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Wellness > Mental Health

Avoiding Burnout? Try These 5 Remedies to Stay Motivated!

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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at U Mass Amherst chapter.

It’s that time of the year where the weather is starting to get cooler, days are getting shorter, and burnout is lingering more than ever. Not being able to go outdoors and be able to touch some grass creates panic. It takes everything in you to avoid getting in this rut of not wanting to be productive, especially on weekends when class isn’t in session. Here are my five favorite remedies to stay motivated that have helped me avoid burnout!

waking up early

While it may be tempting to stay cozy in bed for longer in the mornings, something that has really helped me this semester is making it a habit to wake up early (yes…even on weekends). As soon as that alarm goes off, I instantly get out of my bed, making it impossible to rot. A benefit to waking up early is that you get so much more done. You have the entire day ahead of you! I love to make breakfast right away, as it is the most important meal of the day, as well as read the news on my phone or pick up a good book. I instantly feel energized after my meal and ready to take on the day. After breakfast, I have to make my bed as I am a firm believer that it sets the tone for the rest of the day. Once I have a nice and tidy bedroom, I make it a point to avoid going back there until I am ready to wind down for the day. I find myself being more productive if I do work outside of my room. This way, I have a boundary that my room is a relaxation space and not a work space. Wow! This small task of just simply waking up early has already come to an extremely productive morning!

go to the gym

Continuing with an early start to your day, going to the gym in the morning is a great way to put yourself in a motivated mindset. Not only is the gym more empty in the morning, but it sets a mentality of how productive I am capable of being in a day. The environment of the gym is perfect for avoiding burnout because you can do the simplest workout, such as going on the treadmill for ten minutes, and still feel extremely energized and productive. Why? It is due to the fact that you made it out of the house and to the gym — that alone is something you should be extremely proud of!

be in a clean environment

If I could recommend only one thing that can instantly make you want to be motivated, I would 100% suggest that cleaning can help you get there. Whenever I am feeling unmotivated, but I want to do a small and easy task to get into that mindset, I clean! It is so simple yet extremely effective. It can be as small as cleaning a workspace, organizing a drawer, or if you live in a house, putting the dishes away! After I finish cleaning, I find myself getting twice the amount of work I need to get done, as I want to stay in that motivated cycle. It may seem like a silly task however, not only will you be doing an important task that usually gets pushed aside, but you also get a clean living environment! That is what I like to call “killing two birds with one stone“!

read 30 minutes daily

As I mentioned briefly in my “waking up early” segment, reading 30 minutes daily is something I think everyone should do, whether avoiding burnout or not. I started consistently doing this over the summer and have felt so much more satisfied with my day because of it. It is so easy to choose a book of you’re interested in and just read it for fun! It always makes me feel like I have checked a huge task off my list, and what better way to get in a productive mentality than to read a book!

make an “everything to-do list”

This may sound silly, however, an everything to-do list is one of the easiest ways to avoid the stress and lack of motivation. Whenever I feel overwhelmed and think that the tasks I have to do, I make an everything to-do list. When I mean everything, I really mean everything. Write down everything you need to do the moment you wake up. Write down things like making breakfast, showering, brushing your teeth, making your bed, reading — just whatever you need to get done. This sounds tedious, but it helps reduce stress because instead of having a to-do list in your head with all of your schoolwork and daily tasks, everything is now written down on a piece of paper. This helps you track what you need to do. There is something satisfying and rewarding that comes from physically crossing off a task from your list.

While these five remedies may seem simple and tedious, they are extremely effective. One thing that I always mistaken is that being motivated and productive doesn’t need to be only schoolwork and exams. What people sometimes fail to realize is that with those major assignments come the minor tasks that can be just as important to complete. Those are also typically the tasks that get pushed aside for months and contribute the most to a burnout. There are so many more remedies that you can do to reduce burnout however, these are my five favorites that help keep me motivated and productive.

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Sofia Giannakopoulos

U Mass Amherst '24

I'm a senior, legal studies major and political science minor at UMass Amherst. In my free time I enjoy writing, hanging out with friends, and reading a good book.