While some have been dragged into home-based working against our will, others have been here (willingly) for a while already. However, the time of self-isolation and uncertainty has brought its challenges… Let’s talk about dealing with motivation in times of Corona!
You used to have plenty of ideas and DRIVE to get things done…
You woke up excited to get to your business, check off another thing off your to-do list…
You LOVED your chosen path and wouldn’t change it for a thing.
Growing your business… working from home… Doing YOUR THING.
And now it’s all like… meh.
Do you feel the same??
Here’s how my days go now.
I wake up knowing that I have great things I could do but not really… wanting to do anything.
I had new project ideas stacked up. In fact, I’ve had them – and the drive to make them happen – for years, ever since I started working online. But now I don’t really see the point and the drive’s definitely gone.
Well… okay. I can give myself a break. For one afternoon… One day… One week… Wait… What’s happening?!!?
I’ve always found that doing is the best motivator. I just need to get started. So gonna sit in front of my laptop… Deal with those small to-do’s and that’ll get me going…
An hour has passed… two…
I feel like I’m dragging my work with me.
IS THIS IT? DON’T I LOVE WHAT I DO ANYMORE?!?!
Should I change my path? Ditch my ideas?
I could describe my typical day in these uncertain times through the whole post, believe me. But I won’t because we have better things to get to.
“Those “all over the place” feelings you’ve been having? They are symptoms of stress, NOT personal failures of yours. ”
– Alexis Rockley
Dealing with motivation in times of Corona
Yes, the times are hard and we all know – there’s somebody out there with bigger problems than ours.
But now I walk to talk with creatives, home-business owners, freelancers, remote workers, bloggers. Those who were supposed to be all prepared for this “working from home” situation… But don’t seem to be able to catch up.
If that’s you, let’s talk about dealing with motivation in times of Corona!
These days, many creatives feel almost forced to MAKE. THINGS. HAPPEN.
This is YOUR time to shine. Your time to make that project a reality. While people might be holding off any of their purchases now, NOW you need to prepare for what will be next.
DO IT NOW. NOW. YESTERDAY. NOW. DO. IT.
We are overwhelmed by our own expectations… Which leads us to being deflated and almost helpless.
In our minds, we know that yes, this seems to be the perfect time to be productive. However, our bodies are saying HOW ABOUT NO.
TIP #1: Know that this too shall pass
Even if you have the job, money, a place to live and all your loved ones are healthy and happy, your brain is in a stress mode.
(Unless you live in a bunker and don’t read news whatsoever)
STRESS is the main reason why you’re stuck. Why your brain doesn’t work the way it did.
Even if you feel perfectly fine and nothing seems to bother you, your brain’s still taking care of you.
So, first of all, it’s important to understand that this is just a temporary thing.
When it comes to working – nothing really needs to happen NOW, does it? Most, if not all, things really can wait.
And this too shall pass, that’s when you can get back to your full-speed.
TIP #2: Give yourself a break
For around the last 4 years, all my breaks were vigorously planned. Either it’s time for lunch or vacation. I’ve never really had time to waste…
Now, I end up finding myself in the middle of the day just laying in the bed and looking at the ceiling. Sometimes I’ve even thought “maybe I should at least read a book now? Or like… check social media?”
I have that thing with not being able to be “unproductive”.
But I act like I’m frozen. Just being there.
And eventually, I realized that I NEED TO LET GO. And I deserve a break.
In these uncertain times, our brains are half-frozen. They are in survival mode. They want to make sure we have food to eat and we’ll wake up healthy tomorrow.
Pushing and making them work the way they used to is a NO GO. We DO need more rest.
Sleeping ridiculously long or taking way too many naps? It’s OKAY. This will pass. Give your body what it needs.
Your brain is actually burning MORE ENERGY. That’s why we feel more tired.
TIP #3: Focus on the maintenance
If you had grande creative plans for new projects, let them go for now.
Your mind is focused on the primal survival mode. Sleeping, eating, waking up the next morning. All your creativity is blocked because of this.
If you feel stuck in your projects – it’s alright!
If your mind has almost like a “fog” all over it – it’s fine.
Focus on more systematic or more regular tasks. Do the maintenance instead of new things. Organize, update, schedule.
It was madly hard for me to admit this. At the beginning of March, I had a plan to start working on a new online course. It was this huge idea I prepared myself for FOR MONTHS. Mid-March the self-isolation hit and day after day I couldn’t push myself to get started. It’s the end of April now and I’ve given up on it for now. The time will come!
TIP #4: Plan short-term
Do you feel like all your future goals and dreams seem irrelevant? Do you just don’t seem to care anymore?
Oh, I know the feeling…
As I’ve already mentioned, your brain is focused on survival. So the future seems far and foggy. That’s why the lack of motivation!
“Your brain knows being short-sighted is a safer way to cope right now.”
– Alexis Rockley
For creatives, it’s usually important to set up and achieve goals to feel more motivation and a sense of accomplishment.
Therefore, my tip is to focus on some short-term goals and projects. Things that won’t require too much of your time or creativity.
It might feel a bit like cheating. But the actual process of setting up and achieving at least some goals could help you!
TIP #5: Refocus
Focusing is a hard task to handle when your brain is overwhelmed with stress.
Therefore, the last but not least tip for dealing with motivation in times of Corona is to REFOCUS. Redefine your energy. Restart.
Calm yourself down. Do meditation. Run. Go for walks in the forest or by the sea. Ground yourself.
In this time, it’s important to get your energy juices flowing.
So instead of focusing on your work, to-do lists, projects and clients, FOCUS ON YOURSELF. Think about your wellbeing and self-care. Give yourself time. Breath. And understand that everything matters just as much as you make it.
At the end of the day, we’re all in the same boat. Your clients, readers, students and any other audience is also experiencing the same lack of focus, sleepiness, lack of productivity. All we really need is to be more understanding and realize that the existing social norms are about to change. It’s time to adapt!
What are your favorite hacks for dealing with motivation in times of Corona??