It’s no secret that we have all struggled in one way or another during the most recent COVID lockdown – particularly with motivation.
Whether you’re studying, working, raising children, or all of the above… The motivation to actually get things done around the house or to study or work is minimal. Being stuck within four walls all day with the same people (or no people at all) takes its toll on all of us in both similar and unique ways.
I can’t count the number of times I have sat in front of my computer willing myself to type something (anything!) for hours on end to no avail. After all, it’s much easier to binge watch some TV, right?
But the thing is, no one is there to force you to do what needs to be done. No one, that is, but you. You have to be the hero of your story and FORCE yourself to do the things that you don’t want to do. One task at a time, small baby steps – and the more you do, the easier it will become.
Set a schedule, map out your day like you would if you were in the office or at school. Schedule a walk every day, schedule your lunch break, even schedule some down time! Make plans and stick to them.
The more you stick to that schedule and your plans, the less you will have to work to motivate yourself. After a while, you’ll notice it start to become as natural as breathing.
The real mission will be getting our heads around the complete change in our schedules when lockdown ends, and the world goes back to (somewhat) normal. Some of you might find you have to start all over again in order to keep your motivation going. Or ease into normal daily life again.
That change alone can be extremely anxiety-provoking – like a post-apocalyptic world, exiting the bunker for the very first time in months. Patience and baby steps are key.
Build a new schedule that incorporates the following to stay motivated, as many of you will still be working from home.
- Schedule walks and/or coffee with one of two close friends every few days to build up socialisation.
- Schedule in time for work and/or study. Even come up with your own reward system for each task accomplished. (E.g. If I finish writing that article, I’ll do a DIY facial that night or have a bath)
- If you’re going back into the office, but feeling particularly anxious about it – discuss with your boss the possibility of gradually moving back into the office. Three days at home, two in the office, until you build up to a comfortable pace.
- Organise plans with friends and family in advance, and make sure to stick to those plans. It’s easy, after being stuck at home for so long, to get stuck in that comfortable rut. But life is calling! The habit of cancelling can become an all too easy trap to fall into!
- Talk about your struggles openly. We’re all feeling them on different levels, and you might find some people have come up with some great strategies to cope and stay motivated that could work for you!
- Schedule in those chores, do not use them as procrastination! (We’ve all been there.) Allow time to complete them on set days, and never allow them to interrupt your time for work or study.
- Family time… Yep, sometimes even life during COVID can be hectic. And let’s face it, you’ve probably all been driving each other crazy over the past few months. Schedule in some time to do something fun outside of the house with your family, simply enjoy each other’s company.
Whatever you do, whatever works for you… Please remember to take your time and be kind to yourself. But make sure to be your own boss and stick to those plans!
AND You Can Always Ask for Help!
If none of these is helping, please seek professional advice and help. If you would like to talk to someone WAYS offers free counselling services for young people and their families, please call us on 9365 2500.