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Published on October 22, 2018

What to Do When You Lose Your Motivation in the Workplace

What to Do When You Lose Your Motivation in the Workplace

The first thought that strikes most of us at the thought of any work is how perilous it is and how we wish that we could just quit it. Remember the good old times when you first started your job, that feeling in the stomach, and the nervousness?

The attitude and motivation that surged within you at that time was unbeatable. You would quip yourself to stand ahead in the line to be the first to do anything and everything. All you wanted at that time was to be in the good books of your seniors and make a name for yourself.

Surely, not more than one per cent of us feel the same, one year into the same job, for which we interviewed with all keen interest one day. Have you ever stopped to wonder why is that the case? Why is it that a job role that once excited you beyond imagination and thrilled you to the very core, eventually turns into a monotonous activity that you have to indulge in, simply for the sake of earning the bucks? Why do you start to lose motivation in the workplace?

Advancing in the career comes with a lot of hard work and an attitude that cannot be found in many. The same attitude might convey to your seniors that you are here to make a difference in the organization and that you actually care about the good and bad of your organization. Your attitude and initiative towards the activities happening in the organization directly displays your willingness to lead the organization towards success.

However, what happens between the very first day of your work and a year later is a story which makes the whole difference and brings us to this topic.

Over time, people tend to get comfortable at a place where they are and they start taking things for granted. People tend to float along with the pace of work in your organization and rather than taking the initiative, their approach turns to dealing with what comes their way.

At the same time, most of us still continue to dream big and wish to stand apart from the rest but the motivation to do so starts fading. Let us discuss some tell tale signs which sing the story of a person who has lost his spark at his work place.

Sure Shot Signs That You Are Losing Motivation

Take a clear look at these signs and try to identify if you fall in any one of them. If yes, it might be time for you to boost yourself and charge ahead with better initiative at the workplace.

1. No ideas come from you

No matter how less you think of yourself, you know it very well how you used to come up with ideas when the situation demanded, how you used to relay your alternatives to your superiors in the hopes of being noticed and falling straight in their good books.

One year later in the same job, if you feel that you have lost that zeal and going with the flow feels better, then it’s time for you to accept that you have lost the motivation at your work place. This could be because your ideas were not accepted earlier or that you had to face a lot of resistance after giving your idea, which might make you feel as though it is an unnecessary step which will take you through a lot of trouble.

It is common to get such thoughts but what is more important to understand is the fact that if you stop taking such initiatives, not only are you going to put yourself behind among your fellow peers but you are also going to run out of job satisfaction while you watch others move ahead with their ideas.

At times, it might be completely satisfying to watch yourself going freely with the work flow but in the long run, accept it that it will hurt your sentiment to watch others do what you used to do at a time.

2. Staying mum even when you disagree

Fresh at your job, it is quite common to feel like you want yourself to be heard and step ahead in the ranks by way of your opinions. Speaking up and voicing your opinion seems to be one way by which you can make yourself known in an organization.

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However, sometimes, when your voice does not get heard, or gets drowned among a horde of other voices or else, faces rejection in the name of being negative or unworthy, you might feel as though your effort was for nothing. So it might often happen that even though you continue to voice your concerns and express your opinion about something, no one might actually take your voice for its face value and move ahead with the idea anyway.

A direct effect of this situation can manifest as an uncompetitive feeling within you, where you feel that it is quite unworthy to quip for improvement of an idea. Your attitude changes to let them do it if they want, what have I got to lose?

It is common to feel this way and might even sound justified but you know it, it doesn’t make any sense. If you won’t look out for the best interest of your team mates, then who will?

3. You are not updating yourself

Another sure shot way to identify your lack of interest in the workplace is when everyone around you is learning to stay updated but you are lagging behind.

You tend to avoid attending seminars, functions and conferences where important decisions are being made, or else, someone is brought upon to divulge certain knowledge. You tend to feel that these activities are worthless and not worth your time.

Again, this has to do with feeling too comfortable with your current job role. As long as you are able to get things done, you do not feel the need to update yourself with the latest happenings around you.

Without even realizing that you are putting yourself behind everyone else, this behavior continues unless something tells you that you need to move forward.

4. Lack of initiative

Fresh on the job, you used to take the first opportunity that could put you in the good books with the seniors and make you a known personality in the organization. You were always bubbling with ideas and jousting for attention whenever you could seek the chance.

Meeting deadlines was never a trouble for you because you were always ahead of them and came up with your work before time.

Having settled into the routine, you feel that it is no longer necessary to be as active as before and being comfortable is more important for you. The problem with this comfort is that you never realize when it turns into a lazy habit and before you even know it, you have completely adopted it as a way of how things should be done.

Now, things keep piling in front of you and you still take that as a given feature of your job role, basically being okay and comfortable with whatever keeps coming your way.

