One of the hardest parts of homeschooling yourself isn’t the legal hoops you have to jump through, nor is it finding curricula that suit you. No, the hardest part is simply following through and studying. When you don’t have a teacher lurking over your shoulder, you might not feel like solving those problems or writing that essay, and there’s nobody to say you have to.

If you’re not easily self-motivated, get others to help. Simply making it public that you intend to do something can help a lot, as it forces us to be accountable and actually do what we say we would, or risk losing face.

By far the best way of keeping yourself on-track when studying is to get yourself in line and motivate yourself, however. The key to this doesn’t lie in any obscure texts; those who set goals properly and follow through with them have known them for ages. The sum of all your wants is what you will end up working towards.

If you want to succeed at homeschooling, but you also don’t want to exert much effort, whichever of those two is stronger will win out. Of course, it probably isn’t this simple – there are other wants involved, like not wanting to disappoint your parents, wanting to get it over and done with, and not wanting to spend money on the same course twice.

Learn how to properly study – at a fixed spot, around the same time every day if possible, and you will improve your chances of successfully studying. Eat healthily, don’t have snacks with lots of sugar or caffeine, and drink lots of water. Being in the right physiological condition helps you to settle down and focus.

Remove as many distractions as you can. For some people, this might mean muting the ringer on your phone or even unplugging it, shutting down your email program, or putting away the book you really want to read. Whatever is getting in your way of complete concentration, reduce or eliminate it for best results.

Not multitasking will make it easier to focus on studying when you need to. If you are trying to do many things at once, your brain has to devote energy to them all, leaving less in total. As much as we are advised to multitask nowadays, it isn’t an effective or healthy way to do your studying.

One of the hardest parts of studying isn’t really related to the material at all. Once you’ve gotten started, it’s relatively easy to stay on track, but just starting can seem like an immense ordeal at times. Being able to push through this will give you the “staying power” that employers and friends will begin to admire about you, however. Just do one small task, like reading the first sentence of your assignment or starting to solve a math problem, and let your momentum carry you onwards.

Studying by yourself is a challenge for any homeschooled student, but with enough practice and a strong enough will – or want – to complete your education, you can push through and do your studying.