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Here’s How to Get Motivated Again if You’re Stuck in a Slump

To be honest, I was lacking quite a bit of motivation before I started writing this. It is ironic, I know, but it puts me in the great position to talk about motivation and how to find it again. I think many of us, myself included, have been getting stuck in that slump that comes from losing our motivation ever since quarantine began in the spring. We began to struggle with the fact that we weren’t able to leave our homes to stay active and occupied with friends or work and that, in and of itself, was enough to take a lot of motivation away. For some of us, there’s been a struggle with motivation long before quarantine began and it’s something that may continue for a while. But that doesn’t mean we should ever stop trying to push forward and pull ourselves out of that slump so that we can find joy in our day instead of stress and worry.

Now, finding motivation is different for everyone. Everyone has their own personal struggles and slumps, but my hope is that you can find something that works for you and can help you become motivated again. The motivation, or lack of motivation, you have won’t change all at once, but taking small steps to change it can end up making a huge difference in the way your day turns out.

Find something you are passionate about

This first one is truly the most important thing when trying to get motivated again. Yes, we need motivation to complete all of the important things like schoolwork and jobs, but when we focus on that we forget about the things that truly make us happy. It can be the smallest thing but finding something you’re passionate about can change everything you do. It can be painting, running, singing, collecting seashells, or even getting completely obsessed with a boyband. When you begin to do the things you’re passionate about you will find a reason to get out of bed and get moving, instead of being on your phone or watching Netflix all day. And once that happens, you’ll begin to find the energy and motivation to do everything you need to do. You’ll begin to fill up part of your day with the things that make you happy, leading to an increase in your motivation to do what needs to be done, as well as what you want to get done.

Make lists

Lists are not only a great way to stay organized, but they are also a great way to take the day one step at  time. Many times, with motivation, it can seem like you have too much to take on all at once. By making lists, you can begin to compartmentalize your day into a series of tasks that may not seem as daunting. As you work your way through your list you start to get that feeling of accomplishment and that’s something that will continue to motivate you further. However, you need to remember that it’s okay if you don’t get to everything on your list. Start with the most important things, that way, if the list becomes to much, you have accomplished something of value to you and you can save the rest for another day.

Think about someone important to you

Oftentimes, motivation can come from sources outside of yourself. That’s not say you aren’t the one motivating yourself, but sometimes it helps to think of others in order to find your motivation again. For example, say you need to finish a homework assignment, but you just can’t seem to pick up your computer. You might want to think about a parent or trusted adult and what they would think if they knew you were not doing what needed to be done. Then think about how they would feel if you did pick up your computer and finish that homework assignment. That sense of approval and acknowledgement you would receive from completing your assignment can help motivate you to just go for it, even if it’s hard in the moment. We can’t always find the motivation within ourselves, but that’s why we have people we trust and admire to help push us out of our slumps.

Listen to music

I believe that listening to music is always a great way to fix the things you’re struggling with and motivation is no exception. There is music for every mood and every feeling, you just have to find the right music for you. Personally, I become really motivated when I listen to the artists I love, especially when I can sing along. Doing that can really lift my mood and make me want to move around, and as long as I’m doing something that isn’t lying on my bed or the couch, I know my motivation is improving. For some, the music might be instrumental or songs from their favorite movie and for others it might be jazz or hip-hop. Start by creating a playlist if songs you love, from there you can decide which type of music and which songs are best suited to help keep you motivated. As long as you find the music that inspires you, you’ll find the motivation you need.

Finding motivation when it’s lacking is never easy. Sometimes it seems impossible. What you need to remember is that you’re not perfect and nobody is. Everyone has difficult days or weeks where it seems impossible to get anything done, but that’s okay. You will find something that will begin to stir up your motivation and it will push you to start doing things differently. Whether it be something from this list, or something different that works for you, you’ll find the way out of your slump. Just believe in yourself. You’ve got this.

Hannah Miner

Illinois State '21

I'm Hannah and I am an Elementary Education major, graduating in the spring of 2021. When I'm not too busy you'll find me painting, listening to music, reading, or working on whichever new project I've gotten myself invested in! I love any opportunity to be creative!
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