Working Transitions

The Rio comedown. How to keep motivated in the workplace after success.

For many sports stars, it has not just been the pinnacle of their career, but of their life.  They have competed in the greatest show on earth.  After years of blood, sweat and tears, they have made it – they are Olympians and for some they are also medallists.

So when the plane touches down in London and they are not surrounded by the atmosphere and adulation, how will these sporting heroes motivate themselves when they have to get up early on a damp morning and head to a swimming pool, lake, or track?

Of course it is not just sporting stars that have to cope with this. In many workplaces similar things are happening. Following huge success (could be a contract win, best sales figures, a great piece of PR, a project that has gone well, recognition etc.) the lull follows.

Almost any working professional will understand the feeling of not having the motivation and energy to do the work that needs to be done on any given day. However, a sustained lack of motivation can hold you back, and for this reason it is vital that you are able to work through it and find that little seed of enthusiasm which will help to power you through the project that you need to complete. These tips will help you to do just that, and this means that you should always be able to find the motivation that you need, no matter what it is that needs to be done.

Set up the perfect working environment

When you’re working, what stops you from succeeding? Do you find that you spend too much time looking out of the window? Or is there too much clutter that you find distracting? By taking the time to build your working environment into something that suits you, you will find that you are much more likely to work to your best potential, without feeling that you are being held back by things around you. If something in your environment is playing on your mind, this can be incredibly distracting, and for this reason it is vital that you eliminate these distractions as soon as possible.

Consider the task as part of a long term goal

Everything that you do at work is done for a reason and, usually, it will contribute to your career progression in some way. By thinking about it like this, rather than considering it just as something that you really don’t want to do, it should help you to find the energy to give it your all, rather than it being something that you’re dreading.

Work in short bursts

If you have a particularly long task to do, try to split it into smaller portions. For example, if you work on it for ten minutes, then move onto something else, and keep alternating until you have finished, you should find that you are able to come back to it with a fresh mind each and every time. It can help if you are able to get a little exercise in between each part of work that you complete – though understandably this can be difficult to achieve in many working environments.

Split the work up into individual goals

It is important to have something to work towards while you’re completing a task, and if the task is large then the end result may simply seem too far away to motivate you. Instead, you should set smaller goals, and reward yourself each time you complete one. By doing this, you should find that you are more motivated to finish the work that you need to do, without losing heart. By celebrating every time something goes right in the project, you will feel much better about sitting down and thinking about the rest of it.

Know when to clock off, and make the most of your down time

It can be very tempting to take work home with you when you have an impending deadline, and overworking is a trap that many fall into. However, doing this may simply leave you demotivated and tired, meaning that your performance levels may fall. Instead, you should set a time that you will force yourself to stop working each day, and then go to do something that you enjoy, for example swimming, walking or meeting up with friends. Taking time out of your day to focus your mind on other interests is absolutely vital.

Don’t focus on tiny issues

You may find that you are constantly thinking about one or two things that bring you down – but the question that you should ask yourself is whether or not they really matter in the grand scheme of things. Often, we can find ourselves so tied up in the small details that we forget to see the bigger picture, and this can be distracting when we are trying to get a task done.

Remember there is no such thing as failure

Worrying about failing, or getting something wrong, is a key reason that people may struggle to find the motivation to do well in a project. However, if you think about it as a learning curve rather than as simply right or wrong, you should be able to use the project as a way to develop your skills as a professional.

Ultimately, motivation is what gets us through every single day, and for this reason it is vital that we are able to find it. These tips will certainly help to keep you on track and, in the long term, you should find that it is exactly what you need to be able to excel at any projects that are handed to you.

Motivation will result in a better output and attitude.  Ultimately this is what will translate into better career opportunities. So motivation is not just about the here and now, it is also about future proofing your career. Now, who wants to head to the cycle track tomorrow at 5.30am………..

 

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Author
Working Transitions
Date
31 August 2016
Categories
Careers
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