Even the most motivated of employees occasionally experience a slump and need a boost to regain their normal motivation levels. This article presents seven methods to stay motivated at work and enhance performance when you are going through a period of low motivation.
It is well known that motivated employees are happier, more energetic, more enthusiastic, more productive, more driven and better performing than their unmotivated peers. Employers are always on the lookout for motivated employees and realize that motivation is often contagious and has positive spillover effects on the whole team. Even the most motivated of employees however, experience an occasional slump and need a boost to regain their normal motivation levels. Here are 7 methods to stay motivated at work and enhance performance when you are going through a period of low motivation.
- Clarify your goals
Nothing is more demotivating than working haphazardly without having a clear vision, mission and set of objectives for your work. Without a clear vision and knowledge of how your work impacts the big picture you may well end up spending a lot of time on urgent unimportant matters rater than tasks that positively impact the big picture. Clarify in no uncertain terms your vision, mission and objectives and focus on them beginning always with the end in mind. It is remarkable what you will achieve once you have honed in on your precise goals and can focus on them and visualize yourself achieving them.
- Establish a clear gameplan for achieving your goals
Once you have clarified your vision and goals, formulate a detailed strategy for getting there and chart your progress on a regular and ongoing basis. Break down large complex projects into a series of manageable tasks that are interesting and achievable. Having a blueprint for success that is composed of clear, sensible milestones and achievable interesting tasks will greatly simplify and lend meaning to your daily routine and will also give you a feeling of control over your work and deadlines which largely boosts motivation. The more organized you are and can focus and adhere to accomplishing your goals according to your detailed blueprint for success, the more motivated you will be and the less likely you are to fall into a fit of panic or insecurity and lose confidence and motivation.
- Ride the Wave of your Successes
Success is very stimulating. Work hard enough to achieve successful results and see how motivated you are to achieve further successes as you excel in your performance. Work hard, aim to overachieve your goals and ride the momentum of each success to achieve further successes. Remind yourself that once your vision is clear and you have a set of well-defined, reasonable objectives and milestones to reach, the secret of success is hard work, creativity and perseverance. Aim to ride the wave of each success to further the next success and channel the positive energy to achieving similar superlative performance in your next task or project. It is not always that you can ride the wave of euphoria that arises from a sound success story so make sure you leverage an dtake advantage of these bursts of energy and motivation to the extent possible.
- Reward yourself
Reward yourself as you achieve your objectives and/or reach specific important milestones. Plan ahead what forms this reward will take and what tasks/projects/results will be rewarded. This will give you something to look forward to, extra drive to get there and a surge of excitement and enthusiasm when you do attain your desired goals.
- Keep Things in Perspective
It is important to keep things in perspective and always remind yourself of why you work. Beside the pay, it is often about realizing your potential, feeling alive and useful, feeling connected, making a difference in the world, expressing creativity, expanding your skills and abilities, helping others and contributing to the community. List the reasons you entered the field you are in and when times are tough remind yourself of why you do the work you do. Also remind yourself that work is work and that you have a life outside of work to look forward to, enjoy and make a difference in.
- Maintain a healthy work/life balance
It is very easy to lose yourself at work and forget what awaits you outside of the work arena. Maintaining a healthy work/life balance is essential both for your general motivation level and your overall wellbeing. Make sure you take the time to do the things you like to do outside of work whether it be connecting with friends and family, exercising, reading, taking courses, shopping or other hobbies and activities that channel your creativity and energy. Having something to look forward to after work will see you through moments of drudgery at work when your motivation and energy levels are not as high as they could be and will also make you more productive at work.
- Think positive
Negativity is a contagious affliction that drains you of energy, slows you down, saps your enthusiasm and blinds you to the reasons you work. Avoid negative feelings at all costs and concentrate on the positive. To do this, listen to motivational tapes, to music that particularly inspires you, read motivational books, talk to inspired or inspiring people, surround yourself with positive stimuli and concentrate on the reasons you work. Find things to laugh at as long as you are not laughing at your peers and count your blessings at every opportunity. Focus on positives regardless of how small or inconsequential they are whether it be a positive remark from a boss or peer, accomplishing your day's goals earlier than usual, overachieving on a small deliverable, working well with people, a looming vacation, completing a difficult task or any other positive stimulus.
Aleem Ahmed Qureshi