Blogging is hard work. There are so many big and little tasks to do that it’s easy to get overwhelmed and not feel motivated to do anything!
But doing nothing gets you nowhere. And if you want to make money from your blog, you have to believe you and your blog are going to be successful. Otherwise, what is the point?
It’s okay to lose focus every once in a while as long as you recognize it quickly and work to get yourself back on track. If you’re ready to get focused and really make a business out of your online hobby, you need to understand what is driving you and keep your eye on the prize.
Try one of these positive motivation strategies when you need help getting out of a slump.
What Is Motivation?
Motivation is the underlying drive to succeed that keeps us moving toward our goals.
Motivation is what keeps us going, and it is the key to accomplishing the goals that we set for ourselves in both the short and long term.
Without motivation, we can’t fulfill our purpose. Maintaining motivation is more important than how capable you are, how much money you have, or how many people you know. Without motivation, nothing gets accomplished.
Staying motivated is more essential than how smart you are, how many skills you have, or the tools available to you to help you achieve your goals.
But what drives our motivation?
Is it solely divine inspiration that propels us toward our destiny?
Sometimes we get to experience an overwhelming sense of purpose. It is certainly wonderful when that happens, but more often motivation comes from something much more basic.
Often motivation comes from the basic need to survive. Right?
You have to put food on the table, pay the bills, save for retirement. And it gets really overwhelming really fast.
We all have to do things in our life that we don’t want to do. In fact, on a daily basis, any number of mundane and inane tasks lies between us and what we really want to do.
And being able to complete all of those inane tasks as well as take steps to move toward our ultimate goal is the key to success.
So therein lies the hard work, right? It’s hard to feel motivated to when it seems like there are a bazillion obstacles in our way.
But you can stay motivated, keep working toward your goals and still complete the tasks that are necessary to overcome even on a daily basis.
When you’re feeling really down, overwhelmed, frustrated, and depressed, it’s time to do some work on your perspective. Maintaining a positive mindset requires some work of its own. Use the following motivation strategies to help you stay on track.
First and foremost, you are the only one in control of what you do. No one can force you to sit down and accomplish a task or set daily goals for you.
You determine your own goals and define your own success.
It’s up to you look at where you are in life compared to where you want to be and make a plan to get there. When you have even the simplest 5 or 10 year plan, You’re much more likely to succeed if you believe that you will, without a doubt, accomplish your goals.
Whether you set a deadline or not, know that you are taking steps to achieve your goal and be satisfied that every task you complete is important to keep you on your way to your ultimate goal.
Understand The Significance
Understand that whatever the task at hand is, it is important to your ultimate success. Whether it is going to your day job, washing the clothes, or making dinner. Everything you do leads you to your ultimate goal.
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Every step along the way is of utmost importance. No matter how mundane, boring, or minute it might seem.
If you see your task as meaningless or a waste of time, you won’t have any desire to complete it which undermines your ability to achieve your larger goals.
Keep going until you feel competent
Being competent is less about what you know and more about how comfortable you are with what you are doing.
The more comfortable you feel with a certain task, the more likely you are to complete it. But competence only comes with experience.
You won’t always feel competent at what you’re doing, but if you keep doing it, you’ll become more comfortable over time. As your competence with a skill improves, you’ll find it’s easier to do.
How does this apply in real life?
Sometimes we don’t get to decide what our task is. You don’t always have control over the projects you are assigned at work, school, or home. You just have to do them.
So take ownership, assign significance, and identify opportunities to become competent.
This is where you take lemons and make lemonade. You can either fight with yourself over the fact that you don’t want to complete a task, or you can willfully change the way you think about it so that you have control.
Don’t forget that the results you present to your boss, teachers, and friends are always a representation of you and the kind of work you do. Even if you don’t want to complete a task, the end result of your efforts is still an indication of the kind of work that you do.
If you complete a task in a sloppy, incomplete, or inept manner, you present yourself as mediocre, lazy, and incompetent. You don’t want to be thought of in that way!
Try to find a way to make the task at hand important to accomplishing your own goals. Think about how each project can help you master an important life skill.
Are you gaining skills in communicating with others through a group project? Can you learn leadership skills by observing your boss?
