Every year, students come down with the worst cases of it. No, we're not talking about the flu, but senioritis. You don't need a vaccine to cure senioritis. Rather, you just need to acknowledge the symptoms and work to re-motivate yourself using methods like gamifying your homework and changing up your workspace.
What Is Senioritis (and Is It Real)?
While there hasn't been a ton of scientific research done on the effects senioritis has on teens and adults, the common experience attests to the fact that there's definitely something in the air during those last few months before school's out. Whether you're a senior in high school or college, you're probably feeling less motivated about working hard on those final assignments. You might even feel apathetic about how you perform.
This restless feeling can be compounded by the exciting things you've planned for your summer vacation, or the job prospects you've got lined up after graduation. Every student has some sense of what the future outside of school holds for them, and they want to race to the finish line.
What this means is that even if there's not a strict definition of what senioritis is, the combination of factors impacting students during senior year can lead to a very real phenomenon.
Signs That You Might've Caught a Case of Senioritis
If there's one thing we know well today, it's how quickly a virus can spread, and senioritis will plow through a senior class in record time. If you've been beating yourself up about burnout or apathy that you've never really experienced before, take a deep breath and pause for a second. You could just have a case of senioritis. Some common senioritis symptoms are:
- Apathy for subjects you used to enjoy
- Lack of urgency to make deadlines
6 Ways to Cure Your Senioritis Before Lunch
Thankfully, senioritis doesn't have to be here to stay. Once you recognize the signs, you can conquer senioritis with a few calculated measures. And before you know it, the school year'll be over and you'll be on to bigger and brighter things.
Set Smaller Goals
If you're usually a goal-oriented student, then senioritis might be hitting you particularly hard. Instead of setting grand goals to hit throughout the week, lighten your load by planning smaller ones. Things like responding to those forums for assignment points or making sure you fold your laundry will feel less daunting to accomplish than bigger ones, and you'll be more likely to actually get them done.
Gamify Your Homework and Assignments
Part of the reason that senioritis is so consuming is that you know there's something exciting waiting behind the monotony of the past four years. So, hack your young adult brain by gamifying your homework and assignments. Organize your homework as mini campaigns and give yourself experience points for every one you complete. At the end of the week, if you've gotten enough experience points, you can level up and give yourself a small reward like a coffee or lunch out.
Cut Down on Screen Time
Students today are using technology in their academic and personal lives more than ever. Yet, social media platforms are hard-wired to activate our brains and keep us watching for longer. Kids have coined this 'doomscrolling' - where you're just passively consuming whatever's online in order to avoid other responsibilities.
Limit the distractions from the work you need to do by cutting down on your daily screen time. Or, set aside screen time for after a specific hour in your day. That way, you carve out time to complete your assignments while also having a reward to look forward to (without tempting you to stop every five minutes along the way).
Change Up Your Workspace
If school's feeling monotonous, then the same desk setup you've had all year probably is too. Stimulate your senses and make things feel fresh by changing up your workspace. Whether that's redecorating or heading somewhere else to work, physically moving away from the place you were feeling in a rut can jumpstart a new productive period.
Get Moving In-Between School Work
Experts recommend that you take a quick break every twenty or so minutes when you're working, and there's no better way to physically and mentally refresh than by getting up and moving. Go on a light jog, hop on a treadmill, or stretch a little. Balance out your day by working your body and your brain. And since working out can release dopamine, you should return to your work in a better mood and feel more prepared to tackle it.
Stick to a Schedule
One of the hardest things for some people to do is stick to a schedule. We understand that it's harder for some than others, but if you're really struggling to accomplish the final tasks you have for your classes, then you should give it a try.
Don't think that you have to make a full-day schedule that you can't deviate from. Rather, setting a schedule is just about intentionally setting aside time for your different activities so that you actually touch your homework and get it done before the deadline.
No Senioritis Is Too Strong to Cure
Your parents might joke about senioritis, but it's a serious social and mental phenomenon that strikes at the end of the school year. If you don't work on scaling the symptoms back, you might have real consequences when graduation comes around. Prevent undoing your years of hard work by trying out these simple ways to cure your senioritis when the time comes.