7 Tricks to Kickstart Motivation at Work

//7 Tricks to Kickstart Motivation at Work


7 Tricks to Kickstart Motivation at Work

Man yawning due to lack of motivation at work

Hello Bored Employee 👋

I know why you’re reading this and believe me, I feel your pain. There’s nothing worse than feeling unmotivated to do the work you know you should be doing. It’s a cocktail of boredom, anxiety, and a pinch of self-loathing – I’d rather a mojito.

Motivation is like a rollercoaster; some days we feel like a boss and on others, we’ll do anything at all to avoid getting to the task at hand.

Lacking motivation isn’t just bad for productivity. It has repercussions for mental health and confidence. After all, battling against that invisible barrier just leads to frustration and wasted time. Kicking against a wall that won’t move is good for nobody.

So we’ve put together a list of the best ways to recapture that elusive superpower, motivation.

1) Break down the task.

What is an ocean but a multitude of drops? What is a task but a multitude of smaller, more manageable tasks?

Take article writing for example.

  • One task is to gather research
  • The next is to do a very rough first copy
  • Then do a second draft
  • Then find photos
  • Then finalise your draft.

Each of those tasks is so much easier than the job as a whole.

Our brains love winning – and spending hours at a huge task before you win does not incentivise it to release those happy chemicals. 🧠

Little wins, though, spurred on by completing little tasks are a great way to build momentum. Break down the task into as many small steps as you can think of, write them down on a piece of paper, and tick them off one by one as you run through them – you’ll find it’s much easier to complete the next one.

2) Pair it with little rewards.

Make some coffee. Message a friend. Take a stroll outside. 🏃‍♀️

Contemplating the day’s incoming 8-hour tsunami of work before the light at the end of the tunnel is a surefire way to extinguish any motivation you woke up with.

Making time for periods of fun here and there will take away the hesitancy to start your 8 hours of work because, hey, it’s only 1 hour until you get to go and check up on how your well your favourite sports team performed.

3) Don’t force it.

Sometimes there will come a moment when fingers just won’t touch the keyboard, the pencil won’t hit the paper, and the computer won’t be turned on. It’s similar to when you try to push two similar poles of magnets together – they’ll slip and slide everywhere else but they simply won’t meet.

You’re just pouring your time down the drain. Give it some space. 🌌

There are undoubtedly other tasks which would be worthwhile spending the time on, and that your brain won’t refuse to do. Similar to the first point, try knocking out a few smaller tasks to get the ball rolling. That little burst of satisfaction from getting a small task done might be just the spark you need to get working on this one.

And when you do get back to it, try…

4) The 123 Method.

Newton’s first law of motion is surprisingly applicable to work-life – Things in motion tend to stay in motion.

Starting is the hardest part but once the ball is rolling, it tends to keep rolling.

A great way to start is the 123 method. Simply counting down from 123 and starting on three no matter what is a great little trick to get your brain into gear.

5) Minimise decisions

We have a limited focus for daily decision-making. This is called decision fatigue.

Each tiny choice we make depletes that resource. If your workday begins with choosing what you’re doing that day, you’ve already spent a sizeable chunk of mental energy on a task that isn’t contributing to your productivity.

By planning your work the day or week before, and thinking about tomorrow’s work the evening before softens your brain to the idea of doing it. It becomes a manageable chunk, not a never-ending list.

Man looking small underneath huge milky way

Photo by Greg Rakozy on Unsplash

6) Think of the big picture.

Often it’s easy to lose track of how the task you’re working on contributes to your higher goals. But chances are if you’re working on it, it is.

Take a moment to visualise where you want to be. Then retrace the dots all the way back to show how the task you’re doing contributes to that bigger picture.

Most likely it will only be in a tiny way, but knowing that it is a step to climbing higher up that mountain is a great way to remove mental barriers.

(Psst, we have a great tool to help with this! Check out the Wheel Of Life 🥳)

7) Remember, every little helps.

If you can genuinely not get yourself to do the thing, just do the very beginning.

You’ve got a painful email to draft? Write a sandpaper-rough copy (leaving out the recipient’s email) and save it until tomorrow – you might find one or two lines are worth keeping. Or a job application to nail – just put in your contact details. It will mean tomorrow you can jump into the creative part without wasting energy on inputting your address.


Final thoughts on motivation at work…

It’s entirely normal to lack motivation some days, but working in a role you enjoy should be inherently motivating. If you’re finding you’re consistently lacking the motivation to work then it’s time to make a change.

👉Why not get in touch?