5. No motivation to advance in the career

With little control over what you are presently doing in your job, you lack direction about where you are headed and where you seek yourself in the coming one or so years.

You are completely letting the work flow guide your direction and tackling things only if they come your way. Other than that, there is no motivation on your part to try something new or to carve out new career opportunities on your own.

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These are just few of the major events which are certainly indicating one thing: you have completely lost it in your workplace and you have let your comfort get the best of you.

Now, you are not as keen as you used to be before and things are best the way they are. So the question that springs up over here is, should you allow this behavior and attitude to breed within you, is it healthy for your career or do you really need to do something about it? Let us try to find out.

Why people lose their motivation at work

This does not need a lot of thinking or explanation. The reasons are quite obvious, if not staring you straight in the face. Take a look at the following events:

  • You are never heard in your organization. Your peers and superiors are a group of douchebags who take pride in being above you, or rejecting your ideas and suggestions each time. Even if your take on a situation is worthy enough of being heard, your voice is simply quashed blatantly and rejected.
  • You are always rejected with your ideas and suggestions being termed as useless and unworthy.
  • Your ideas are stolen and the credit for the same is given to someone else every time.
  • You are not allowed to speak or come forward with ideas when the time calls.
  • You are left out of important decisions and meetings, making you feel dejected or unwanted in an organization.
  • You feel as though you are a victim of window dressing as your ideas are always thrown away, even after being credible enough to support decision making.

These are just few of the circumstances under which it is common to feel at a loss of motivation to continue in your current job role or to be as active with your work. As a result, over time, people tend to lose their interest and motivation with their current work and fall prey to their lethargic comfort.

Under such circumstances, it is common to fall behind in the career and get too comfortable with the flow of things. The attitude turns from an action oriented and engaging one, to facing what comes your way.

Slowly, a job which mattered to you so much at one time, for which you toiled hard to work at, becomes a looming monotony which just keeps dragging day on day.

The question which we need to address here is, what to do when you fall prey to such loss?

What to do when your current job role does not motivate you any longer?

Unless you are too happy and comfortable in the place where you are, you would obviously want to get rid of the dull and gloomy feeling of lacking the right motivation.

Here’re some quick ways to get you off the hook and help you sway in the right direction:

1. Remember the first time you entered this place

It helps to recall the reason why you started something in the first place. Nothing works better as a motivation than reminding yourself why you are doing this and what got you started in this direction.

Gove yourself ample dose of the memories and events from your first few days at your work place. Recall how you used to feel energetic and engaged when you came forward with your ideas. Boost yourself with the memories of the time when you were given credit for your suggestions and everyone applauded your work.

Nothing works better at boosting your motivation than your own thoughts. Use it to your advantage and remind yourself that you can still be at that place, only if you came out of your comfort zone and made a little more effort.

Trust me, it will pay you in the long run to get off the hook right now and make a run for the limelight, just like your old days.

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2. Give yourself credit for being where you are

You worked a lot to get to this place and earn this job position which has killed you to boredom today, isn’t it? Remind yourself of the days of preparation that it took to come for an interview with your superiors and to be selected amidst that curiosity and anxiousness.

Remember the butterflies which stopped you from eating anything until you heard the results of the interview and got selected. You did a great job at being selected for this job role, which anyone would kill to have.

Respect the fact and start working in the capacity that you are capable of. It will reward you dearly in the long run for sure.

Reward your excitement from the first day at work and try to inculcate the same excitement, every single day when you step into your work place. Work will become more rewarding and exciting once you adopt that ideology.

3. Write down what troubles you

If you have no one around at your workplace to whom you can turn and explain your turmoil, perhaps it is a good idea to put it down on paper.

Bash about the problems and troubles you are facing in the workplace and write down why you want to get out of them. You might come across the problem area once you try and adopt this piece of advice after all.

After this, shun out anything that sounds irrelevant and focus on the positive aspects which can help you improve and remove the obstacles from your job satisfaction.

4. Connect

When boredom and monotony take over in work life, it becomes quite obvious to seek out what others around you are doing or how they are performing. If not competitive, the one way in which you can see this phenomenon is to feel motivated from those whom you admire, or whose work seems to impress you.

You are probably looking at people who seem to be performing better at work than you or who are showing exemplary results with their output at the work place. It might be a good idea to connect with them over social media or through email.

You can take this opportunity to share your thinking and ideologies and gain insights into the type of work that both of you do. This might be the right stepping stone towards a promising work life and even motivate you to perform at par with these people, if not better.

This conversation could start by a token of appreciation from you about the work that this person does. It could then turn into a plea of advice and a word of caution here. Try not to sound to desperate or too envious or arrogant, as both situations might completely put off the other person from conversing in a friendly manner.

