When I switched on the morning news this morning, I wasn’t entirely surprised that we are facing what has been dubbed “the most depressing day of the year” – aka Blue Monday.
Why wasn’t I surprised?
Well, I’ve been feeling a bit down in the dumps lately (it HAS been raining pretty much constantly all year). And this morning I was woken up at 5.30am by my next-door-neighbour’s little girl (“Mummy, mummy, I want a wee… Mummy! Daddy! MUMMYYYYYYYY!”).
Having failed to go back to sleep, I was a bit drowsy when getting up, and so gashed my leg on the stupidly designed bedstead (it has ridiculously sharp edges that stick out a mile). I avoided – marginally – falling over the dog (who seemed a little moody, not like him). But I ended up spilling coffee all over the sofa (cream, as it happens) as I my hands suddenly became unaware that they have to co-operate with my cognitive functioning.
All in all, not a good start to the day.
So when I sat down to write this blog post, I felt a) frustrated, b) lacking in motivation and c) a bit sorry for myself. I just didn’t have the energy. I just wasn’t ‘bovurd’. The constant yawning and blinking eyes (trying to wake myself up!) didn’t help.
So what do you do for motivation when you can’t quite ‘ready’ yourself up for the work day ahead?
Here is what works for me…
1. I’ll throw myself into some other activity such as yoga or even filing! Anything to make you take a break from that which is getting me down. Actually, the thought of filing is usually enough to get me started on whatever task it is I’m procrastinating on!
2. Breaking a seemingly overwhelmingly huge task into smaller chunkshelps makes things more manageable.
3. Starting with the bit I like best. For the blog writing, it’s usually reviewing reader input. That makes it all seem worthwhile, and can trigger an idea for a great post.
4. Focusing on what reward I can give myself when I’ve completed the task in hand is, for me, a HUGE motivator.
5. Remembering the reasons why I started this business in the first place also keeps me slogging forward. Seems to do the trick.
6. Sometimes, it’s simply a question of trying to get those irksome ‘roundabout’ thoughts out of my head and onto paper. Seeing challenges in black and white somehow offers clarity and calms the mind. Well, it does for me, anyway!
7. And if things get really tough, I’ll phone a friend for a good brainstorm to get those creative juices flowing.
Something that I haven’t tried yet, but I plan on doing so soon (there’s that evil procrastinator tendency again) is creating a ‘dream board’.
You get yourself a big piece of cardboard (about A3 size, so you can’t really not see it!) and pin onto it pictures of what you want to achieve or have in your life. For example, there might be a picture of a really nice self-build in a picturesque setting, with fields and sea surrounding it. There could be a horse. A few donkeys. A happy family. A scene of some far-flung place you want to visit… That kind of thing.
Then you place it somewhere you can see it throughout the day. Above your computer is a good location.
Apparently, by looking at it every day and imagining you already have those things on the board, you set yourself in motion to do whatever it takes to get there.
Finally, one more motivator that is bound to work: Looking at your bank balance. Cruel, but effective. ;-)
What about you? Do share your motivators with me and readers of this blog. Oh, go on…
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