Get motivated: 6 ways to get the job done
Sometimes it’s hard to find enough motivation to get out of bed in the morning, never mind actually trying to achieve something with your day.
It’s a vicious circle, though – the less you do, the less you believe you’re capable of doing. Once you push yourself to get a few things done, you’ll create a positive impetus which will make other tasks easier.
If you’re stuck for ways to get motivated, try these:
1. Set yourself ridiculously easy goals
If you don’t feel you can find the energy to do something, break the task down into tiny steps which you can achieve. For example, if you can’t get motivated to tidy your bedroom, a list of jobs like ‘Put 5 items in the laundry basket’ is much more achievable. If you can’t push yourself to write that book, challenge yourself to write just 50 words.
2. Reward yourself for every small achievement
Sometimes, just being able to check off completed jobs on a list is enough, but if you find your motivation flagging,
If you have a long task, build in tiny rewards to motivate yourself. For instance, if you have a dauntingly-long form to fill out, get a pack of M&Ms and ‘earn’ one for each part you complete.
To encourage yourself to complete longer tasks, you could have small rewards with a larger reward at the end.
3. Mix and match boring tasks
If you have a long, dull job to do, give yourself some variety by choosing something different to do alongside it. Switch from one activity to the other, such as doing a large pile of ironing bit by bit in between tidying rooms.
4. Limit unproductive time
If you keep sneaking away from what you should be doing to ‘just watch one TV programme’ for 3 hours, or you don’t get any housework done because your new book is so fascinating that you keep going off to read a few more pages, you’re not alone!
Set yourself a time limit – use a kitchen timer if necessary – and then get back to work.
5. Avoid displacement activities
If, like me, you’re an expert on work avoidance strategies, you’ll have to be strict with yourself. I made a chart of Productive Activities – the ones that earn me money – which has helped me to focus my priorities for the working day.
Tidying your desk and designing a beautiful colour-coded Study Timetable on your computer is not time spent studying. Folding the towels in the airing cupboard is something you do after the house is tidy.
The internet is full of wonderful distractions. If you have work to do on your computer, you could easily waste half a day just checking your emails, updating your Facebook status or choosing your Mum’s birthday present on Ebay… and don’t get me started on Candy Crush Saga!
6. If you can’t get motivated alone, work with a partner
Working with other people means there’s less to do, you’ll have a few laughs along the way and a bit of tough love when you need it.
It’s much easier to give up halfway through a job when you’re struggling alone. Sharing the task with a friend makes it harder to slope off and watch TV while they’re still working. Choose someone who’ll kick your butt if you try that!