Are you planning on going abroad for school but want to keep up on the schoolwork? Hold on tight because we will discuss the basics of adapting, staying focused, and being motivated on your study abroad journey on the island of Spetses! There is a theory that is very helpful when having trouble staying on track in my studies. This theory is called the goal-setting theory and the approach to apply it is using the SMART goals tactic. Applying SMART goals, which is an acronym for specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and
time-bound, will ensure that you have a more efficient way to finish your assignments so you have more time to relax out in the sun!
When I first got to Spetses, I found adapting to this new life tough. As we all know, island life can differ from the busy Los Angeles city life. Spetses works on a unique island rhythm, which it can be hard to adapt. Initially, I fought the urge to lay on the beach all day, totally embrace the relaxed pace of island life, and hinder myself academically. Often we have to adjust to new situation in life, such as a new place or a busy schedule. For example, I found that some of the assignments that were assigned to me were very difficult to stay on track with. So, to combat this problem, I set clear and meaningful goals to drive my motivation and focus, using the goal-setting theory.
As you take off on your study abroad journey, take the time to define your plans to stay on track. Are you aiming to achieve academic excellence, finish all your assignments while staying social? Remember to write how you would define your goals. Write an outline or bring a planner to help you stay organized with the goals you have set for yourself. Whatever it may be, the clarity and meaning behind your goals will serve as a map, guiding you to focus on what is essential and driving you toward success.
Now that you created your goals, it’s time to incorporate your SMART goals. You will want to break down your broader goals into smaller, manageable tasks to do this. For example, if your goal is to get a paper done, it is crucial to set specific targets to reach this goal. Start with brainstorming what you will write about, create an outline, or give yourself an hour to write. Don’t forget to incorporate when you would like to finish this goal. For instance, set a goal like, I am going to finish writing two pages today. Then, when you have finished writing the pages to stay social, give yourself two hours to sit outside on the beach with the new friends you have made on this trip! This will help you not feel so overwhelmed, while in the process of completing your goal. Making doable SMART goals will keep you focused, accountable, and motivated throughout your study abroad journey. Remember to monitor your progress; it’s vital to keeping motivation high!
Remember to keep track of your achievements. Whether they are huge or tiny, it is important to celebrate each milestone with a drink or your favorite snack. Did you finish all your assignments on time? What grade did you get on your assignments? Acknowledging and rewarding your hard work with positive reinforcement will fuel your motivation and keep you on track to finishing your next assignment. Monitoring your achievements will also help you figure out if something is not working so that you can adapt your studying habits as needed.
Studying abroad is an ever-changing experience; although it can be difficult, it is essential to remain flexible and be able to adapt when setting goals. When studying abroad, you can encounter unforeseen opportunities or challenges. It is necessary to be open to adjusting your goals. Use the beauty of adaptation as a superpower and allow your goals to evolve with the ever-changing circumstances. By adapting to your environment, you will make the most of your study abroad experience, increasing your personal and academic growth.
Studying abroad is a fantastic opportunity for personal growth, cultural immersion, and academic achievement. By setting clear and meaningful goals, using the goal setting theory and SMART goals you will be successful in your study abroad experience or any new experience that challenges you in your future, creating a more organized, meaningful, and adaptable you! Studying abroad can be a transformative time in your life, and by using the goal-setting theory, you will have the study abroad experience you have always dreamed of. Good luck on an unforgettable journey ahead and safe travels!