By Samantha Lund, Columnist

As the weather becomes nicer, most want to go outside and play Frisbee and leave our books inside to collect dust. There seem to be so many more entertaining things to do: picnics, hiking, tanning, exploring Tacoma or even just watching TV — “Game of Thrones” did just start up again — can be difficult to resisit.

With all the excitement spring brings, our work ethic can suffer. Grades slip this time of the year, and it becomes harder to motivate yourself to work with summer almost in sight.

“Spring is time for flings and fun. No one wants to do homework,” junior Naomi Bess said. “I combat that feeling by doing homework at night when it’s dark. I’d rather stay up late then miss having fun in the sun.”

Make sure to set goals. If you want daily or monthly goals, it makes no difference, because just setting goals gives you something to focus on. You can set reminders in your phone or have a friend do it with you so you can hold each other accountable.

Before each week begins, take a look at your syllabi and keep in mind all the dates and deadlines coming up. Set reasonable goals regarding these dates. Do not overwhelm yourself — you can be your own worst enemy.

“Making summer plans keeps me pretty distracted from school work,” sophomore Erin McCoy said. “I try to get my work done quickly so I can enjoy spring or try to do homework outside.”

Just because you are making an effort not to slow down this spring does not mean the people around you are doing the same. Keeping that in mind, plan for alternative study places. If your roommate is binge-watching a Netflix show or your next-door neighbors have decided to have a dance party, you need another place to study. The Mortvedt Library is obviously the quietest study area on campus, but the University Commons can also be a good alternative along with Foss Field on a nice sunny day.

With spring comes spring cleaning — use some of your extra time to get rid of anything unnecessary and clean up your workspace. By workspace I am talking about your desk, your backpack and anything else that might need some cleaning out. Clutter can cause unnecessary anxiety and stress.

“We start to feel burnt out,” sophomore Karen Bullinger said. “Couple that with the sunshine, and all we want to do is be outside, spending time with our friends. Personally, I struggle with it a lot. The best thing I’ve found for this is keeping a detailed to-do list on my whiteboard.”

My favorite way of staying motivated is giving myself a reward system. It cannot be anything too easy, like every sentence you get a bite of candy. This will diminish your work quality and leave you without any Sour Patch Kids.   The system should be something challenging, but do not work yourself too hard. Try an hour of sunshine for every hour you study, or studying until a certain time each night, and then give yourself the rest of the night to relax. If you give yourself something to look forward to, it can help the studying seem like less of a drag.

It is spring and the school year is almost over. With all of your finals and job searching, do not forget to have fun. LollaPLUza is coming, as well as summer and some well-deserved time off. All you have to do is settle down and keep those grades up so you can come back next year and have all this fun again.

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