Have you been feeling a little drained at work recently?
Maybe you’re just a bit flat and you can’t find the enthusiasm you used to have. Or maybe your motivation has just disappeared, flown out of the window and hasn’t been seen since?
Well the good news is, that’s completely normal! It’s called the ‘March slump’, and it happens to a lot of people! Once the excitement of Christmas and New Year has died down, the fanfare is over and you’re back into the thick of things, feeling a bit low and unmotivated is to be expected. But you need to be productive at your job all year round, which means you need to find a way to recapture that enthusiasm and motivation.
How Do You Know If You’re Struggling With Motivation?
The easy answer would of course be, ‘like you don’t have the motivation to do anything.’ But that’s a bit of a catch-all answer. The reality is that a lack of motivation can feel different to everyone, and it can sometimes be difficult to realise that it’s even a problem at all.
For example, some people struggle overall with motivation to do anything. Even something as simple as getting out of bed seems impossible, and try as they might, they can’t find the energy or enthusiasm to sit up, turn around, put their feet on the floor and stand up. But for others, they might be fine with that, but struggle when it’s time to do their work. Or clean the house. Or read to the children. It can range from just feeling too tired and fed up to care about doing the thing right now, to not even caring if the thing gets done at all.
The occasional lack of motivation is completely normal, and it can usually be overcome with a little time and support. But a chronic lack of motivation can be almost debilitating. It can crush you, and sometimes literally prevent you from taking any action whatsoever. You have no desire or interest in doing the task ahead of you, even if you know you should, no matter what the consequences. It can make you feel apathetic, as well as incredibly guilty. At work, all of this is incredibly bad news. When lack of motivation reaches this stage, you may need support to help you identify the underlying cause and get the treatment you need.
Our Top Tips For Motivation
If you’re struggling with motivation at work it can be incredibly frustrating and disheartening, especially if it’s something you love to do. Luckily many motivation issues are temporary, or they can be managed with a little bit of effort. To help you out, here are a few of our top tips for getting your motivation back at work this month.
Keep a Journal: If you’re not really sure what’s demotivating you, then your first step is to find out. By getting to the root of your motivation (or lack of), you’ll be able to put strategies in place to cope with it, or potentially resolve it altogether! One of the best ways to do this is to keep a journal. Write down what you’re doing and how you’re feeling throughout the day, and review it at the end. You might see a pattern that could point to the problem.
Break Up Tasks: If your motivation issues are limited to one thing or a few things, rather than work as a whole, it might be time to re-evaluate how you approach them. For example if you have a big task to do, try breaking it down into smaller pieces that are easy to achieve. Remember, an author doesn’t sit down and write a whole book in a day – it’s broken down into researching different elements, writing paragraphs, writing chapters and so on. Any task can be broken down, and it’s often easier to find the motivation to do a smaller task than a big one.
Set A Quitting Time: Both employees and entrepreneurs have been known to burn the candle at both ends, especially when they have deadlines coming up. And if you’re struggling with motivation you may feel you need to work longer to make sure you get everything done. And while sometimes that can be helpful, more often it just makes things worse. So set yourself a firm quitting time, and stick to it. Spend your downtime resting, and you’ll feel much more refreshed and ready to work when you go back. No one is motivated 24/7, so don’t try to force it when it’s not happening.
Give Yourself Some Recovery Time: Life is a constant balancing act of effort and recovery. The first 2 months of the year can be pretty intense for a lot of businesses, so if you’ve been working hard consistently for 2 months, you might be suffering with a bit of burnout. Speak to your managers or just book a Friday and Monday off to give yourself a long weekend to focus on your recovery. Do some things for you, catch up on your sleep, and give yourself the break you deserve.
Motivation is something that fluctuates in everyone, but when you’re struggling with a lack of motivation long-term it can have some negative effects on your work and your life. If you’d like more support or tips like the ones above to help with your motivation, why not try downloading our MELP app? It’s regularly updated with tools, techniques, and guided exercises to help you overcome a lack of motivation and see you steaming through your to-do list in no time!