This week I had two different conversations about motivation on the same day. I knew it was a theme that people were thinking about.
The first conversation was between me and my personal trainer Sian. My motivation for running had dropped during the launch of the 5 Day Newsletter Fix and I knew I needed to do something to get it back.
The second was with a friend who is launching a really exciting part of their business and they needed the support to just get going with it! As well as a social media plan, he said he needed some motivation too, to give him the confidence to get started.
I think most of us can relate to that!
Now while both of these things might be different, I think theres lots of similarities in the way we work with it and the tools we can use to get motivation back in all parts of our life.
Whether it’s work, marketing, exercise, relationships, cleaning the house, training the dog, staying organised or keeping up with a hobby you love, sometimes we just need a little boost to get us going again.
One of the things Sian said to me on Wednesday was - 'It’s better to be consistently good than sporadically perfect' and I loved that message.
It applies to my marathon training but also to my marketing.
When you’re promoting your business, no one is looking for perfect. It’s better to show up online saying ‘umm’ and ‘ahh’ than to not show up at all.
It’s better to put out a picture which might not be your finest photography work, but clearly gets your message across.
It’s better to get a first draft of a blog post or newsletter written, than to write nothing at all.
Sometimes when we are procrastinating on something it’s not because we don’t want to do it, we just need to get the excitement back around it.
If you’ve been lacking in motivation and you want to get your mojo back, here are a few tools that I’ve used which can be applied to so many different things.
Tip 1 - Change the Location
When we do the same thing day in day out it can get really repetitive, is it any wonder we lose motivation for it?
While it’s helpful to be repetitive when it comes to forming a habit, sometimes we just need to shake things up!
On Friday I went for my longest run so far, 18km! The reason I was able to go further? I changed the route.
For the last few weeks when I’d been running I’d been using the same route, sometimes running around the Knap 10 times just to get the distance in. It was flat and really easy, but it wasn’t exciting anymore.
Changing the route to a place I had never run to before made it exciting and new and I couldn’t wait to get started to see how it went!
If you’re losing motivation for something, do it somewhere new.
We might not be able to sit inside our favourite coffee shops to work at the moment, but you can still get that different space feeling by working from another room, moving your desk or even sitting outside to work instead.
Pick a task that you can do without internet, grab a takeaway drink and sit in the sunshine while we still have it to work away.
Or if you are trying to think of ideas for a project and you’re hitting a wall, go and walk somewhere new and take a podcast (maybe this one!) and let yourself get creative again.
Sometimes an hour of two is enough to shake that feeling off and once you get started it’s so much easier to keep working.
Tip 2 - Change the Habit
One of my pet hates is the phrase ‘but that’s the way we’ve always done it’
It stops businesses from trying new things, growing and testing a better or more efficient way of working. Even if you try something new and it just enforces that the original way of working was better, I would rather have tried than stayed the same!
If you’re loosing motivation for something you’ve been doing all the time then can you really blame yourself?
Shake things up!
When it came to my run I decided to switch from the weekend or evenings and get up early on Friday to get it done. It made such a difference, the air was cooler, it wasn’t busy, I didn’t have to worry about getting everything done before I went.
Change can be a very good thing.
If you’re struggling with your social media marketing, try looking at if differently.
If you usually plan posts at your laptop but you find yourself staring at a blank screen, put the laptop down, get a big sheet of paper and pens and plan it out by hand.
If you’re struggle to come up with a solution to a problem, don’t just sit there thinking about it. Call a friend or go for a walk to talk it through.
If you’re bored of cooking the same meals, doing the same dog walks, cleaning the same rooms in the house, then do something different.
I just bought the Green Roasting Tin cookbook and I have decided to never clean the house again so we are winning in this house!
Just kidding, but actually that does bring me onto another tip.
Tip 3 - Do it just for a little bit
I am not a tidy person. My desk is messy, my house is messy and it has taken a long time for me to get a plan that works when it comes to cleaning.
One of my favourite tips which can be used for just about anything is setting a 10 minute timer.
When it comes to tidying I call it the 10 minute tidy up, you set an alarm on your phone and do 10 minutes in each room. When it goes off you have to stop and move onto the next one.
Sometimes rooms take me less than 10 minutes when I’m on top of things, sometimes I make a mental note of things that I need to do later when I have more time.
But by just thinking to myself - I can do 10 minutes surely? It kicks me into action and makes me get started.
This could be applied to so many different things.
For today’s run I planned to just run to the bollard that was part of my running group's challenge.
By the time I got there I felt good so I decided to carry on.
When I want to write some social media content I just do it for 10 minutes and almost all of the time that is enough to make me keep going. This tip works for almost anything that involves writing and it really helps to get you in the mood when you just don’t feel like it.
The feeling of getting it done is usually enough to make me want to carry on and start it again easily next time.
If you’re feeling unmotivated or you just want to change things up in the way that you work or another part of your life, try one of these tips and see how you get on.