Motivation isn’t like a light switch

An image of a light switch that can be flicked on and off

How do you view motivation?  Is it all or nothing?  Either all ‘go’ or all ‘no’.  It can be helpful to remember, motivation isn’t like a light switch.

We can easily talk ourselves out of things when we feel less motivated,  and the more we do it, the more difficult it can be to overcome it.

If you can think back to a time where you’ve struggled to get motivated with something, can you remember how you felt about yourself?  I’m guessing it was pretty negatively.

We can start to blame ourselves for things going wrong and the more we avoid situations or taking action, then we are at risk of starting to see ourselves as a failure.   This type of thinking gets us believing that motivation is something we either have or don’t have. And if we don’t have it in that moment, we blame ourselves.

In reality, there are a lot of different factors that impact on our motivation, and it’s normal to feel more or less motivated at different times.  Even when it’s something important or enjoyable.

So if you notice that your motivation is a little unpredictable, go easy on yourself.

Photo credit:  Steve Johnson via Unsplash.com

How can we support ourselves through times of change?

An image of a young person in a confident pose

There’s nothing as certain as change, so they say.  So you’d think we would be able to navigate it with ease, the more we get used to it.  But of course, we know that change can be uncomfortable, and we may even actively avoid it.

But there are ways in which we can support ourselves to make any transition a little easier.

Accept that change is an inevitable part of life.

Our mindset can be the most important tool, so the more comfortable we get with the idea of change, the easier it can be for us to anticipate the changes that will be required.

Take control where you can.

Not all change will be of our own making, and it can be challenging when change gets forced upon us.  And when we feel that things are happening outside of our control, it can feed all sorts of negative thoughts.  But there is always a choice in how we react to the situations we find ourselves in.  We can choose to feel defensive, or we can choose to give it a chance.  If we are really unhappy with the situation that change has led us to, we have the choice to look for an alternative path.

Accept that failure or detours are normal.

Along with being comfortable with change, our mindset around failure is also really important.  If we spend a long time avoiding change because of our fear of failure, we can become stuck and feel hopeless.  Similarly, if we spend a lot of time going over and over our failures, without learning the lessons that comes with them, then that can hold us back too.

The bigger the goal, the likelier it is that you will have a detour or two along the way.  So again, anticipating that our plans may need reviewing from time to time will set us up to deal with hiccups as they arise, and ultimately get us to where we want to be quicker.

Stay in balance.

When we are going through a transition or change, it can be helpful to find some part of our lives which is stable and settled that we can retreat to.  Whether that is spending time on activities that we can lose ourselves in, or spending time with positive and uplifting people, having some time away can help us to process and rebalance.

Photo credit: Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash