Motivation is, of course, incredibly important to our well-being. But it’s often during the times we need it the most—when we have so much to do and are required to be the best version of ourselves—that we lack it the most, too.
Enter, overwhelm. As much as we’d like to keep up to our habits and routines, feeling overwhelmed is a big trigger that leads to a lack of motivation. Having so much on our plate, an ever-growing to-do list and not knowing where to begin can leave us feeling negative and stifled.
In human behaviour we typically respond to difficult situations in one of four ways: fight, flight, fawn or freeze. Resonate? When you’re feeling demotivated, ideally the goal is to get from ‘freeze’ to ‘fight’ as quickly as possible. To acknowledge the emotion while being kind to ourselves, and identify what’s causing it so that we can take actionable steps towards getting back to feeling motivated in a short amount of time.
The following pointers can help as a way of coaching ourselves to stay focused when we sense those motivation barriers rising back up.
When you’re seeking motivation, try to think about ‘why’ you want to do something in the first place. When you feel no motivation at all, it can sometimes be because the reason behind what you’re doing isn’t strong enough.
Write down what you want and what you need to do to get there, whether it’s small or big picture. Breaking down goals into manageable steps doesn’t feel so overwhelming and we’re less likely to procrastinate because the tasks are much smaller and, ultimately, quicker to cross off the to-do list. And once you start ticking off jobs, you’re more likely to want to keep on ticking.
How you feel about yourself matters. It’s time to start acting ‘as if’. If you tell yourself that you’re not the type of person who is driven, motivated and successful, then guess what? That’s who you’ll become. In order to change how you see yourself and the world around you, you need to change how you feel about yourself.
At Blossom & Preen, we are huge advocates of meditation and positive affirmations for helping to unlearn our limiting beliefs. Meditation is proven to make positive, long-lasting changes to our brain’s neural pathways, therefore helping to alter our thought patterns. Try to meditate regularly to actively visualise who you want to be and this will show up in your day to day before you know it. Through meditation we get a taste of who and what we could be—the best and truest, most authentic version of ourselves.
Nothing changes if nothing changes.
If you don’t set yourself goals, you’ll run the risk of falling into the trap of feeling numbed out, as though you’re drifting along in the world with no clear sense of purpose or direction. Decide what you want out of life and come up with a game plan. One vision and decision can change your life.
Following goals is so much easier when you write them down or type them out. Write your workouts on a calendar and cross them off as you go. Write out shopping lists and don’t deviate from the beaten path when you walk down the aisles at the supermarket. If you plan ahead instead of flying by the seat of your pants, chances are you’re more likely to stick with what you set out to do.
For the big picture goals, it’s important to hold yourself accountable or find an accountability partner. Make a note of the people who you might be able to share your goal with and who could give you a pep talk if needed. The key here is not to share it with anyone who might be an energy vampire. Ask yourself: who inspires you and leaves you feeling energised?
Implementing positive rituals can be a game-changer. Without locking in habits, we’re more likely to burn out and the low days will likely feel like a constant uphill battle. Small micro-habits each day lead to higher self-worth and self-respect. And the more you do them, the more you’ll want to keep doing them.
Find positive, daily habits that work for you. These might include meditation, a morning routine, reading a book instead of watching lots of TV, journaling, or waking up early.
Practice the above steps next time you hit a motivation slump. Having these tips in your back pocket will help you to bounce back faster and faster.
Do you have any other motivation tips to share?