Running low on motivation? 10 tips to get you going

Last checked and updated on July 28, 2022

When you are your own boss, it can be difficult to find motivation. It may be tempting to take it easy whenever you feel like it and spend a little too much time relaxing. 

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If you cave to the lack of motivation too often you may not be successful in your endeavors. To be successful when you are your own boss, you have to fight through the times when you aren’t feeling motivated. It isn’t as difficult as it first seems. 

1. Create a strict schedule for yourself (and stick to it!)

By creating a schedule, you will know what you should be doing at all times. Make time for breaks. This way, you will know that if you work for a certain number of hours you will get that sweet break you deserve. Decide on a fun or relaxing activity that you enjoy, such as reading a book or watching an episode of your favorite TV show. Better yet, step outside, take out the trash or something – anything to get you moving and breathing fresh air for five or ten minutes.

2. Choose one smaller goal at a time

It is so much easier to get motivated when you have a goal that is reachable. Set the bar low at first. Set a goal to write one paragraph or to accomplish just the first step of your overall goal. You will feel so much more motivated if you can cross off even one little task from your list of goals. 

3. Avoid electronics before bed and while you are asleep

If you aren’t getting an adequate amount of rest each night, then you may not be motivated the next day. Using electronics before bed can limit the amount of melatonin being released into your body and cause an insufficient amount of sleep at night. The blue light emitted from your phone, tablet or TV stimulates your senses and makes you more alert.

4. Document your progress

It is easy to lose motivation if you feel like you aren’t making progress. Looking back on progress made in the past is difficult, however, and you may lose sight of how far you’ve come. With this being the case, it is important to document every step of the way so that you have a visual of the overall picture. 

5. Reward yourself

You can’t work every day or you will burn out, which will only lead to suppressed motivation. If you have put in a solid week of work, give yourself a day off. Recharge by getting a good night’s sleep on a high-quality mattress or rest your eyes and bones in nature. You need some fresh air, natural light and sunshine for health sake.

6. Work with a friend

It was all fun and games when you first started freelancing. Then you realized your social life is close to non-existing. You meet with friends based on your deadlines. Try inviting a friend over to work with you. You may be on separate projects, but just working alongside someone may help us become motivated and focused. Feed off their energy and it will multiply so you both can get things done! Coworking spaces can have the same effect.

7. Get inspired

When motivation is lacking, it sometimes helps to find things that inspire you. If you’re a blogger, go read some of your favorite blogs. For projects, research ones that are similar and spend some time browsing related topics. By reminding yourself of all inspiring aspects of what you do, you may be able to strike some motivation. 

8. Tell others about your goal

Studies have shown that when you tell others about your goal, you are more likely to stick to it and achieve the goal. This is because it holds you personally accountable if other people know about it, making your motivation a little higher. 

9. Remind yourself of the benefits

Thinking about what you are working toward may help you get motivated. If the benefit is that you get paid, further your career, or promote your business, remind yourself of that. You will never make that happen if you aren’t motivated to work toward that goal. 

10. For every negative thought, think of two positive thoughts

If you find yourself being negative, then you have to force yourself to think positively. Doubting yourself won’t get you anywhere and will only hinder your progress. Having positive thoughts will encourage you to move forward and work toward your end goal. After a while of forcing yourself to have positive thoughts, it may just become a normal habit for you. 

Final thoughts

Everyone loses motivation from time to time. The difference between successful and unsuccessful people, however, is that successful people persist on finding a way to work through their bad times and learn from their mistakes. You decide which side you want to be on.

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