Motivation can be on short supply when you are overwhelmed, unfocused, or have too much on your plate.
In order to focus when you do find intentional work time, avoid these motivation killers that make completing tasks on your to-do list a bit harder.
Many female business owners are juggling their business with their home life, and family commitments. If we work from home or control our schedules, it can be even more tempting to work on the easy stuff or productively procrastinate when motivation to do hard things is low. One of the biggest struggles that brings members to the IMPACT Business Circle, is following through on plans and action steps. Can you relate?
Willpower alone is not enough for most people to just ‘do it’.
And that is ok and normal. You do have important work to get done though, so follow these tips on what to avoid when you are ready to get to work.
You can’t expect to succeed if you only put in work on the days you feel like it.
Working in a crowded space with multiple distractions.
Do you need to sit at the kitchen table or in a high traffic zone? It is like choosing to work in the breakroom if you worked in an office building. Typically the kitchen and living room are considered social areas. You can’t fault family for wanting to talk and take a break while in those spaces.
Answering Your Phone
If you are in a flow state or working productively, answering a call or text can throw you off course. It can cause you to get distracted and move on to something else. Depending on the call or text, it can also change your mood and get you off track.
Usually it is pretty obvious who is calling or texting. You know based on the person, if you are opening up a new distraction by answering. Muster up your self control and tell yourself that you are working and personal calls will have to wait until your predetermined break. This can even include texting. Every time you stop what you are doing to answer, you break your concentration.
Checking social media
Ok, you knew this one was going to be on here. We all know it is a distraction, but we still do it. Like the explanation above, social media can break your concentration, change your mood based on a comment or post you saw, or lead you down a rabbit hole that takes your focus to something less important.
We all think we *should* be able to work with only self accountability, but in reality, it doesn’t work for most people. There is no shame in that. We all do better when we meet a friend to exercise, have a deadline with an external motivator, or know someone will be asking about our progress.
Accountability is key to goal completion. The women in the IMPACT Business Circle get asked about their action steps and progress twice a month at their mastermind calls. You can stick with your *should* or hop on the wagon with those paying for accountability and completing more goals in less time.
Lack of Boundaries
Does your family know when your work hours are? Do you drop everything anytime they need something (even if they could do it themselves)? How do they know when you are working and when you are scrolling? How about your clients? Have you trained them to expect an immediate response?
Sometimes we unknowingly set expectations for clients or family members that make it harder for us to get work done.
What happens if you don’t do the hard stuff? Who is nudging you or keeping you on task?
No strategic action list that leads to your goal
Everyone has their to-do list, whether it is on a scrap of paper, or typed in a digital doc. But do you have an action step list that is specific to your most important goal or task for the day?
It is easy to get overwhelmed and just want to go do something easy when your head is swimming with all of the things you need to do. Overwhelm kills your motivation.
When you have a structured action step list, broken down into the smallest steps, you can simply grab the next one and get to work. No decision fatigue or going back and forth wondering what to do next, and ending up cleaning out a closet.
An optional mindset
If you view your tasks or to-do list as optional, or something that you can always do later (probably due to lack of accountability or deadlines), you are less likely to find the motivation to sit down and complete them.
When the call comes from the local friend to grab coffee, or you are stuck and just don’t feel like working on your marketing plan, you will be more tempted to give in if you feel like that work is just something ‘extra’ you could do, but don’t have to right now.
Motivation comes and goes. When you find yourself needing a boost, check out some ways to prepare for productivity in episode 38 of the Women’s Business Workshop Podcast.
Need some more ideas about how to take action? Grab the Take Action Checklist and get to work!