Top Three Ways to Work Without Motivation
You ever feel like you don’t want to be at work? Of course you do! There are times when I don’t want to write these god tier blog posts, record podcasts, shoot YouTube videos, stream on Twitch, all while going to work five days a week. Most of the time I’m pretty gassed to take on new challenges and achieve small goals that feed into larger ones. Some days, however, I do wake up without the necessary drive to get things done. That’s where it gets hard.
Motivation is a tough. Especially because it comes and goes like that stray cat that you fed once. It was only that one time, right?! It just kept coming back to hang out so you kept feeding it, didn’t you? Why not take it in and make it part of your life permanently?
That’s kind of like what hobbies are like. If a hobby keeps coming back over time, maybe you want to do something like make that hobby a permanent fixture. Maybe see what else the hobby can do for you besides entertain.
That’s where I am. I want to start taking my hobbies far more seriously. That’s part of the reason why I started this blog. Another reason is because I want to become a stronger writer. I also want it to serve as the home base to the content that I create. There are a lot of things I want to do that will all lead back to this website.
Well, back to the original question: there are a lot of mountains in life that demand conquering. How do I keep climbing if I’m not feeling motivated? That’s hard to answer. Here are three things that help me get on or stay on track when I’m not feeling motivated. This isn’t about regaining your lost motivation. It’s about defeating the need for it; working around it.
Keeping things scheduled not only helps me keep track of my goals, but it keeps them together in digestible chunks that I can continue to return to. When I schedule a task, I try my best not go over the allotted time. This helps me keep my desire to come back. If I stop before I’m tired of doing what I’m doing, I’m either going to be amped to come back, or, at the very least, I won’t be tired of it. That’s how I justify it, at least.
Scheduling also allows me to fit more into a single day. It’s pretty easy to get lost in a task; to spend all day doing one thing. I really enjoy everything that I’ve been doing lately so I like to vary what I do. This helps me stay fresh on each task.
That isn’t to say that I schedule everything that I want to do. If I want to play with one of the far-too-many yoyos I own, I don’t block out 15 minutes of my day to do that. By no means is it necessary to schedule time for every one of your hobbies. That’d be dumb. This is just something I like to do so I don’t find myself dicking around when I want to get things done.
Scheduling is solely for hobbies that I have goals associated with. For instance, if I wanted to become a competition yoyo player, then I’d schedule time every day to play with the yoyo. As of now, I schedule time for podcasting, recording YouTube videos, writing, and Twitch streaming.
I’m very competitive. Even if it means the only person I can beat is myself (heyooooo). What helps me keep on track with specific tasks is setting goals for myself. They aren’t lofty, world beating goals, they are snack-sized, easily digestible goals.
Going back to the example of becoming a competition yoyo player, an example goal would be to master a trick every session, or every other session. That, to me, is incredibly reasonable. Though, admittedly, it may not be completely reasonable to other people. Choosing what’s within your scope is a big part of setting goals. You never want to stress yourself out because it’s just something you’re doing on the side, after all.
Again, setting goals for your hobbies isn’t necessary. It’s just something you can do to help you work around seeking motivation, if necessary.
Make your hobby a habit
It was a trick! The first two are really working toward this last one. I do those other things until my hobby is habitual. You ever need motivation to brush your teeth??? No way! You’ve been doing it since you were a kid… hopefully.
How long, exactly, does it take for something to become a habit? Some dork said that it takes around 66 days to build a habit. I don’t know if that’s entirely true. The real answer is something becomes a habit when it does. I know that isn’t exactly a satisfying answer, but it’s really up to you. How long does it take for you to make a habit or break one? No one person’s answer is going to be the same as anyone else’s. That’s just how it works.
When I was wee lad, I played basketball every Tuesday and Thursday from 17:00 to 20:00. I did this for over three years. I don’t know about you, but when something becomes a habit, the task just becomes incredibly natural. It occurs without me having to think about it. There were holidays that I’d show up to the gym without thinking about it! It became second nature for me to go out and play. Habit is very powerful. By the by, I recommend a lovely book called The Power of Habit. It’s incredibly helpful.
I hope you found this post helps you find your way around motivation! You don’t really need it, trust me. Also, as a side note, if you’ve reached the point where you don’t have the motivation to get out of bed, or you’re struggling to make it through the day, please seek professional help. Everybody needs somebody sometime! Never be ashamed to see someone!
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