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It's tough to stay motivated in school

Nicolas Perales

As students, we tend to lose our motivation to do everyday tasks like simply paying attention in class. There were plenty of things that caused me to lose motivation in life. Sports, college applications, parental expectations, schoolwork, social life, worrying about my future; all these things made me feel like staying in the comfort of my bed every morning.

The less time I spent being active, the more I felt the urge to quit. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve thought, “It’d be easy to just not do your homework, just sleep, you’ve earned it. You’ll be done with school for good in less than a year anyway.” Despite how sweet that sounds in my head, that’s the worst thing I could do.

When I lost motivation, the whole world came crashing down on me. My grades dropped, my relationships failed, and I couldn’t cope. At the beginning of senior year, though, I finally gained control of my motivation. However, many of my peers haven’t been so fortunate.

I’ve begun to wonder, why are some students doing fine, while so many more are struggling this much? After long contemplation on my current state of motivation, I’ve come to a conclusion. Now I don’t claim this to be the case for everyone, but I believe it can be good general advice. Some of us have learned to take hold of our struggle, despite the problems we have. It could be because we just have strong willpower, or more likely because we found that one thing that pushed us to overcome. 

In my case, I found the one thing that pushed me to get up in the morning. It was a quote by retired Navy SEAL William McRaven. He said, “If you want to change the world, start by making your bed.” 

When I first heard those words, they rang through my head like nothing I’ve ever heard before. They caused me to reflect on every single action I took on a daily basis, and more importantly, it gave me the motivation to wake up every morning. One more day, one more breath, one step closer to reaching my current goal: enlisting in the Marine Corps.

I didn’t write this column to make you impressed with my accomplishments, though, I wrote this as a way to help people get motivated. So I ask you, the reader, to take a step back and find something that resonates with you, just as that quote resonated with me. And use that to push yourself and get motivated. Once you find your motivation, you can do anything.


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