I sit here writing this post after having a few pretty chaotic weeks. I’ve felt exhausted, burnt out and like I just want to curl up in bed and eat a load of chocolate. It’s pretty uncommon for me but it happened.
But the thing is, that feeling is temporary. Life is full of ups and downs and it’s okay to have spells where you’re unmotivated and want to do nothing. It’s called being human.
I used to feel guilty every time I had a relaxing night in. I’d worry about what I had to do next and how I could be using my time to do something more productive. As time has gone on, I’ve realised just how much you need that chill time to keep yourself motivated and focused.
This post is for everyone out there who has lost motivation and focus at some point in their lives and will give you some handy tips to keep yourself energised. I write this post after feeling pretty unmotivated myself recently, so I know how it feels.
I hope you find this post helpful and that it will realign you with your goals.
1. Know your priorities
One of the key elements to staying focused and motivated is prioritising your tasks. If you find yourself particularly busy for a week or so, you need to know what tasks to prioritise so you don’t become overwhelmed.
I’ve often fallen into the trap of feeling like my ‘to do’ list is piling up when I’m busy and not knowing how to tackle it. The best thing to do is prioritise your tasks and only focus on what’s important, the rest can be tackled when you’ve got some spare time.
Don’t overwork yourself and only focus on what’s vital.
2. Be organised
Rule number one for staying focused is being organised. A tidy space equals a tidy mind. A tidy mind means you’re in the right headspace to go and get your goals.
The way I like to stay organised is by making lists so I don’t have to worry about what I need to do and it ensures I don’t forget anything. I’ll admit I am a list freak but I do find making lists essential for staying focused.
3. Visualise the end results
When times are tough, it can be easy to lose sight of your goals. I know when I’ve had a rough week, I can feel pretty unbothered by my goals or they can feel unattainable. But, you set your goals for a reason, and that’s because you want them. Never lose sight of that.
One of the best ways to stay focused and motivated is to visualise the end results. If your end result is getting a 5-bed house, visualise what that house will look like, what the decor will be, the layout, the garden and most importantly, yourself in it. This will help keep your goal fresh and relevant, which will help you keep reaching for it.
4. Remove toxic people
Toxic people will feed negativity into your life and doubt your goals. You don’t need that negativity and don’t deserve to be brought down, so cut those people from your life. You’ll feel better for it and will realise how much you didn’t need them.
In the same breath, surround yourself with positive energy. You can bounce off positive people and share your ideas with them, and they will motivate and encourage you to achieve your goals. When you’re with like-minded people, it will really help you stay positive and energised.
5. Break your goal down into manageable chunks
If you have a big goal, it can be quite difficult to see how you can achieve it or where to start. The best thing to do here is to set yourself smaller, manageable tasks to help you achieve that big goal.
For instance, one of my biggest goals is to turn my blog into a full-time job. To help me get there, I set myself specific, consistent tasks, such as: post twice a week, promote my blog posts over social media, look at ways to boost my DA score etc.
Blogging full-time is certainly no easy task but by breaking my goal down into smaller chunks, I can monitor my progress, look for areas to improve and all the while keep pushing towards my goal. So, set yourself smaller tasks to help you achieve your main goal and it won’t feel so overwhelming.
6. Have downtime
This point is vital. Make sure you have time for yourself where you do whatever you want and let go of your tasks. That time you spend recharging will help you come back to your goals re-energised and ready to attack. Stick Netflix on, order in a pizza and run a bubble bath.
If you push too hard and burn out, you’re going to end up resenting yourself. In fact, you’ll lose more time because you’re going to make yourself ill, which means you’ll need more time to recover. Whereas if you take some relaxation time to begin with, you can go back to normal fully recharged and motivated.
Make time for yourself. If you want some simple self-care ideas, you can read my blog post on it here.
7. Don’t be too hard on yourself
We all make mistakes and we all have bad weeks. That’s fine and normal. These bad times help you appreciate the good.
If you have a bad day or week, don’t worry about it. Recognise it, understand it, and carry on when you feel more like yourself. You don’t need to beat yourself up.
8. Wake up early
Waking up early has been key to helping me stay motivated and focused. I realised I was becoming sluggish at work and I didn’t understand why but after doing some research, I thought a new morning routine would set me up perfectly for the day ahead. And I was right.
Read more: 5 ways to start your day off right
Starting your morning off right will help you feel ready to enter the day ahead. I wake up early in the morning to practice yoga, do some blog work and do some journalling. These small steps have really helped increase my productivity throughout the day, and I know they’ll help you too.
9. Reflect on your progress
Just as you shouldn’t be so hard on yourself, make sure you’re reflecting on your progress. Reward yourself when you achieve something on your journey and take note of all that amazing progression you’ve been making. Never lose sight of where you began and where you are now.
Sometimes, I get stuck in a rut with my blog. I can feel like it’s not worth it or it should be doing better. But I look back to where I started and how much this little blog has grown and I realise just how much I’ve accomplished. And that helps keep me focused, motivated and pushing forwards.
Staying focused and motivated isn’t easy and requires discipline, but with the right mindset, you can achieve whatever you want. These tips might provide you with some new tools but it always begins with yourself. Go get your goals.
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I love this! Definitely important to look after yourself when you’re feeling run down.
You have to if you want to stay sane!
These are fantastic tips Sarah! I always under estimate the importance of having abit of doen time, it always gives me more motivation once I’ve had time away from a goal that I’m feeling less focused on.
Thank you for sharing!
I completely agree! Downtime is essential to help you stay aligned with your goals. I always ensure I’m having downtime now lol xx
Thank for sharing your tips, I really could use some. I’m feeling constantly restless and exhausted, worried that I still need to do something, etc. Downtime is one of the things I for sure need. After that I’m going to use your other tips! 🙂
Downtime is essential. Just take a few days out, it’ll never cause problems in the longrun but if you end up burning out, you’ll spend much longer trying to recover. We’ve got to look after ourselves 🙂
This semester I felt so run down due to work stress, school stress, and then blogging stress (when I upgraded my site my views / post rankings took a major dip), so I really loved reading this post. I completely agree that prioritizing things, breaking them down into smaller, more achievable goals, and getting organized are key for preventing burn out. This was a reminder to be better about this during the coming semester.
Also, cutting out toxic influences is so beneficial for preventing negative emotions and feelings of self doubt. It sucks when people can’t support your dreams.