Does this refrain go around on a loop in your head some days? Do you try and try and try and try, but still can’t get your butt in gear?
Fear not: here are 13 tips to help you get your groove back!
- Start with baby steps: If you’re having a hard time getting started, maybe you’re thinking too big. Instead of thinking about the great big task you have to do, break it down into “bite-size” mini-tasks. The work will seem less daunting, and easier to handle.
- Shake up your routine: If you usually start your day doing spreadsheets or reports, switch it up a bit. Do them after lunch or at the end of the day. Little shocks to your system are good for hot-wiring your enthusiasm.
- Get by with a little help from a friend:I f you’re really stuck, drop everything and call that friend who always makes you laugh. Spend five minutes talking about silly stuff to recharge your batteries.
- Find something that interests you in a task that doesn’t: Even the most banal tasks have some pleasurable component to them. Focus on that “one weird thing” you like about what you have to do, no matter how simple or small. It will get you moving forward.
- Take your work seriously (even if it seems lame): James Patterson, one of the world’s best-selling novelists, used to work in advertising. He said, “Look, you’re writing a Ford or Burger King commercial, it’s ridiculous, let’s face it. But if you give it your all you’re going to feel pretty good! Take it seriously.”
- Realize that there’s an ebb and flow: Motivation isn’ta constant thing. It comes and goes, like the tide. It will eventually return to you. So take a walk, have a cuppa, chat with a colleague, and wait for the tide to come back in. It always does.
- Make your goal public: If you tell someone – or write down – your goal, you’ve essentially made a promise to keep your word. By making yourself accountable, you’ll feel driven to get things done.
- Think of the positive outcomes of achieving your task: Think about what you need to accomplish today. Don’t worry about everything that’s holding you back. Instead, focus on the positive things that will happen once you get it done. Maybe you’ll learn something new, maybe you’ll make yourself proud, maybe you’ll be recognized for your efforts.
- Give yourself rewards: To motivate you along the way, promise yourself some sort of recompense each time you complete a task or a step of a task. Check your social media, get a snack from the office kitchen, listen to some excellent tunes…
- Ask for feedback: It’s hard to stay motivated if you’re working in a black hole of silence. Ask your manager or a colleague to tell you what they think of the job you’re doing. Getting feedback on your work can not only give you an ego boost but it can help you see the difference that your work is making to your company.
- Don’t think about your task as hard work: Think about it as part of making yourself into who you want to be. If you stop viewing your project as drudgery but rather as a step on the path that leads to career success, the energy you need to do it will be easier to find.
- Stop worrying about things that don’t matter: Don’t waste mental energy on doing things that don’t mean anything. Look carefully and closely at your to-do list and eliminate anything that’s truly demotivating or unnecessary for you to do. You don’t absolutely have to finish what you started – especially if, as time passes, you can’t even remember why you started it in the first place.
- Set a quit time and stick to it: It’s important to recognize when enough is enough. No one can plow through task after task 24/7. So set a realistic quitting time for yourself, and stick to it as often as you can. Make the most of your evenings and weekends. Motivation will be waiting for you when you return!