During these times, most of us are finding it extra challenging to find our drive to get things rolling. Quite simply, we are not motivated enough. Motivation involves a set of psychological forces that compel you to act. Essentially, your brain recognises something important is about to happen, and dopamine kicks in, motivating you to carry out the task.
Despite knowing the importance of a task, sometimes it can be hard to find the drive to carry it out, leading to procrastination. The uncertainty surrounding the current pandemic can make this problem even worse. There is less structure than usual, increased stress of the outbreak, and less social contact than normal making it harder to stay motivated.
While it is challenging, there are steps you can take to feel and stay motivated.
Set small daily goals: Having a far-fetched goal may not be a good idea now, instead try focusing on small goals for every day. Completing these goals may give you a sense of accomplishment, thus motivating you to do more. Try to be realistic with the goals you set. Make a small list of manageable tasks to get through every day. Small, simple goals are easier to tackle, and they ensure you to stay on track.
Maintain perspective: It is a challenging time, there are exorbitant thoughts that are probably coming to you. While your mind is constantly giving ideas and suggestions, you can take a moment to pause and remind yourself of the impermanence of the situation. Whatever the situation may be, try to focus on the positives and remind yourself that the discomfort is temporary.
Engage yourself: While it may be difficult, try to keep yourself engaged. Moderately challenging tasks are quite effective in motivation. Employing the Goldilocks rule, too easy tasks can lead to boredom and too difficult tasks can lead you to give up before trying. However, if you find yourself not being able to do a challenging task, start by doing simple tasks, that you know and have already mastered.
Spare some time for relaxation: Working from home can make it harder to get through office tasks given the distractions that are available. Scheduling when you will work and when you will relax can help you manage a healthy work-life balance. No matter what time you work, try to dedicate some time out of work, solely for relaxation.
It’s important to recognise that these are not normal times and that your productivity does not have to be at peak right now. Minimum accomplishments during these times can boost dopamine level in your brain, which will make you feel motivated to do other things as well. Staying motivated can be tricky, but you can help make it a bit easier for yourself by setting a realistic routine and taking time to care for yourself. Though this pandemic can feel like it will be never-ending, it will eventually fade away.