Unmotivated and Inactive
"I'll get to it."
"Just a 30 minute nap."
"Tomorrow, I'll wake up early and spend all day getting it done."
Any of these sound familiar? If so, then welcome to my world!
I'm not sure if you've noticed, but I haven't posted in a few weeks. Am I happy about this? NO. Is it one thousand percent my fault? YES.
There will always be family issues that need your attention, sometimes your dog needs surgery, other times your sister comes home from college and you just want to hang. Life happens. And it keeps happening! So, using that as an excuse just isn't good enough and frankly, it isn't fair to your future self. This post is completely inspired by my own shortcomings but I'm hoping I'm not the only one cheating themselves out of greatness and I can get across to someone else.
Here's what I'm most annoyed about: When I was a full time student with a part time job, all I wanted was more time to write. When I graduated and started working full time, all I wanted was more time to write. Now, with Corona out in the streets, I have all the time to write that I've been asking for and I'm not writing as much as I could be. I have a writing accountability partner that I know must be so frustrated with me because I'm not writing as frequently or to the caliber that I promised (I'm so sorry girl, I'm getting back on track, I promise!).
So, what's the issue? I love writing. I want to write as a career and write until God tells me I can't write anymore. I want to become a better writer and hopefully soon, a known one. Then, why aren't I writing?!!
Here's the reality I was hit with during some self reflection.
Just because you aren't doing something, doesn't mean you're a lazy bum. The problem is, it's easy for us to get and feel overwhelmed. If there's one thing about me, it's that I want to do everything. I am currently learning French, perfecting my Spanish, practicing yoga, writing a script, editing a short film, reading a novel, working out everyday, trying to be the best plant and dog mom there is, looking for gigs, trying to keep this blog afloat, on top of catching up on shows and self care. That's a lot! Each tasks comes with its own specific goals and necessary routines and to master anything, you have to do it every day. Adding a bit of everything into my daily routine is a mission and a half and that's not including social and family time nor is it taking into consideration, soon I will be employed again.
So, lesson number 1 is priorities! You have to prioritize 1-2 things. These top choices are what you focus on every day. The rest of your interests have to go into the hobby category and you can't hold on to them too tightly. For me, my top two are writing and working out. Reading kind of goes hand in hand with writing but my leisure reading that doesn't have a specific goal to help my writing will go into the hobby pile as well. I'm lucky to have a family equally as obsessed with my dog as I am so I know she's in good hands and everything else, as much as I love my other interests, needs to come second!
It's also natural to want to rest. I just can't help but take a nap when the sunlight comes through my room just right. Warmth of the sun but chill of the fan? With a thick blanket? Come on, anyone would fall victim to that. That leads us to lesson number 2, learn how to nap!
The problem is, my naps are never 30 minutes. They're more like 3 hours. And I know this full and well before I take each nap. I used to think I was lazy but the real issue is, I'm just too comfortable! Who would want to get out of their bed to do work? But naps aren't all bad and can even be helpful to productivity, if done right. Plus, it's better to listen to your body than ignore the urge to nap because then you'll solely think about napping and how tired you are for the rest of the day. Recently, a friend of a friend gave me this tip: Nap somewhere other than your bed. When you're in your bed, your brain knows that's the place where you go to sleep for hours at night. Naturally, your body will get ready to sleep for a few hours instead of 20-30 minutes but if you nap somewhere like the couch, your body will know it's just resting for a short period of time!
Personally, my house is way too loud to nap on the couch but one thing I have started doing is a trick I use sometimes when I have something really important in the morning. I put my phone across the room. That way, I have to physically get up and out of my bed to turn off the alarm instead of just flicking a hand to hit snooze a bunch of times.
You can also simply rest if you're not big on napping. Set your timer for 20 minutes and just sit or lay down and rest your body, then get back to whatever it is you need to do!
The last lesson is DO SOMETHING. Anything. Even if I write 5 words one day, at least I did it. Even if I run 5 minutes one day, it's more than I would've run if I stayed in my pajamas on the couch. You gotta do something just to prove to yourself that you can! You might surprise yourself and do more work than you were planning on. That happens to me all the time. I'll sit down to write a page or 2 of a piece and I wind up busting out 16 pages of on-the-fly inspiration. You have to get in the habit of doing, even if what you're doing seems small.
This is your life and you're responsible for the actions you take. Lack of motivation happens with everything and isn't really a solid excuse to not do something. You have the capability, even when you're not motivated! So, prioritize your interests, listen to your body and nap or rest (correctly) when you need to, and make moves no matter how small!
There are a bunch of tips and tricks for getting out of slumps or lack of motivation! What are some of yours?