After the struggle of planning a multi-country backpacking trip for two people, which suddenly became three, while balancing a freelancing schedule, a blog, a day-to-day job, and a relationship, I sometimes fall into bed exhausted. It’s hard to wake up feeling motivated, even after my regular IV of coffee.
While I highly recommend not operating on this level at all times of the month, I feel very lucky to have found a system that keeps my brain *somewhat* focused, motivated, and productive enough to juggle my workload.
Surely there’s not a single formula that works for everyone, but these have worked for me.
1. Perfect your Posture
Without a doubt, I am at least half as productive laying down on my stomach trying to blog or read as I am sitting in a chair. Don’t allow your work space to share your sleeping space. Not only will you become fatigued faster, but I personally spend more time adjusting myself for comfort than I do focusing on the task at hand.
2. Get Active
There is scientific evidence behind this one, guys! You will get more done after you spend time exercising. And you will feel good about it.
Even a quick 20 minute cardio sesh is enough to get that brain re-energized after work so you can power through evening tasks.
I’m lucky enough to have free Wifi at my gym, so after my workout I can spend a few minutes blogging or writing while my boyfriend finishes his *always-extra-long-why-are-we-still-here-its-been-two-hours* workouts.
3. The Sticky Note Theory
I probably single-handedly support the post-it note industry. I have 3 calendars filled with sticky notes, a system of sticky notes on my mirror, hand-held scheduling book, and even virtual ones on my desktop. (RIP cute background)
Why do I have so many sticky notes? Because I write things down all the time.
What do I write down? Everything.
I can’t tell you how many times I have thought of something brilliant, only to forget the passing thought and be unable to recall it later. Or, how many times I have laid awake at night, ruminating on a task I needed to get done first thing in the morning. Well, folks, those days are gone. Instead, I whip out a handy sticky-note, write that shit down, and let my mind rest.
4. The Power of the Notebook
I have a bound journal full of curse words, musings, and other junk that I carry with me where ever I go. Whenever I am feeling anxious, angry, or otherwise emotional, I whip that beast out and write about it. It helps me get through whatever I am feeling without abusing those around me with whatever residual crud I have on my mind.
Usually, I find that a quick 5-10 minute journaling session allows me to let go of whatever I was ruminating about. Something about being journaling allows me to come to conclusions or find the root cause of my problem.
5. Write down NYE Resolutions that stick
This is a big one.
I write yearly NYE Resolutions. I focus on a few aspects of my life I would like to improve on, and try to be as tangible as possible. Then, I break up the whole thing into quarters, months, or any other plausible deadline, and try to stick to it.
2015 was a year of career change. I wrote about focusing on get a TESOL certificate, and teaching abroad, which I accomplished! This year is a bit different. I wrote about blog growth, as well as personal development and relationship goals I felt were important.
When you live your life with purpose, it’s easy to remember what is truly important to you and what is frivolous distractions might be hindering your overall progress.
6. Internet Distractions
Do yourself a favor. Open up a browser, and set your homepage to your blog, or a website that you find either: A) motivating or B) not distracting. Do NOT set your homepage to facebook, or any other social media site. (Sorry Reddit and Imgur. This just isn’t going to work for me anymore)
While this one might seem obvious, I can’t tell you how many times I have opened up my browser with the intent on working, only to find myself mindlessly surfing the web looking at garbage. Just don’t do it. When you have your browser set to open to a motivational site, you are less likely to look at your google homepage “favorites”, aren’t you?
7. Surround yourself with motivation
Color Therapy: Green is the most motivational color. Place something green in your direct line of site on your desk, be it a plant, or a primarily green photo.
Aroma Therapy: Rosemary, citrus, ginger, and eucalyptus are all refreshing and energizing smells- great to keep you motivated and with higher energy.
Declutter: Create a distraction free zone on your desk. Self explanatory.
And there you go! Hopefully these help you kick-butt in whatever you are trying to accomplish.
Do you have any tips for keeping yourself motivated? Id love to hear them- send me a shout out through email or comment below.