So many people have told me recently that they are feeling unmotivated. And, I get it.
We are living in unprecedented times. Covid19 has reduced our freedom of movement, changed how we socialise, altered our working lives, changed how we school our children, and at this stage, we don’t know if or when normality will return. In essence, we are living a new normal; however, this new normal brings a lot of uncertainty, stress and anxiety.
Overnight our daily structures and goals went into disarray, and this has led many of us to have days and weeks of feeling “up and down”. One day we may feel great and purposeful to only a few short days later, a feeling of melancholy creeps in, leading us to think what is the point? The up and down feeling produced by not knowing what the future will look like has caused many of us to feel unmotivated. Combine this feeling with the distractions that we are surrounded with at home, where many of us are now working, and a double whammy hits our motivation.
So, what immediate steps can we take to renew our vigour, navigate a new direction & get motivated again?
COMMIT TO CHANGE
The first step is committing to ourselves that we are no longer satisfied with feeling up and down, stagnating and feeling stuck in a rut.
This may sound easy; however, it’s not – because when we have no energy and are feeling unmotivated, our initial commitment may only last 5 minutes until the next distraction or feeling of hopelessness creeps up into our psyche.
To mitigate this, we need to hold ourselves accountable for the changes we want to make. And one of the best and easiest ways to do this is by creating a commitment pledge of what we intend to do which affirms and reaffirms our commitment to change.
Write out a commitment pledge and put it in your wallet, on your wall or somewhere that you can see it often.
Refer to the below examples of commitment pledges:
I am committed to refraining from what does not serve me.
I am committed to not watching the news or viewing social media.
I am committed to eating healthily and exercising.
I am committed to getting 8 hours of sleep each night.
I am committed to establishing a daily routine.
Read the commitment pledge to yourself 3 x a day; once on rising, once in the afternoon and once again before going to bed. Alternatively, read the pledge into a voice recorder and listen to it 3 x a day. Set a timer to go off throughout the day to remind you to read or listen to your pledge.
The act of reaffirming your commitment each day re-programs your brain into believing and acting on what you are intending. And, eventually, with time and action, your commitment will become second nature, which will help you to become motivated.
ESTABLISH A DAILY ROUTINE
Without a daily routine, our thoughts of what’s the point can become exacerbated because the lack of structure gives us time to ruminate on what isn’t working in our lives. This then makes it hard for us to get focussed; which causes a lack of motivation and impacts our productivity.
Establish a daily routine by writing down and mapping out a schedule for your day and ensure that you stick to your plan. Some things that you may wish to include in your daily routine are:
Establishing daily routines benefits our health and wellbeing, keeps us focused and productive and helps us to form good habits. This is because having a routine gives us a sense of control which is particularly important during these challenging times.
With all this said, it is essential to remember that contrary to popular belief, it doesn’t take 21 days to form a habit (this is a myth) but 66 days according to research conducted by University College London. Therefore, it is essential to give yourself a break if your commitment to the above ebbs and flows initially. With time, eventually, it will get easier, and your motivations will increase.
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