No matter what your personal or professional goals may be, when the unexpected turns your routine upside down, it’s hard to get back on track. Even when you have been plugging away, sometimes motivation wanes. Here are simple tips to get back on track the next time you have a loss of motivation.
Did you ever notice that when life is going along smoothly, we feel pleased and accomplished at the end of the day? We are taking care of all that needs to be done and moving forward towards our goals. Whether it’s career advancement, weight loss, or building a new home, as long as there are no huge bumps in the road, we easily stay on track.
I took a break from writing articles during the past few months, lightened my client load and truly enjoyed the summer. I was gearing up for the fall, excited to get working on some business and personal goals, when those unexpected bumps occurred.
Discomfort from a pinched nerve caused me to feel distracted and unfocused. Visits to the chiropractor and rehab were time-consuming. Just when I began feeling better, our sump pump failed during a fierce rain storm and our basement flooded. Our basement housed my exercise studio, a home office, family room and guest room. The loss of it left us feeling displaced and overwhelmed.
Recovery construction workers, insurance adjusters, clean up crews and contractors were demanding of my time and attention. We have months of rebuilding in front of us, and I have an unexpected job on my hands.
After weeks of attending to all of this, my business was being neglected, and I was lacking the motivation to get back to the things I normally do to keep it thriving. I didn’t like that feeling!
So I took some time and went through the steps I use to help my clients when they lose focus and desire. It feels really good to be back on track, and I’m excited to share some ideas to recharge your motivation the next time you see it wavering.
1. Self-care first. When life throws you a curveball, leaving you feeling overwhelmed, stressed and unfocused, don’t let self-care slip. Getting the sleep you need, eating healthily and exercising regularly will keep you feeling strong and in control. No matter what was going on, my doctor’s appointments and daily exercise were planned first in my schedule. A few lunch dates out with my girlfriends lifted my mood and kept my spirits high.
2. Look for the silver lining. What is the lesson to be learned from your current situation? What possibilities and promises might lie ahead? The flood in our basement will mean a new paint job, something I’ve been procrastinating for a long time. It feels good to clean out items that we no longer need. And finding things long forgotten, such as my kid’s old camp letters, left us rolling in laughter.
3. Adopt an attitude of gratitude. When my pinched nerve had me uncomfortable and frustrated, I reminded myself to be grateful that this is an acute injury, not a permanent disability, and it will eventually get better. Overall, I am healthy and well. The flood in the basement was upsetting, but I am keenly aware of how many others suffered much worse damage in the many natural disasters that have occurred over the last several years. Hurricanes, volcanos, and tornadoes have caused massive damage and loss of lives. As a result, many businesses had to shut down, and were subjected to a loss of income. In the scheme of things, our minor flood was, well, minor.
4. Wherever possible, simplify. Ask yourself what must get done, and let go, even if only temporarily, of the rest of your to-do’s. Meeting with my clients and showing up for speaking obligations was non-negotiable (and helped keep my sanity). Waiting one more month to publish any new articles and delaying the promotion of a new group program wasn’t a big deal for my business.
5. Reexamine your visions and motivators. Ask yourself why you set your goals in the first place. What is the meaning and purpose behind them? What will it mean to you to accomplish them? Reviewing my business mission and goals reignited my passion and excitement.
6. Take one small step at a time. Once you begin to feel the desire to get back on track, ask yourself what is the one small step you can take right now to start the process. Schedule it and commit to it. Getting back to writing was my first step. I planned time to create an outline, then my intro, and then another time to write the tips. And here you go; I’m back on track, and I hope it will help you the next time you’re feeling overwhelmed and derailed.
Identity Magazine is all about empowering women to get all A’s in the game of life – Accept. Appreciate. Achieve.™ Every contributor and expert answer the Identity 5 questions in keeping with our theme. Their answers can be random and in the moment or they can be aligned with the above article. As a team, we hope to inspire and motivate ourselves and inspire you to get all A’s.
1. What have you accepted within your life, physically and/or mentally? What are you still working on accepting?
No matter how well I plan, often life will throw you a curve ball. When that happens, I have to accept that things will not go as I expected, readjust, and plan accordingly.
2. What have you learn to appreciate about yourself and/or within your life, physically and mentally? What are you still working on to appreciate?
I appreciate my flexibility. I no longer get frazzled and bent out of shape by the unexpected. I can take a deep breath, calm myself, and think clearly. By doing so, I can come up with solutions to life’s complexities. I guess that’s why my Dad calls me “the problem solver.”
3. What is one of your most rewarding achievements in life? What makes YOU most proud? What goals and dreams do you still have?
Creating a warm, welcoming and calm household. I grew up in a small, cramped apartment. As a result, we learned to stay organized and neat. There was no room for mess-LOL. The fact that my husband and I were able to buy a beautiful home with lots of space has been an incredibly rewarding achievement. But the lessons learned from living in that little apartment served me well when it came to creating an organized and neat home. It’s a place my family feels good to come home to at the end of the day, and extended family and friends enjoy visiting. A large goal is to downsize within the next few years and move into a much smaller space. Perhaps back to apartment living. My goals is to have that home be just as warm and welcoming.
4. We all have imperfections, so we think. The truth—we are all perfectly imperfect. What are your not-so-perfect ways? What imperfections and quirks create who you are—your Identity?
I like things neat and organized. I’ve been known to get impatient and irritated when others around me don’t embrace the importance of that quite as much as I do. So, my not so perfect way is to clean up after others, even when it’s not my job. I sometimes find myself cleaning out my daughter’s closet or bathroom cabinets when I go to visit her home in CA. Luckily, she sees that as a benefit rather than an annoyance.
5. “I Love My…” is an outlet for you to express and appreciate all the positive traits that make you…well… YOU! Sharing what you love about yourself will make you smile, feel empowered, and uplift your spirit and soul. (we assure you!) Identity challenges you to complete the phrase “I Love My…?”
Since we are on the topic, I’ll say, “I love my home!”