How to Control Your Senioritis Symptoms

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    Senioritis is the famed academic disease that is both earnestly felt by many and jokingly discussed in between classes. Oftentimes it is presented as an inevitable state of being. One that you reach after countless years of intellectual striving. Most commonly, students experience senioritis symptoms shortly after receiving college decisions. 

    Although its impacts vary, senioritis can generally be described as a loss of motivation. Students may begin to let their grades slip and not turn in their assignments. Others may begin to procrastinate more, put less effort into their work, or lose interest in their studies. Some students may even begin to skip class altogether. Senioritis has the potential to impact any high school senior, including straight-A students. This is why advice for high school seniors can be so helpful. 

    Maintaining your motivation can be difficult for anyone, regardless of their age. Ultimately, this is why learning how to avoid senioritis or how to overcome senioritis is such an important lesson, one that will continue to help you throughout the rest of your studies and ultimately your career. 

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    Why might I suffer from senioritis?

    You likely have several questions about senioritis, including What’s senioritis? What causes senioritis? And is there a senioritis cure?

    Let’s start with the question “what is senioritis?” Senioritis is the product of an academic mindset focused solely on outcomes. Many students experience senioritis once they begin to receive their college decisions. Once they make it into college, some students disengage from their normal routines and responsibilities. They feel secure knowing what happens next. In some cases, however, this can be a false sense of security. This is because college acceptances can be rescinded if a student fails to maintain their grades. This is especially important to keep in mind for students applying Early Action and Early Decision 

    Alongside students experiencing senioritis who’ve been accepted to one of their top schools, there are some students who are deeply disappointed with their outcomes. Countless students are not admitted to their dream schools and sometimes, in an act of despair, these students lose all motivation. This is because these students feel like their past efforts haven’t been properly recognized. 

    The importance of applying to “fit” schools

    If you do not want to be disappointed in your college outcomes, check out our post on finding colleges that are a good ‘fit’ for you and how to strategically apply to maximize your college acceptances. You may also want to review our article on reasons college applications may be rejected to try to avoid common pitfalls. 

    It’s important to realize that both types of students––those satisfied with their outcomes and those that are dissatisfied––work hard and invest in their studies because they are hoping for a particular outcome. Once their outcomes are revealed, they experience a serious decline in motivation. This is when other symptoms of senioritis may kick in. 

    Why control the symptoms?

    You may ask, “So what? Why does it matter if students loosen up at the end of their high school career?” There are a number of reasons why it is important for students to remain engaged throughout the rest of their senior year. Senioritis is real and in this section, we will review four reasons why you should try your best to find a cure for senioritis.


    Learning never stops

    First, college acceptances are not the sole purpose of going to school. Ideally, students dedicate themselves to their studies because they love to learn. Learning doesn’t stop as soon as you receive your college decisions. There are still plenty of worthwhile learning experiences that occur at the end of your senior year. This is one reason why knowing how to get rid of senioritis is important.


    College acceptances can be rescinded

    Second, aside from missing out on learning opportunities, there are serious potential impacts that senioritis can have on students’ future opportunities. For example, college acceptances are contingent on grade maintenance. It is important that students keep up their grades and finish their senior year strong; otherwise, they may find that their future is not as secure as they thought. Your grades may also impact scholarship opportunities or other merit-based financial aid


    It’s important to maintain a strong work ethic

    Third, high school is meant to teach you important lifelong skills. It’s the time to build discipline, and good study habits, and strengthen your own internal sense of what drives you and motivates you. Finishing strong your senior year is a promising sign that you’ll be able to handle the constant workload you’ll have in college and beyond. 


    High school habits can have a lasting impact on your future

    Four, once you enter college and the professional workforce, you’ll find that your future trajectory is no longer as clear as it was in high school. If one opportunity doesn’t pan out how you wanted it to, you’ll have to move on to the next. In other words, knowing how to find a career you love isn’t nearly as straightforward as applying to college. 

    Remember, there is always room to learn and grow more as you progress through high school, college, and your professional career. This is all to say that it is completely fine to take a break after you’ve been working hard for so long. But it is not okay to let that break turn into a norm of shirking your responsibilities and tuning out. Keep learning, keep growing, and keep planning and preparing for your next steps!

    How can I control the symptoms of senioritis?

    If you begin feeling symptoms of senioritis, don’t worry. There’s a cure for your boredom, restlessness, and lack of motivation. It can feel difficult to know how to cure senioritis, but remember, it is possible. Consider the tips below to combat senioritis and finish your senior year strong. 

    For example, you might:

    • Research something you’re curious about
    • Take free online courses on topics you like
    • Read a book for pleasure
    • Pursue a passion project

    Hopefully, some of these ideas are appealing to you. If you’re still not feeling inspired, however, there are more methods to consider. Let’s take a look at how senioritis causes can be more thoroughly addressed. 


    Learn to love learning (again)

    There’s no doubt that many students experiencing senioritis love to learn. Otherwise, they likely would not be willing to go through four more years of education. Those experiencing senioritis are just tired; they are emerging from a marathon sprint of applying to college and figuring out their next steps. They know their outcomes and, now, must remember that learning is valuable in and of itself. Learning is not just about reaching a goal or some idea of success but is valuable as a personal experience that enriches one’s understanding of the world. 

    If you feel less engaged in or enthusiastic about your studies than you used to, find ways to rediscover your joy for learning. Push yourself to remain engaged in your courses. Use your free time to do something that is meaningful and interesting. Do something that requires intellectual engagement, instead of upping your time spent playing video games or watching tv. 


    Practice new life skills

    Consider using your free time to practice new life skills in order to increase your independence and prepare for your future. Your transition to college will present a lot of new challenges. You may find yourself living on your own for the first time in your life, cooking your own meals, and/or managing your own finances. 

    Start preparing early by drafting your college packing list, trying out some new recipes, or reading our blog post on successful college financial planning. Use the rest of your senior year to get excited and prepared for your next steps. You’ll have many major transition points throughout your adult life as you change jobs, move to a new place, and/or settle down and start a family. Use your time productively and gain the skills you need to plan for and adapt to new life events. 


    Get involved in your community

    Get involved. We are all, in part, products of our communities. We are influenced and supported by friends, family members, neighbors, teachers, and strangers. If you are grateful for all that you’ve achieved so far and found yourself with time to spare, consider getting more involved in your community.

    Are there places for you to volunteer and give back? Can you organize a community appreciation event? Can you spearhead a fundraiser or day of action that leaves some aspect of your community better off? Give back to those who have helped you become who you are today. 

    As you can see, there is no shortage of things you can do during your senior year to remain engaged and finish strong. Set goals for yourself of what you hope to accomplish by the end of your senior year, make a calendar, and reward yourself in small ways for accomplishing your goals. 

    Concluding thoughts on senioritis

    If you began this article wondering, what does senioritis mean? and is senioritis a real thing? hopefully, you’ve learned a thing or two about the importance of maintaining a rigorous work ethic. Senioritis is no easy thing to overcome, but it is much easier to combat once you reorient your mindset on what learning and productivity mean to you. 

    If you find yourself with less to do than usual, seize that spare time to do something meaningful for you and your community. And, if you’re finding yourself short of motivation, remind yourself of what the purpose and value of learning are in the first place. 

    Education and, more broadly, life is not about checking off achievements on a list. It is about your experiences of growth and learning. So, keep learning, keep growing, and keep preparing for your next steps. If you feel like you could benefit from professional guidance during this time, reach out to learn more about our services.

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