5. Take out the redundant tasks

When you are engaged in a loop of monotony at work place, there are high chances that you are doing your job the wrong way, sometimes procrastinating stuff or else, avoiding several jobs altogether. You really need to take this negativity out of your work routine if you hope to be productive at work.

Try to be more active and seek companionship with your peers. It is quite possible that you might not like all of them but if you keep complaining about them or speaking behind their back, you are not only wasting your time but also stopping yourself from moving forward.

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Fix your schedule to include only tasks which add value to your work, instead of going after silly talk.

6. Get yourself a little distracted

Lack of motivation is like an ailment, one that does not go away with a common medicine. What you might need under such conditions is a treatment, or a therapy that can assure job satisfaction and motivate you to get out of your comfort zone. Sometimes, all you need is a pint of distraction.

Yes, you read that right. Distraction can sometimes be the best way to find the right direction in your work life. When you find yourself in a position that does not nurture you or help you grow, you need to move and shake around some legs so that you can swim out of the redundant tasks and find yourself a place which helps you grow.

This might require a lot of work and action from your end because you know it quite well, no one in your work place is going to do it for you. If you want to seek distraction, or rather, a suitable work role for yourself, you have to jiggle around for it yourself.

This jiggling could be in the form of quipping forward for a project or an assignment and taking on a job role, where you find yourself working efficiently. This opportunity is likely to keep you occupied and busy and bring back the memories of your action oriented approach from old days.

If you cannot find something for the time being, which will harness your skills and talent and let you portray them in the right direction, you could engage yourself in some training or internship, which will likely keep you busy for some time and also help you gain new knowledge in the process.

Whatever you do, make sure that you find yourself something which poses a deadline for you, such that you feel the pressure and urgency of the matter and find yourself occupied with the deadline.

Final Thoughts

Challenging yourself is the best remedy to spin out of a loop in which you might have got tangled. Find ways to nurture your skills and talents because you know you are worth it.

Realization is the key to understanding that you might be letting your talents go waste, only because you have fallen in for a habit of comfort and laziness. It is time for you to come out of the lax attitude that you have developed and seek something better in your work place, which you rightfully deserve.

Let yourself grow each day and achieve something new that takes your career to new heights. Losing motivation at the work place is not the end of the road.

Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

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Ankit Garg

Serial entrepreneur and working towards Early Retirement

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Last Updated on January 9, 2019

7 Signs You’re Ready to Change Your Life (And What to Do Next)

7 Signs You’re Ready to Change Your Life (And What to Do Next)

Changing your life can be both scary and exciting, but more than anything it’s necessary to grow. Most people come to a point one day where they have to make a change in their life to either grow personally or professionally, but it’s hard to figure out when you’re ready to make that change.

So how do you know when it’s time that you’re ready to change your life?

The truth is there is at least one sign in front of you that you have been ignoring or not even noticing. This article will take you through 7 signs that shows you that you’re ready to take that next step.

1. Your Motivation Is Gone

Humans all have something that makes them tick. A goal that makes them wake up at 5am even though they would love to sleep in late. A drive that makes them decline social events, because their jobs need them to stay all night, or maybe it’s the opposite and you attend social events to please the ones close to you.

It comes from your motivation to succeed either professionally or personally, but once the drive is missing, then you can’t keep going and you will lose your motivation.

If you suddenly can’t find that drive inside you once had, then it can be a sign. It can be your needs or wants that have changed. The important thing is that if you don’t feel the same motivation any longer, then it’s time to do something about it.

We’ve been taught to keep going even when it gets tough, but it’s okay to change and redefine yourself. It’s not about giving up. It’s about stopping up and revaluate whether you still want the same things in life.

Sometimes you may find out you still want the same time, but the way you’re going about it isn’t working for you.

Chris Sacca, an American venture investor, and entrepreneur, bought a cabin in Tahoe’s less-expensive neighbour and moved to the prime skiing and hiking country when he felt his motivation sliding away. He still had the same goals, but described a need for a change in his life to get back the right mind-set:[1]

”I wanted to have the time to focus, to learn the things I wanted to learn, to build what I wanted to build, and to really invest in relationships that I wanted to grow, rather than just doing a day of coffee after coffee after coffee.”

If you still want the same things, then do what Chris Sacca did and change your daily routine. If you want new things, then maybe it’s time to quit your job, or make a change in your personal life.

It doesn’t mean that you have failed. It simply means you are ready to focus on what matters: You.

Find your passion and motivation back to live a better life with these tips:

Want to Know What Truly Motivates You, and How to Always Stay Motivated?

2. You’re Unhappy at Least Once a Day Every Day

We tend to ignore unhappiness because it’s normal to get upset or feel a bit down. It’s true. It is normal, but if you feel unhappy every day and usually without even knowing exactly why – it’s a sign.

A task, a job or a relationship can be both giving and draining — most often both. While we have to accept a certain struggle, we don’t have to accept being unhappy.

