After well-deserved time to relax, enjoy hobbies, and spend time with family and friends, it can be tough to find motivation when returning to work. During the holidays, it seems that the world powers off, and you may find yourself struggling to gather enthusiasm and be productive. Though the back-to-work blues could feel daunting, there are many ways to get back in gear, set goals, and establish your intentions for the new year. Here are some tips to reset, and get into action for 2020.
One of the main reasons for lack of motivation is that every task ahead feels monumental and like it must be completed immediately. This feeling can leave you flustered, rushed, and not sure where to start. To combat being overwhelmed by the office to-do list, it is essential to create a schedule. This outline can encompass your goals for the week, or it can detail a daily breakout of time. You can prevent panic, by listing what you have in front of you and condensing it into time-sensitive brackets. Once you set your schedule: stick to it. For example, if you give a project an hour window, do not exceed that limit. Set a stopping point ten minutes before the deadline – then take a break before moving onto the next assignment.
Revisit Your Routine
During the holiday season or a vacation – most people abandon their daily routines and replace them with a more leisurely pace. In addition to creating a schedule, revisiting your routine may be the catalyst you need to act. Habitual steps during the day help to create a fallback plan when you don’t know what to do next; by creating a pattern, you can take immediate action because you have a precedent of what you usually do. If you already have a tried-and-true system for the week, it is helpful to take a look at areas for improvement. Is there a way to streamline your mornings to add time for incidentals like traffic or an anticipated errand? Can you get into the cycle of nightly prep as opposed to completing tasks later? When you are accustomed to a specific practice, it becomes that much easier to get going when lacking motivation.
Sometimes, despite your best-laid plans, you cannot seem to get started by planning or building a routine. As the saying goes: the best way out is always through. Procrastination and giving into distractions can make your lack of motivation worse. To combat this, start on a small, manageable task – without any interference such as checking the internet or catching up with a coworker. Buckling down and tacking an item on your to-do list will remind you of your capabilities and provide a boost of momentum. Once you see that a project is not that bad, you will likely be compelled to do more. If not, at least you started, and you can reward yourself with a coffee break.
A sense of monotony and too much predictability at work can fuel your dread and resistance the first few weeks back from the holidays. If you are not growing or being challenged in your field, there are ways to change that. Looking for outlets to expand your horizons can not only provide personal benefit, but it can propel your career motivation. Find a mentor, take a skills course, or even read up on what you currently do. You will discover that there is more to learn, and there are many opportunities to continue your education and upskill. In the future, you may have access to promotion and taking on specialized projects in your current role. Advancing your knowledge in this way not only makes you a valuable employee but will motivate you to focus on your existing ventures.