Not Motivated Enough? Here's Why

Mental Health
Workplace Issues
21 Oct 2022

Some days at work are really long and we’d rather be doing literally anything else than sit around and get some work done. There’s nothing driving us to complete our tasks, let alone stay in the office space. These sort of downer days happen to the best of us, and it’s a lot more common than one tends to believe. It has nothing to do with who you are as a person or even what you do for work. 

We always have some days where we end up procrastinating a bit too much, lack focus entirely, and even struggle to complete the simplest of tasks—tasks we’d otherwise complete in a heartbeat. You will then start to beat yourself up over the lack of determination, ask yourself what went wrong without quietly addressing what could really be happening, and stay disappointed. You’ll end up feeling worse when you know that there’s work to be done and you still don’t feel like moving a muscle. 

We have days when we lack enthusiasm, and even one such day at work can be very demotivating. This feeling of not being motivating can result in burnout, and eventually, you will be wallowed with guilt for not doing your job. This not only affects an individual professionally, but one’s mental health will also be put under tremendous strain. Not only will it hinder your ability to concentrate, but a cloud of negativity around yourself will envelop you and will shadow your performance.

However, there are sure-fire ways of moving past this slump of a feeling. All you need is a bit of time to think for yourself, and a few steps that can help you push yourself out of this rut. The first step is to understand why this has happened. 

You’re just too busy

There’s something going around these days about being busy. Even if the society now thinks being busy is ‘cool’ or even something to be proud of, being busy all the time can be incredibly damaging. There are those who constantly believe that their productivity is directly proportional to being busy, and there’s no telling them anything but. 

However, being busy all the time can definitely lead to burnout. 

One can believe as much as they want that being busy is great and that they are being productive in society’s standards, but this will slide down to you hating your job faster than you can say ‘burnout’.

So, how do you get past being busy? This is how you’ve been working for as long as you know. What can you do to change that? Prioritize. As brutally as you can. Is there a task? Is it urgent? No? Then take care of it later when you can afford to. Get to the most important tasks first, invest in something that is of optimum importance. You will slowly have to slide yourself away from being a busy bee and take what’s only yours. This includes leaving out other people’s responsibilities for them. 

Learn to say ‘no’ more often, and when you take on a task then be sure of what you are asking for. Change the way you think because this can have a great impression on how you are invariably treating yourself too. ‘I have to’ has a slave’s ring to it, try saying, ‘I choose to’ instead. Changing words like these might not sound like much, but they shape the way you think and present yourself and therefore, you’re giving yourself the choice to complete something.

Where there’s a will, there’s not always a way

We truly believe willpower is everything, but the problem here isn’t about willpower alone. For writers, they wait for inspiration or a call to strike, and some writers don’t even focus on work until something like that happens. And when one waits for something to hit them from an external source, chances are they might not occur at all.

Telling yourself that willpower will motivate you on its own is something only someone naive would do. You are making things extra difficult for yourself if you are waiting for willpower to hit you externally. What we understand as ‘starting trouble’ is something almost everyone in the world faces, and to begin sometimes we just have to… begin. There’s no waiting around for willpower to come and do the trick and let us have the best start to a complicated project. Sometimes, the best starts are the slow, dreaded ones. 

What you can do here instead of waiting around for willpower like Prince Charming, is to do small things that can keep your motivation intact. For instance, if you’ve been assigned a task to finish, just try to focus on getting started. The start is usually the hardest part of the entire situation, and once the start is tackled with, then the way is paved. You will start your anxiety for the lack of motivation strain away with just that attempt. 

You could also do things that could assist you in getting started. You can take a small chai/smoke break and return, rejuvenated to begin again. Just kickstart yourself into a professional state of mind. 

You’re emotionally burned out

Being emotionally burned out is quite a dark place to be in, for anybody. But, you’re not alone. There might be a lot of things going on in someone’s life, and keeping everything in check can be a task on its own. Despite everything, people come to work to finish tasks as if nothing’s wrong and sometimes, just sometimes, it can get too much. 

It is very important to address a person’s mental state of being when they’re working, this is because mental health plays a crucial role in a person’s performance and activities at work. For a successful team to function, it’s highly essential that they practice psychological safety. This is ensuring that the workplace is safe for people on an emotional level, where they can primarily just focus on work and have nothing on an emotional scale to worry about.

This is maintained when employees can share a space free of rejection, harassment, or lack of confidence in speaking up. The only way one can heal past an emotional slump is when you can incorporate a healthy amount of social activities into your life. Go early to meetings, try to speak to your colleagues in a healthy manner. These small chats are not without meaning, they carry a lot more importance in an overall scale for your mental health. You can invariably build your relationship with your colleagues by doing this, too. 

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