Not only is it Monday, but it is the Monday after spring break. And not only is it the Monday after spring break, but it is also midterm week. Talk about a rough start to the week, right?

Whether you spent your break soaking up the sun, or working to make some extra cash, you’re probably not feeling very motivated. But don’t worry, we’ve all been there. If you’re feeling a lack of motivation, perhaps you’re in one of the early stages of finding your motivation.

Stage 1: Denial

After spring break,  you may want to do anything BUT study for midterms. In this stage, you may be making excuses for your laziness and denying that you have any studying to do. However, you must realize that you don’t have time. Even so, you’re Netflix queue may seem more of a priority, and of course, you’ve got to catch up with your friends.  Thus, you may be procrastinating…just for a few hours.

Stage 2: Mild Panic

A few hours turns in to an afternoon, and by the end of the day, you’re rather tired. But, you’ve got your books, your highlighter, and you’ve cleaned your desk. Although you’re feeling mildly panicked that you won’t be prepared for a midterm exam or your upcoming paper, you feel accomplished. After all, getting prepared for studying is the biggest hurdle, right?

Stage 3: Caffeination and crisis.

You’re starting to seriously panic. So, after all else has failed, you’re finally going to sit down to study. But before you actually start studying, you need some coffee. Or an energy drink. Or a candy bar. Or a rice cake. So now that you’re pumped up on caffeine and your stomach is blissfully satisfied, you’re starting to enter the stage of crisis. The words in your textbook are starting to meld together, and your “good idea” of texting, eating and watching TV while highly caffeinated are making you feel sick,  especially when it comes to what’s ahead in your class schedule.

Stage 4: Start Studying (and actually do it).

Once you’ve successfully lived through the previous three stages (or if you’re super awesome, and were here already), you’re ready to do some serious studying. As you begin, make sure to take adequate time to study.  Find a good place to study, away from any distractions. Set goals for yourself. Use notecards and quiz yourself, or find a study group. Visit any one of campus’ resources, like the Learning and Writing Center. Talk to your professor if you  have questions. And when the going gets rough, stay positive. If you put in the effort, you’ll do well on your midterms. Good luck.