Motivating Yourself For Your 9ams


We all have them, an unpleasant reminder that fun as it is, uni is still school, a form of formal education, shackling us down to an unforgiving schedule that robs us of sleep, free time, and long lazy mornings in bed. Even so, getting your 9k a year’s worth (or your considerably-more-than-that’s worth if you’re an international student) means taking every opportunity to learn. Yes, even 9 ams. Here is a list of things that will motivate you to get up early in the morning, grab a notebook, and show up bright eyed (ish) and ready to learn!

  1. Getting your money’s worth

I already mentioned that, but really – you came to university to learn, right? Might as well show up, and take some notes from the lecturers who definitely know more than you, and who really, really, would also rather not be starting their day looking at an audience with more empty sections in it than a Donald Trump rally.

In my first year I had less than stellar attendance. But this October I came to Lancaster determined to not skip a single lecture, seminar or tutorial. And then I opened my timetable, and saw not one, not two, but three 9 ams. And two 10 ams, but honestly, they might as well be the same thing, considering.

My determination wavered.

“I can’t believe I am the person with the most 9ams in this house,” I complained to my housemate, expecting a sympathetic shoulder to cry on.

“You’re also the person most likely to just skip them,” she said soberingly.

This brings motivational point number…


  1. Sheer spite

I do not want to be known as a person who skips lectures. From now on, my main objective is to be on time, on the first row, taking notes in every single tedious 9 am. I am determined. Aside from just being very useful for your academic record, showing up to a 9am gives you a bit of a moral high ground over people who don’t, in fact, attend their early lectures. You can sit in that chair, doodling in the margins of your notebook, half-listening and feeling really, really good about yourself as a human, while at the same time…


  1. Making a good impression

Maybe your lecturer won’t know your name throughout the whole year, especially if you’re on a big course. But they sure will remember your face if they have to see it every week for an hour (or two hours, or more hours). They might even remember it with a good feeling, if you answer a couple of questions, look interested, and just, you know, participate.


  1. Academic preparation

It should go without saying that it’s the early bird that gets at least a 2.1. Even if the slides go up online, and you borrow someone’s notes, there’s still the possibility that you will miss something important. You might think doing the readings is enough (but honestly, if you’re the kind of person who skips their 9 am, do you even DO the readings?) but you don’t want to find out the hard way if that’s true.

  1. A productive start to your day

Start your day off strong! No one expects too much of you that early in the morning, but you can still grab a coffee at Costa, and go about the rest of your day knowing that you’ve at least done something productive. Really, just by showing up to the lecture, you’ve already done the bare minimum – now that you’re there, you might as well get to work. You’ll be on the fast track to a first before you know it.

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