Here is a set of 3 videos based upon the following email I received from a reader:
Hello Seth,I have an 11-year old son in 6th grade, a 2E-type boy (in a “GT” program since 3rd grade and also on a 504), who is not motivated by much of anything. When he wants to, he can do great work, but only when he wants. And, it’s never clear what motivates this uptick in more attention to his work. Sometimes, it’s the subject matter, as he definitely has his passions. He’s very much an out-of-the-box thinker. He’s been this way since he was a toddler — not even motivated by potty-training stickers or treats… 🙂 How can I help to “light his fire” without grand bargains? At this point, I sound like a broken record… “Have a great day! Remember, neat and complete!” Part of the problem surely rests with my ability to handle the issue. Argh! Help! BTW, his twin sister is highly self-motivated, gets straight A’s because of her strong work ethic and did not qualify for the GT program (which is fine by us). We have never and will never compare the two. They have very different learning styles and outlooks. We also do not put a premium on letter grades, but on doing the best that they can. It just comes out differently for each them. So crazy!If I could wave a magic wand, I’d make my son’s work output and motivation reflect the visions he has articulated for himself in the future: he’s in love with the Air Force Academy and, at this point, wants to be an engineer or a pilot. He’s got big dreams, and of course, as a parent, I just want him to be happy pursuing something he loves.Thank you!
Video #1: Unmotivated Students: The Reason WHY (For PARENTS)
Video #2: Unmotivated Students: How to Help (For PARENTS)
Video #3: How to “get motivated” (For STUDENTS)
💚 Give: Love my work and want to donate?
🎦 YouTube: Visit my official YouTube channel here. Please subscribe, like & comment to support my work.
👉 Share: To support me, please *CLICK* at the bottom to share on FB or Pinterest.
✏️ EF101: Here’s my jumpstart course for parents and teachers.
🙏 Thanks! — Seth
Video #3 for STUDENTS – How to “get motivated”
Hey, what’s up? This is Seth Perler. If you are a middle schooler, a high schooler, or a college student who struggles with motivation, this video is for you. I’m going to give you a couple of tips on how to motivate yourself to do stuff you don’t want to do. I know, I know, I know. Parents bug you, they try to motivate you, your teachers try to motivate you it gets annoying. Everybody’s trying to motivate you. You probably want to be doing certain things and be able to just sit down and do it, but you can’t motivate yourself to do it. You procrastinate, you avoid, you resist, you get in arguments about it, you make excuses. You just don’t want to do something that’s not fun, that seems meaningless, that seems to be a waste of your time. You’re asking yourself, “Why do I have to do this?” So, how do you get over that? Like, how do you motivate yourself? How do you actually get yourself to do these things if you want to be able to start to get in the habit where you’re able to do things you don’t necessarily want to do, but you know you need to do? Or if you know that regardless of what path your life takes you will have to do things you don’t want to do and you have to override that resistance in your brains. So how do you do that? I’m going to give you a quick tip that you can use. This you can use for studying, for homework, for whatever you have to do, for cleaning your bedroom, cleaning your backpack, whatever you have to do. I’m going to give you a quick tip on this.
The tip is this. What you want to do is you want to chunk it down. My dad always says, “How do you eat an elephant? You eat an elephant one bite at a time.” You can’t do the whole thing. And what happens with you, is you feel overwhelmed because there are so many tasks nowadays that kids are required to manage. You have so many classes, so much homework, so many tests, so many papers to manage, so many things in your bedroom to manage, so many things to take care of. It is absolutely overwhelming. So what you have to do is you have to chunk it down so that it feels not overwhelming. Okay, there’s two ways to chunk, I’ll explain this to you.
Number 1: One way to chunk is by tasks. Let’s say that you have a huge math assignment, you know it’s going to take you a long time and you’re procrastinating. You don’t even want to start on it. In order to chunk it down by task, you’re going to make it into very small pieces. For example, your task might be to do the first five problems only. Or your task might be that you’re only going to do the easiest ones first. Or your task might be that you’ll do half of the math assignment. If you’re writing a paper, your task might be that you’ll just write the outline, and then take a break. Your task might be that you just free-write. Your task might be that you just have a conversation with a friend in the class about the paper and talk through where you’re going to go with your paper. So you’re going to chunk it into tasks that feel manageable. You’re not going to say, “UGHH I have to write that paper. It’s going to take me forever. I don’t even want to start!” You’re going to say instead, “Okay, this paper is a big thing with a small task I can do that feels manageable.” If you have to clean your old bedroom, a task will be to just do the floor, just to do the clothes, just to organize the bookshelf, just to clean your desk. A task is a small thing that will feel manageable to you. You decide how big the task.
Number 2: The other thing is time. You can chunk by time, so this is awesome. Let’s say that you have to clean your room. You can just set this timer for 3 minutes, or 5 minutes, or 10 minutes, whatever feels like a reasonable amount of time. It makes noise so it’s very audible, when it’s done it’s done. If you want to clean your room for 5 minutes. You set it and go for 5, when the timer is done, you can quit cleaning your room, or you can keep cleaning your room. A lot of time doing this will just help you trick yourself into actually getting the ball rolling. Same with this, by the way (number 1). The object with both of these is to trick yourself into keeping the train moving. We’re just trying to get through the overwhelm of self-starting, of getting started. A lot of times that’s the biggest problem is just starting it. So you want to chunk it down so you don’t feel overwhelmed. But set the timer for an amount of time that feels manageable. You’re writing a paper? Set it for 5 minutes, 10 minutes, a half-hour, whatever you want. But a manageable amount of time that you can devote to the paper. If you have to work on the math assignment, set it for 5 minutes, 20 minutes, whatever, it doesn’t matter. But you want to junk it down to an amount of time that feels comfortable.
So again, you chunk by task or time. Task is breaking it into micro-tasks, one big task into many micro-tasks. Pick a micro-task to get the ball rolling. You’ll probably trick yourself into continuing. Same thing with time. Just pick an amount of time that you want to work on something. Set it, and when it’s done, you can keep going or you can stop. But you need to learn to trick yourself. It’s not like the motivation fairy is going to come and give you some motivation fairy dust and you’re going to be like, “Oh, yeah, this is exciting. Now I’m ready to do my homework.” Don’t fool yourself. I’ve heard a lot of students say, “I’m just waiting till I’m ready. Until I feel ready.” You’re not going to feel ready. That’s not reality. They don’t wait for that. Look for strategies that you can trick yourself into getting started and doing things piece-by-piece. Slowly you’ll build your threshold where you can be more focused for longer periods of time, have less distractions, and be a more serious student so that you can create whatever future you want. So that you can follow your dreams and your passions. If you don’t get this down, you’re going to have a lot of trouble following your dreams. Okay, you need to figure out how to do the things that you’re responsible for. All right. I hope that helped you, go try it out.
Please CLICK below to share.