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.
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.
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.
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.