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5 Ways to Get Motivated When You’re Feeling Lazy

5 Ways to Get Motivated When You’re Feeling Lazy

Picture this: you have a mile-long to-do list and three hundred goals you’re working towards achieving. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything. It’s hard to stay focused and you’re just so unmotivated. Sound familiar? If your answer is yes, just know that you’re not alone.

Honestly, everyone has days like this. I know I do. Sometimes we don’t feel good, sometimes we’re feeling overwhelmed by all of the work that’s in front of us, sometimes we’re in a bad mood, or sometimes we’re just feeling lazy. But no matter why you’re feeling so unmotivated, the bottom line is that it’s a struggle – and sadly, you’re on the losing side.

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The way I look at it, you have two options on these lazy days. You can either sit around and let your to-do list mock you and cause you even more stress, or you can find ways to be productive and motivate yourself. If you choose the second option, here are some tips that you can use to get stuff done even when you just don’t feel like it.

1. Break down your big tasks

Big tasks or goals can obviously seem daunting, especially if you’re in a ‘blah’ sort of mood. So you should try to break down the big tasks into smaller ones. This will be less intimidating and more motivating. For example, if you have to create a big presentation for work, you could break that down into each step that’s involved in that process and then start working towards them. This makes the steps smaller and you’ll probably feel more motivated to complete each one of them.

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2. Get your body moving.

Sometimes, you don’t feel like doing anything because you…well, haven’t done anything. Not getting enough exercise can definitely make you feel lazy and crummy. So do some jumping jacks, jog around the block, or just walk around your house. Anything will work as long as you’re getting your blood pumping. This is a sure-fire way to give yourself more energy to get things done.

3. Just focus on one thing.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed because you just have so many tasks to do, this alone can make you feel like you don’t want to do anything. It can just destroy all of your motivation because it’s stressing you out. So if you’re feeling overwhelmed, just pick one task to work on – preferably your most important one. Just put all of your focus on that one task and get it done. Once you’ve finished it, you’ll probably find that you have motivation to work on the rest of your list. Sometimes you just have to get started.

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4. Take a break to recharge.

One of my favorite ways to motivate myself is to take a break from whatever I’m feeling so unmotivated to do and spend time doing something that makes me feel energized instead. Take some time to focus on a hobby that puts you in a good mood. When you’re done, you’ll go back to your to-do list happy and refreshed. This could give you the motivation you need to work on your less fun, ickier tasks.

5. Give yourself a reward.

Research shows that people are more likely to do a task, if they are offered an incentive for completing it. So set a reward for yourself that you only get if you complete your to-do list – or complete each task if that’s more appealing to you. Treat yourself to something that you’ve been wanting or even something small like a relaxing bath or a glass of wine. Here’s a list of over 50 ways to reward yourself for reaching your goals, if you need some ideas.

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Last Updated on April 8, 2020

Why Assuming Positive Intent Is an Amazing Productivity Driver

Why Assuming Positive Intent Is an Amazing Productivity Driver

Assuming positive intent is an important contributor to quality of life.

Most people appreciate the dividends such a mindset produces in the realm of relationships. How can relationships flourish when you don’t assume intentions that may or may not be there? And how their partner can become an easier person to be around as a result of such a shift? Less appreciated in the GTD world, however, is the productivity aspect of this “assume positive intent” perspective.

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Most of us are guilty of letting our minds get distracted, our energy sapped, or our harmony compromised by thinking about what others woulda, coulda, shoulda.  How we got wronged by someone else.  How a friend could have been more respectful.  How a family member could have been less selfish.

However, once we evolve to understanding the folly of this mindset, we feel freer and we become more productive professionally due to the minimization of unhelpful, distracting thoughts.

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The leap happens when we realize two things:

  1. The self serving benefit from giving others the benefit of the doubt.
  2. The logic inherent in the assumption that others either have many things going on in their lives paving the way for misunderstandings.

Needless to say, this mindset does not mean that we ought to not confront people that are creating havoc in our world.  There are times when we need to call someone out for inflicting harm in our personal lives or the lives of others.

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Indra Nooyi, Chairman and CEO of Pepsi, says it best in an interview with Fortune magazine:

My father was an absolutely wonderful human being. From ecent emailhim I learned to always assume positive intent. Whatever anybody says or does, assume positive intent. You will be amazed at how your whole approach to a person or problem becomes very different. When you assume negative intent, you’re angry. If you take away that anger and assume positive intent, you will be amazed. Your emotional quotient goes up because you are no longer almost random in your response. You don’t get defensive. You don’t scream. You are trying to understand and listen because at your basic core you are saying, ‘Maybe they are saying something to me that I’m not hearing.’ So ‘assume positive intent’ has been a huge piece of advice for me.

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In business, sometimes in the heat of the moment, people say things. You can either misconstrue what they’re saying and assume they are trying to put you down, or you can say, ‘Wait a minute. Let me really get behind what they are saying to understand whether they’re reacting because they’re hurt, upset, confused, or they don’t understand what it is I’ve asked them to do.’ If you react from a negative perspective – because you didn’t like the way they reacted – then it just becomes two negatives fighting each other. But when you assume positive intent, I think often what happens is the other person says, ‘Hey, wait a minute, maybe I’m wrong in reacting the way I do because this person is really making an effort.

“Assume positive intent” is definitely a top quality of life’s best practice among the people I have met so far. The reasons are obvious. It will make you feel better, your relationships will thrive and it’s an approach more greatly aligned with reality.  But less understood is how such a shift in mindset brings your professional game to a different level.

Not only does such a shift make you more likable to your colleagues, but it also unleashes your talents further through a more focused, less distracted mind.

More Tips About Building Positive Relationships

Featured photo credit: Christina @ wocintechchat.com via unsplash.com

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