These days students are often distracted continually. Whether it be social media, Netflix or Gaming, the ability to keep attention on one topic for prolonged periods of time is rather hard. The dopamine frenzy young people are often exposed to these days are at levels that people of yesteryear would be astounded by.
I often wondered whenever I had a big exam to study for, what was it that drove me to study? Was it the comfort of knowing I had understood the content and would be ready? In my case no, it was Fear of failure. I would always think about how horrible it would be if I failed. The hours of energy put into re-doing something and making sure everyone knew I had failed would be enough of a deterrent that the thought of it would often make me feel guilty that I wasn’t studying hard enough.
Couple the above with very clear boundaries for things I would hope to achieve, and I had a recipe that generally worked rather well. I also made found ways to reward myself as I got closer to achieving the goal and of course after meeting it too.
However, this worked for me and everyone is different, so I’m sure there’s variants of this people adopt that gets them through.