for me to pick up my books.

It was like that for me too until I got really stuck in problems that seemed life-threatening. And now I worry constantly, so forgetting doesn't seem like a safe thing to do. Though I guess I will find better solution if I have proper relaxation.

I have seen what happens to people when they allow problems to overwhelm them so inspite of my circumstances I always try to remain focused on the task ahead. Studying or just reading is a way for me to take my mind off whatever it may be for a while :cool:. Going for a jog or a walk is also a good way too.

Fully agree. I guess I did allow circumstances to distract me for a while. I have been studying for the past week though, even for a tiny bit here and there. I even started reading my English grammar and style books again, to improve my English some more.

Writing those problems on a piece of paper usually helps, just write them down, you don't need to come up with a solution yet. If you write them down it will give your mind some peace and your mind won't drift to those problems as often.

I'll try that. I did that once or twice and it was somewhat helpful, although tiring. I guess I do need to vent it out somewhere to refresh my brain so I can solve problems better.

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I try and find someone to talk to (if possible a pretty girl haha). I find my motivation wanes when i'm doing grammar or going through a text book. Speaking to someone really revitalises my efforts, even when my speaking is still quite basic.

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Sometimes it's just better to clear the head. If I am having issues, I'll try to break with my routine and if in my routine it is studying languages I can for example go and study to a different location, by the beach or in a forest and I manage to get my mind out of my issues and still get the study done.  :wink:

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I don't need motivation because studying or focusing on reading gets my mind off things. I tend to forget my problems when I study my languages. I guess wanting to forget even for a while is large enough motivation for me to pick up my books.

I get really tired of studying and always having to be at a class and juggling school and work becomes very tiresome and hectic. The demand is very challenging

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I think it's important also to recognize that there are sometimes occasions when it really is best just to have a day off, rather than push yourself too hard. When you are ill for example there is no point straining yourself even harder when no real progress is going to be made.

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I don't really not like to study. What mainly motivates me to study is how I will just be able to fluently talk in that language soon, and that gets me really excited.

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It used to be like that for me too. As well as to remind me that there is a bigger world than my problems somewhere out there. And then I got into much harder period, and I forgot all that. Though I was practically thinking of my problems day and night, which wasn't particularly healthy either.

May be I will give it a shot again now. Getting up earlier won't happen, but may be right before bed there can be a little time.

Studying is hard work and challenging, exercising and developing the brain is not easy and this is why it is hard to get work done. For me when tough times comes I do things that excites me. Listening to

music puts me in a positive frame of mine. I set targets and rewards, I also set myself  a reasonable amount of work  for the day and try to get it done as quickly as possible. Exercise is the best antidote for ever aspect of your life. Regular exercise stimulates positive chemical in your brain and this helps to build positive action, concentration and motivation.

 

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I usually sort my problems from the most important and the most urgent ones at the top of my priority list and those that could be stalled to my low priority list. It's a matter of time management for these sorts of problems and if I focus well and do the important tasks first, I can easily resolve all the things that I left hanging.

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