Life can get to you. Whether it’s about your job not challenging you as much as it used to, or feeling like your motivation at home is lagging way behind – once the ball starts rolling downhill, it can be hard to stop and start back up again. You might feel burned out and overworked, without any way of getting those long-lost feelings of motivation and productivity back. But don’t let yourself get too down! There are different ways you can improve your productivity, so why not give it a try? Here is an overview of the top ways to help you work through your slump and increase your sense of engagement in what you do – be it at work or in your personal life.
1. Learn More
Understanding yourself and what makes you feel a certain way or do the things you do is a big step in getting your productivity back on track. There’s a definitive link between life skills and business skills, so the best way to improve your job performance is to better yourself. Whether you read books on how to avoid distractions and stay on top of your meetings, or start using a daily planner, journaling, learning more about the different methods you can use, and about yourself is a great way to increase your productivity. Productivity, at the end of the day, is about the willingness to commit to something and the discipline to take the necessary steps in order to see it through. So, why not start by looking into what you can do to get more of these skills?
2. Set A Long-Term Goal
Getting too comfortable in your daily routine can have negative effects on not only productivity but also your state of well-being. The best way to work through this is to set a long-term goal for yourself that will help you rekindle that motivation and commitment that brought you where you are today. Whether it’s something as relatively simple as getting to a certain weight, or as big and ambitious as quitting your job and starting work on your own business, set a goal that will make you want to go out and get it. The most important thing is that you choose something you really feel passionate about so that you can see it as something that’s worth the effort. If looking too far into the future causes a feeling of anxiety for you, you could also set a goal of creating a new healthy habit for yourself like drinking more water or getting more sleep.
3. Have Small Milestones
Starting something new can be hard, and achieving it even harder. If your long-term goal is so big that it won’t be possible to achieve even in a year’s time, you might lose your motivation after a while. This is why making sure you have milestones to look forward to along the way will make your goal feel more achievable. Whether it’s something as simple as taking a short walk after work, or how many glasses of water you need to drink before noon, having small goals that are easy to reach will make your journey to bigger ones feel more doable. When you feel like you’ve accomplished something, it’s easier to take on the next one. That said, it’s always a good idea to make your milestones time-sensitive. That way, you’ll always be able to see exactly how much time and effort that separates you from your final goal, and you can curb any potential procrastination tendencies.
4. Implement A Reward System
The best way to make sure you’ll follow through on your goals is by making them fun, and what’s more fun than a reward system? Whether it’s a simple task like getting to watch five episodes of your favorite TV show or coming back home early so you can spend time with the family, giving yourself something nice for every step you take towards your goal will make the process easier for you. The trick here is to make sure that your rewards are both relatively simple to achieve, and don’t take too much time. Maybe it’s something like getting your favorite takeout meal, having a glass of wine at home with your spouse, or going to the movies with friends. Whatever you decide on, just make sure it’s something that will motivate you and that won’t take too long to implement.
5. Hold Yourself Accountable
Just like it’s important to realize what motivates you, it’s also important to recognize when you might be giving yourself a pass that you wouldn’t give to others. Are you sometimes making excuses for yourself? Do you come up with a reason why you can’t do something when in reality it’s just that you don’t want to? This is an easy pattern that can be broken if you just hold yourself accountable for your behavior. If someone else did the same thing would you be more lenient or would you tell them they need to get their act together? It’s obvious that, if it’s the latter, you need to recognize and admit that you’re not doing your best at the moment. However, it’s equally important to hold yourself accountable if you’re being too hard on yourself. Making yourself feel like you’re never enough can also be a big contributing factor when it comes to a lack of productivity.
While it may not be easy to stay motivated, knowing what works for you will make accomplishing your goals a lot easier. Set small milestones, keep yourself accountable, and enjoy the process with a reward system. Once you’ve got a few of those things down, it’ll become easier to focus on your main goal and accomplish what you want.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism