Over the past 12 months, I’ve been feeling very unmotivated and wasn’t doing anything about it. I was in an unhealthy routine, I ate tonnes of processed food, wasn’t staying active, sometimes didn’t leave the house all-day, and combined it resulted in low productivity. I convinced myself I was putting 110% into each project I was working on. Let’s face it, that wasn’t entirely true and I was telling myself that to give the illusion I was using my time wisely.
Re-motivating yourself isn’t an easy task, it can be both mentally and physically draining. For some people it comes naturally, for others like me I struggle to get started but when I do, I keep pushing myself to do more. In order to get back on track, I had to reassess what my priorities were, to not only become more motivated but to feel like myself again.
Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, I started putting steps into place to achieve my goals. Due to the restrictions of isolation, I’ve had to change my approach and timelines.
DON’T COMPARE YOURSELF TO OTHERS
I’ve never been the most confident person, even now I still have days when I doubt every decision I make. I think my lack of confidence comes from finding it difficult to fit in when I was younger. I would always compare myself to others, how they were comfortable in their own skin and wonder how I could change my mind-set.
What I’ve learnt is to not compare your Chapter 1 to someone else’s Chapter 10. Doing this will only knock your confidence, bare in mind that everyone progresses differently, you can’t expect to be moving through life to someone else’s plan. Enjoy the stage you’re at.
“Sometimes people compare themselves to others because they lose sight of who they are and what they want out of life.”
In recent years, I’ve got a lot better at focusing on my own life and not comparing it to others, but sometimes I let my anxiety get the best of me. Having the extra time in isolation may cause some anxiety issues to resurface. So far, I’m feeling good and trying to maintain my mental state by focusing on the goals that are still achievable from home.
DON’T BE AFRIAD TO FAIL
Everyone will experience failure at some point, it’s a rite of passage. Failure has always been seen as a negative thing, when in fact, it gives you the opportunity to learn from your mistakes. You need failure in order to grow, use it as motivation to work harder and achieve what you want in the future. Remember that even the most successful people have failed; actors who couldn’t afford to pay the bills are now worth millions, authors didn’t catch their big breaks until years after they were published and many more examples of how giving up isn’t an option.
The thought of failing clouded my judgement and ambition to succeed from time to time, as a result I wasn’t able to see the best version of myself. I’ve learnt to accept failure and to not avoid doing something due to the fear I won’t succeed. I want to be the person that chases her dreams and accepts the hard work it’s going to take to get to the end result.
If at first you don’t succeed, try something else by learning from the mistakes made and keep looking forward to your next goal.
Making a to-do list is one of my favourite things. Nothing satisfies me more than ticking something off. It gives you a sense of achievement, right? I started making a weekly plan, outlining my shifts at work, times to exercise and other appointments or activities. Due to isolation, my schedule has been a lot more flexible.
It’s not only about creating a structure for my week, I feel more organised when my environment is clean and tidy. I took a little advice from Marie Kondo, spent time decluttering and sold things I didn’t need anymore. It feels so good!
RE-EVALUATE YOUR GOALS
Lack of motivation can come from not having something to work towards. Re-evaluating your goals can help you refocus. Last year, I was very ambitious and as a result I felt overwhelmed and didn’t achieve my goals.
It’s still important to aim high and dream big but also be realistic. Don’t feel the need to stretch yourself so thin or feel pressured to do everything at once. Re-evaluate your goals and take small steps to work towards them and make it more manageable.
We’re only human and sometimes need a way to express our anger or anxiety. It’s healthy to have a rant, to talk about the situation but remember not to dwell for too long. This can be easier said than done, but holding onto negative emotions will only stop you from moving forward. I learnt this the hard way, keeping things bottled up is never the answer. I’m disappointed to say that I tend to moan about silly things, and I’m trying to be more mindful, but it’s a habit that will take a while to break!
Being in isolation can cause stressful situations with housemates or family. You need to move past the issue because who knows how long we’ll be in isolation. When you feel like you need to get out some frustration, try writing in a journal, getting everything out on paper can sometimes help you move past the anger you’re feeling.
GET UP AND STAY ACTIVE
I don’t know about you, but when I’ve had a good night’s sleep I feel refreshed and ready to go. I’m able to wake up early and make the most of the day, instead of lazying around. It’s recommended to have 8 hours sleep per night, but this varies from person to person. Due to my Epilepsy and the mediation I take, I need more rest than others.
It’s not only about getting enough sleep, I feel energised when I stay active. I’ve had to readjust my workouts to be done at home since the gyms and mountain are closed. Since it’s spring, I’ve taken advantage of getting fresh air while doing circuit training outside or going for a bike ride. Spending time outside helps maintain my mental health and gives me a sense of normality.
BE KIND TO YOURSELF
Remember to take care of yourself! We get so busy with day to day life, going to work, doing weekly chores, making time for friends, but, in-between all that mayhem, it’s important to make time for yourself.
I would normally be getting out and exploring, having brunch with the girls or planning a trip. Those things aren’t possible during COVID-19, so I’m having to find other ways to entertain myself. I’m spending time focusing on my PR application, writing content, learning sign language and playing weekly quizzes with friends and family. After isolation is over, everyone will be experts in general knowledge!
And finally, treat yourself as you would your best friend. Be considerate to your emotional state and have confidence in yourself.