It may be hard, but try to find something about the task at hand that can be translated into a learning experience that helps you achieve your goal.
In this way, whatever task is presented to you becomes a method to develop mastery in a skill.
So don’t think about it as a waste of time. Turn it into a learning experience that builds you into a better person and gives you better skills to accomplish your own goals.
It’s up to you to find your motivation.
Sometimes you can’t immediately find the motivation to complete a task. Sometimes you have to go looking for it. Try to use these suggestions as a way to surround yourself with positivity and change the way you think about tasks that you do not feel motivated to complete.
Another note worth mentioning is that completing a task is always rewarding. Finishing a project or school paper is a relief.
Know that when you have completed the task, and not just done it to the least of your ability, then you will feel a sense of accomplishment that over time will become part of your motivation to continue working.
Getting focused when you just don’t feel like it
Sometimes you just don’t feel like starting a project. Despite an impending deadline, you just don’t have any desire to even begin your assigned task.
Even though you may be facing consequences for not accomplishing your task, you just can’t muster up the motivation to get going.
We’ve all been there, and we’ll likely be there again. So consider the following tips to help you get started even when you don’t feel motivated.
Just do something.
I often tell myself this when I’m procrastinating on a project. Just go do something. Often after I get started I will find myself getting into a groove and soon I’m well on my way to completing my task.
Start with any portion of your task. It doesn’t have to be the hardest part. It could be the easiest part. It could be simply getting all your supplies together.
It could be opening up a word document and writing a title, an intro, a conclusion. Just getting started with something might be the inspiration you need to finish the whole thing.
Try shifting your focus to the individual tasks instead of focusing on the end goal. Here’s why:
Sometimes it helps to work on something creative related to your project to get you motivated to finish it. Maybe you need to make a cover for your book, an image for your blog post, take some pictures for your report, design the slides for your presentation.
Draw a picture, pick some pretty colors, even pick out your outfit for a presentation. Get your creative juices flowing by starting with something you enjoy doing. When you have that looking awesome, you’ll be excited to show others and that will motivate you to finish your project.
Set a reward
Maybe you’re the type of person who is motivated by considering the end result. Think about the money you’ll make by completing a project, the break you can take after you’ve turned in your work, or the satisfaction you’ll feel of a job well done.
You might be inspired by using a visual representation or actual reward. Consider giving yourself a visual reminder of your end goal with a photograph, magazine picture, or even an actual reward like chocolate cake.
If you’re having one of those days where you just don’t feel like doing anything, then try a little physical activity to get your energy going. A brief walk or five minutes of yoga is often enough to do the trick.
The idea here is that exercise can increase your mental clarity and decrease stress and anxiety. It will give you time to get out of the house, refocus your thinking, and use some of the techniques discussed in chapter one to get you motivated.
Side note: unless you are used to exercising don’t go out and try to do a whole hour of intense cardio or start your first cross fit class. You’ll be too exhausted to start something new after that.
Give yourself a break
On the flip side, if you’ve had a rough week, maybe you need to take a break. Give yourself a few minutes to just chill.
My favorite way to do this is to go outside. I might sit in the shade and listen to the birds, or I might wander the garden and find interesting bugs.
Maybe you need to have a power nap or a healthy snack. Allow your body to rest and recharge. Just don’t take too long. Set yourself a timer so you don’t end up wasting an entire afternoon.
Listen to Music
Listening to some of my favorite tunes really helps me when I have to do a chore like cleaning the house. It helps distract me from the frustration of the task and allows me to have a little fun while I complete the chore.
Sing along, dance to the beat, or just let the music run for some background noise. After you get your momentum going, turn off the music if it helps you concentrate.
All of these ideas are really just ways to shift your focus away from something negative and refocus on the positive.
Use these techniques to help you shift your mindset from “I don’t want to do this” to “I can do this.”
Remember, you will have your own unique way of using these techniques. So blend them together or use another technique to help you get into a can-do attitude.
What works for you will be unique to you so experiment a little to see which methods work best, and you may be surprised to find that such simple actions can really improve your productivity.
What is your favorite technique for staying motivated?
Let me know in the comments below.