Here’s a little test you can do easily:

Take a look at what you do every day, and take a look at the things you have assigned yourself. How many of these things do you do for yourself? And how many do you do to please someone else?

Once and a while, we need to take a step back and look at our to-do list. Are you dealing with a to-do list of others, or your own to-do list? There is a difference.

This can easily be misunderstood, but you need to remember it’s not about being selfish or lazy. If you’re unhappy on a daily basis, then you can’t make other people happy in the long run either.

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If you’re unhappy every day, then it’s time to recognize it as a sign that you’re doing something wrong in your life when it comes to your own happiness. It might have seemed right before, but it’s clearly not doing you any good anymore. You’re ready for a change.

You can learn how to be happy again from this article:

How to Get Motivated and Be Happy Every Day When You Wake Up

3. The People Around You Are Changing

The grass is far from always greener on the other side of the street (at least most of the time), and while we shouldn’t compare ourselves to the people around us on a daily basis, it’s okay to take a look once a while.

The people you surround yourself with often reflect back on yourself. If you’re going through a phase where most of your friends have been going out all the time, and then they suddenly start to focus on work and family, it might be a sign.

This by no means imply you should change your life if you’re still feeling fulfilled and good about it. But if you turn your head and start noticing a change around you and it makes you rethink things, it’s probably a sign of you being ready to change as well.

4. You’re Bored

A healthy life shouldn’t be all fun and games, but if you’re starting to feel bored on a daily basis, then it could be a sign. There’s a difference between waking up on a Sunday and not knowing what to do, and waking up every day and feel bored.

Maybe you don’t feel challenged in your job any longer, or your normal idea of fun is no longer giving you the enjoyment it once did before.

Take the time to check with yourself. Are you just bored? Or do you need something more in your life?

Humans are run by habits and routines, which makes it tough to change them. It also makes us stay in bad situations much longer than needed.

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It’s always hard in the beginning but you can do it! Take a leap of faith and change your life.

5. You’re Stressed

Stress is probably one of the most common signs that you’re in need of a change, but it can also be one of the signs that can be the hardest to react upon. Because when you’re stressed, you automatically feel anxious about making a change.

It can be hard to deal with stress, but luckily there are many different types of solutions to deal with it. It often comes down to trying different ways and figuring out what works for you.

Tim Ferriss notices that:[2]

“More than 80% of the world-class performers I’ve interviewed have some form of daily mediation or mindfulness practice.”

Take a look at this to find what’s best for you to relieve stress:

The Healthy and Unhealthy Coping Mechanisms for Stress

But sometimes all you need to do is to figure out what is stressing you out and whether it’s worth it. If the stress comes down to being a sign, then you need to accept it and create a change in your life, because you’re clearly ready.

6. You’re Scared

Everybody lives with fears. They’re afraid of losing someone. They’re afraid of losing their job. They’re afraid of making the wrong decisions. They’re afraid of a lot of things because life is pretty scary.

The trick is to recognize whether the fear drives you or brings you down. It’s okay to be scared, but it’s not okay to live in constant fear.

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If you’re scared about a specific thing or just feel anxious on a daily basis, it’s time to get a better understanding of where it comes from and also see it as a sign.

When you’re already scared, it can be tough to consider making a change in your life, but look past the fear and know that you can choose to stay in this state of mind or work through it.

Try to visualize a future where the fear is no longer present and use it as a tool to make the hard decision now and change your life for the better.

This guide written by the author of Fight the Fear – How to Beat Your Negative Mindset and Win in Life will help you conquer your fears:

How to Overcome Your Irrational Fears (That Stop You from Succeeding)

7. There’s No Stimulation in Your Life

Humans need stimulation in their daily lives because we will feel scared, stressed and unhappy at times. If you can tell that you no longer have that stimulation in your life, then it’s a sign that you’re ready for a change.

What drove you in the past or got your heart pounding faster once might not do the same for you anymore. Before you get to the previous mentioned state of minds, you can get ahead of things and recognize this lack of stimulation as soon as possible as a sign.

The Bottom Line

All changes are hard and shouldn’t be taken lightly, but we need to start seeing change as a positive rather than (as we often do at first) a negative. Changing your life can be tough, but it’s worth it.

Once you decided to change your life it won’t be easy in the beginning. Try to use a phrase Chris Sacca used when he was going through the same:[3]

”I had a phrase I kept repeating in my head over and over again, which was, ‘Tonight, I will be in by bed…”

This will help you remember whatever you’re feeling right now is temporary. But if you don’t find the courage to make a change, then the negative feelings and emotions you’re dealing with won’t be.

Featured photo credit: Joshua Ness via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Tim Ferriss: Tools of Titans, page 165
[2] Tim Ferriss: Tools of Titans, page 149
[3] Tim Ferriss: Tools of Titans, Page 167

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