how to overcome the motivation dip we all have right now

it’s january, it’s dark, it’s dreary (at least in the uk), and you aren’t feeling all that motivated. trust me, neither am i. you might have felt more lethargic and tired recently, and the short days really don’t help this. but there are ways of overcoming this, and this is what i’m currently working on.

the change curve (Kubler-Ross) is a curve that applies to the current situation, particularly in education settings, but is primarily used in business settings and problem-solving scenarios. the curve shows a medium level of motivation to begin with (in what would be september), before a small increase but then a huge decrease, and this usually occurs around january time, if not just slightly before in december. the good news is, after this dip, usually people have a motivation boost. i know for me personally this will happen because i have 4 exams and an assignment due this month, and 1st february is when semester 2 starts for me at university, so i know i’ll be more motivated with a fresh set of modules. i realise i’m analysing this like i would be for a uni assignment, I apologise, but basically what i’m trying to say is:

it will get better.

as i mentioned, it’s also getting a lot harder to stay motivated because of the dark nights, which i completely understand. i prefer working in natural light so get annoyed when i have to turn my light on at 3:30/4pm. i also hate closing my curtains but won’t leave them open if i have the lights on because i don’t want the street next to mine seeing what i’m doing (not that it is in any way exciting) … anyone else have this problem or is it just me being odd? my best suggestion to overcoming this is structure your day so the things you need to do with natural light e.g. taking blog photos, and maybe do some planning later on in the day when it’s dark.

another thing that comes into play here is early risers vs night owls. i am a night owl personally, so i’m more than happy laying in for most of the morning and working to all-hours at night. i also feel most productive in the evenings as my interruptions are kept to a minimum because i haven’t got to cook, or workout (unless it’s easier to in the evening), for example. despite loving the natural light, it is a pain when some days i’ll only see 4 hours of it in a day! early risers, i applaud you. i feel like being an early riser is easier in the summers due to the sunrise being at like 4am, but even just waking up at 7/8am works, because you could work until 3/4 o’clock when the sun sets and be done for the day. i would love to work like this, but i just can’t do it, plus, i get bored in the evenings if i don’t do a lot!

so we all need a bit of motivation, and these are some of the tips i have learned since being off:

  • PLAN PLAN PLAN

the best thing to do in my opinion when you want to be productive. write lists, plan how long things will take, schedule your days, plan days where you’re going to have a break etc. it just helps you to visualise everything you need/want to do.

  • give yourself a bit of structure to your day

like i mentioned, planning your day can be so good as it sets you a sort of goal to achieve everything on your to-do list. i like to give days a bit of structure, for example, the day i’m writing this, i had to nip to the supermarket early, then had a uni call, took a few hours off and then decided to do uni work, workout, i’m now onto blog work, then after this i’ll do a bit more uni work. i usually don’t plan times for this as it makes me a lot more stressed but knowing what i’m doing and what order it is in really helps.

  • reward yourself

there is no better feeling than having accomplished something, whether it be big or small, so at the end of the day you deserve a treat. i already know in advance that after my physiology exam on wednesday that i’m going to take a bath with a lush bath bomb. this may seem a bit odd to know that far in advance, but that module is my hardest, so i want to treat myself. it just brings the satisfaction of completing something.

  • have a cut-off point

having a time where you stop working and start to unwind is crucial as it gets you out of the work mindset. i try to do this about an hour before i want to sleep, to allow some time to chill and unwind before i sleep. i usually eat something because i’m always eating, watch something on netflix and just catch up on social media i’ve missed throughout the day because i tend to just use messages and snapchat throughout the day.

just to end this post, a little disclaimer that you don’t have to be motivated right now! not everyone is with the pandemic and that is completely understandable, everyone has good and bad days, and you shouldn’t be made to think the bad days reflect the rest of your life. if you’re not there, don’t worry! spend that extra day in bed, watch that netflix show, just please do whatever you can to look after your health (physically and mentally) through these times! as from me, lots of love to you all, i hope you will smash it!

mills x

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