The months of May and June 2017 will now be known as the time that I lost my motivation.
It all started when our family kicked off the summer with a vacation. It was a lovely time. I took a break from technology, and read books instead. We explored a cave, had fun on a boat, and laughed with family.
I had every intention of working on a blog post, once I returned. After all, I had just experienced a relaxing week in a beautiful cabin. I was refreshed and could look at the world with a clear head.
But I did not get any writing done.
I kept telling myself that I SHOULD work, but I could do it tomorrow.
Even my beloved bullet journal suffered, it’s pages were lonely. I didn’t doodle, I didn’t track the weather or my mood, and worst of all, I had nothing to check off.
Then, I realized something.
My journal is a huge KEY in keeping me motivated and organized.
When I stopped writing my tasks in my journal, and checking it daily, it gave me a reason to procrastinate. I also felt myself become more anxious and overwhelmed.
I had no plan to follow, so instead my brain just had a running list of things that I needed to do. Without putting it on paper, I quickly went into overload, and fell into my old pattern of just shutting down and doing nothing instead. The motivation was gone.
SO WHAT CAN YOU DO WHEN YOU NEED TO GET YOUR MOTIVATION BACK?
GIVE YOURSELF PERMISSION FOR A BREAK
First of all, it is okay to take a break.
I think that in a way, my body and mind were telling me I needed to allow myself some time to do nothing. To read those books that have been piled on my nightstand, catch up on the magazines, and even take a few naps.
Of course, my first instinct was to beat myself up for being lazy and not accomplishing anything.
Instead, I changed my perspective. I gave myself permission to have that break. No writing or work was done, but I did get to enjoy some extra time with my family. I even did some crafts and tried some recipes. And did I mention the naps?!
I was just productive in a different way.
And that is okay.
2. REVISIT YOUR GOALS
However, it is important not to stay in permanent break mode. The longer you remain in it, the harder it becomes to snap out of it.
I needed to take a look at my goals and remember why I was doing all that work in the first place.
When I was checking my bullet journal daily, I was reminded of what I was working for. When I stopped doing that, it became easier to ignore the steps that I wanted to take to accomplish my goals.
If you don’t already have a list of goals, with a plan of action, take some time to write some out. Or make a vision board. Or start a bullet journal.
Even if you are feeling unmotivated, just the simple act of looking at your goals each day will help remind and inspire you to keep working.
3. START SMALL
Part of the reason that I stopped being motivated, was that I felt like things were piling up around me. Each day my mental lists grew longer, yet I wasn’t doing anything about it. I didn’t feel like it would be possible to get everything done, so instead, I just shut down.
To combat this, pick just one thing and DO IT.
For me, I told myself that I needed to get out my journal each day and look at and start using my tracker again.
By doing my basic daily tasks again, I started feeling productive and like I was re-building my self discipline again.
Still missing a lot of x’s, but let me tell you, checking off those boxes again when I completed something felt so good!
It doesn’t matter what you choose to do, just pick one small thing and work it into a routine again. Don’t get overwhelmed trying to juggle too many things, or all of the things that you were doing before you lost your groove.
When you are feeling ready, add another task. For me, I will start doing my affirmations again. I need that positive reinforcement. 🙂
4. REWARD YOURSELF AND CREATE AN INSPIRED SPACE
This one is easy.
Make sure you create a fun space to help you feel inspired, and give yourself a little reward. Treat yourself to new journal supplies, find some inspirational quotes, clean your work area or re-arrange it, get a cute plant. Little rewards like this are good for motivation.
Just have a little corner or space where you can plan, work, clear your head, or meditate to help keep you on track.
5. DON’T FOCUS ON FAILURES
Finally, be nice to yourself.
Don’t focus on what you did wrong, or what you didn’t accomplish. Negativity can kill motivation. As I mentioned earlier, a perspective change can do wonders.
I’m going to be honest, I still have my dark moments and there are days that I just want to remain in my blanket cave and ignore everything. Just getting out of bed is a simple victory, and it counts as a success.
Think of and remember the successes that you experienced. Even if they are small. Write them down so that you can revisit them when you feel unmotivated.
I followed these 5 steps and was able to find my motivation and get to working and writing again.
It feels good to be back.
What do you do when you find yourself in a funk and need to find your groove again? I would love to hear about it in the comments.