“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts!”
I decided to write today’s post because it is something I dealt with this weekend and it felt fresh to me. As a wife, mother, friend and business professional I am sure you can imagine how many things need to be accomplished on a daily basis. I’m not complaining, it’s just busy.
Yesterday in Salt Lake was a gorgeous, hot day, and for some reason after I had made lunch I didn’t feel like doing anything else. Dishes needed to be done, I had bought some string lights for my patio that needed putting up, I needed to clean my closet to get rid of some clothes that I didn’t wear anymore, and the list goes on. So here’s what happened, after I had made the lunch I sat down and felt so mentally exhausted that I didn’t even pick up my phone and check social media – I started to wonder if I was coming down with something. As I talked to Brandon I realized a few things:
- I feel guilty if I am not doing something.
- I beat myself up for being “lazy” rather than allowing myself to relax.
- I sometimes create things to do just so I am busy.
- Even when I’m not actually physically doing something I am thinking about or creating a list of the things I can do next.
- I don’t allow myself to take time for myself, or even if I do I feel like I have to explain or justify why even to myself!
- I want so badly to be the best at so many things that I end up not finishing things and spreading myself too thin.
- When I see other people not doing things it makes me think they are lazy because everyone should be moving, right?!
- I want so badly to be better every time I do something that I sometimes over-think and don’t end up taking any action.
I know this may seem like a crazy list, definitely not logical AND counter productive, but I wanted to share it with you for a couple of reasons. Firstly, because I have found that when I put something out there, I can no longer hide from it and I have to face it. Secondly, because I bet I am not the only one that experiences these things, and perhaps knowing that you’re not crazy and someone else has similar struggles to you can make it easier to work on.
I have found in my life that when I am open, vulnerable and not afraid to let people know about my struggles or weaknesses, I very often find that others can relate and that has helped me overcome many things.
So, when you don’t feel motivated or feel mentally exhausted, how is the best way to handle it? Here’s what I did…I went on a bike ride to get my energy going (exercise always helps me), and then after a little discussion with my amazing coach of a husband, I realized that it’s OK to sit down and just chill for a little bit. I allowed myself some time to just sit there with my thoughts, and not the creating a list kind of thoughts, but just appreciations, gratitude and peaceful thoughts…and here’s the most important part – I didn’t let myself feel guilty for not doing something! I allocated a small amount of time to just be there, and then I resolved to take a small action rather than creating a huge list that was overwhelming and trying to undertake that.
There are definitely going to be days where motivation doesn’t come naturally, even if you are an over-achiever there will be days where you are just not in the right frame of mind or you feel exhausted or sick. With that being said, it doesn’t mean that you can’t still accomplish what you need to do, because motivation can be created. If you look at athletes, I am sure every one of them has an “off day”, but whether they like it or not, they have to show up and play. It’s also like that as a mother – you don’t get to take a day off…your kids need you, and quite honestly you need them.
I have found for me the first thing you need to create motivation is a ROUTINE – having a certain way that I do things, or just scheduling the time to do it. I love sitting in my office because I have created an environment that I love to be in, and work just seems to flow. My routine has me get up and get dressed – it’s that simple. I have always admired those that have home offices and work in their PJ’s because I know that wouldn’t do it for me. I have to be dressed and feeling/looking professional. Whatever your routine is it just needs to start with something simple, something so easy to do that you can’t talk yourself out of it. It could be something as simple as sitting grabbing some water before you start any task – that way, the water will lead you to think that productivity is the next natural step.
The next step is to take a physical action or become engaged – mine is leaving the house. Going to my office and getting moving. I noticed yesterday when I wasn’t feeling motivated my body language was very lax…I was laying on the couch, I was moving slowly and it most definitely wasn’t an action mindset or engaged mindsetGet motivated
The final step is to use the same pattern every time. Again, your pattern is your pattern, so create something that is recognizable for you. Use it every time you take the action…so that when you need the motivation, the actions just flow and the motivation will come because you are doing what you always do!
My routine this morning was definitely different than yesterday and I am already noticing that my motivation is back – mainly because I used my same routine, I took action and I did I like I always do!
Monday has traditionally been a hard day for motivation – I hear lots of people talking about how they hate Mondays and that it sucks to go back to work…so this Monday, why not look at it from another perspective. Why not recognize the amazing things you have in this life and feel grateful for the opportunity to be doing what you’re doing – things can change in an instant!