5 Little Victories That Will Give You a Happy Glow When Studying
The Harvard Business school recently discovered what’s called the “progress of principles” or the small wins theory – the most important thing when working is to be making continuous, notable progress. Here are a few mood-boosting wins to help you stay motivated while studying.
So what exactly are small wins?
Small victories are the little things that are happening in our lives that we don’t always recognise as being successful because we’re focused on big wins rather than little wins. Teresa Amabile of the Harvard Business school found that productivity increases when we recognise and track achievements on a daily basis, and that the psychology of small wins. You’ll feel better and therefore work better if you recognise the importance of little wins.
1. Did you set some small goals for the day?
Congrats! This means that you’ve already set yourself up with a little win – you’ve gotten organised for the day. Bonus points if you wrote it in a diary entry or notebook. This sets you up in your day to day life to avoid all those little annoyances. If you know you want to visit someone at the hospital, you know you’ll need change for the car park and can avoid a parking ticket. By setting out what you want to achieve with the day you can schedule more efficiently and get more study done, as well as working better by avoiding the little problems that get in the way of clear-headed study.
2. Did you pull up your duvet cover and plump your cushions to make your bed?
Studies show that making your bed in morning help you feel like you’re starting the day right, and gives you a good mood to carry throughout the day. If you’ve already made your bed, you’re on your way to a day filled with that constant glass half full feeling.
3. Have you got a playlist ready to go, filled with favourite songs?
Music can be a brilliant way to block out distractions, and if you’ve got a favourite playlist with your most motivational music set up, you provide yourself with the perfect work environment to get study and assignments done. Music can help you by stopping little distractions that lead to big distractions like online games or social media.
4. You’ve gotten closer to achieving long-term goals
No matter how much study you’ve actually achieved today, whether it was just answering an important email or two or doing an entire assignment, whatever you’ve done it’s helped you get closer to your larger scale goals. Sometimes it’s easy to feel miserable because you haven’t learned a new skill or finished your course, but remember that everything you’re doing gets you a little bit closer!
5. You’ve earned some downtime
If you’ve had a long day of studying and you’re not feeling the small victories, here’s a big one – you’ve earned your rest! Good performance makes your brain tired – it’s why we can’t study or work for hours and hours at a time. This means that, not only will you sleep well, but you’ll also have more time to enjoy the good weather and fun moments… or curling up in bed with Netflix and a few chocolate bars. You can rest easy knowing that you’ve done some work.
How to celebrate little wins:
Find out what makes you happy but doesn’t reduce productivity. You may love going out until 3am with your friends, but that’s going to knock you out for the next day, and you probably won’t get much done. Plus, little wins call for little rewards. Instead of having a big night out, head to the bus stop with exact change for your favourite hot chocolate from down the road, or to the local pub with a friend for a parma. Alternatively, stay home and have a few happiness top ups in the form of a few chapters of your favourite book or watch a movie.
However, you celebrate and whatever you’re trying to achieve setting yourself small goals that allow you to get that happy glow is one of the best ways you can motivate yourself.
Reward yourself for the small wins, take time to reflect on them and relax, and watch your productivity flow!
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