Motivation Saturdays: Getting Started

Hi lovely readers,

Happy Motivation Saturday! I want to talk about what I think is the most difficult aspect of motivation: getting started. When I suffer from depression and anxiety I can become paralyzed, sometimes not leaving my bed for hours or even days. Either I feel like I don’t know what to do with myself, or I feel frozen in anxiety because of how daunting the tasks ahead are. Today I’m going to share some tips for just plain getting started on what you need to get done.

  1. Have a plan. I like to write out exactly what it is I want to accomplish, and then reorder the tasks according to how accessible they are to me, in my mental state, and order of importance. The things I find hardest to do, for example, are things that require me to be active, like working out or cleaning. School work, writing blog posts, or anything where I can be in my bedroom and sitting down is not so hard for me. So depending on my mood, I order my tasks based on that. If I’m really feeling stuck, I start with the easier ones. For example, today, I’m starting my morning with this blog post. But if I was feeling less, well, stuck, I would go right into organizing my closet like I need to.
  2. Get an accountabili-buddy. If I really don’t feel intrinsically motivated to get out of bed, I text or call a friend and ask them to give me a count down to starting and then to check up on me for progress reports or pictures. Knowing I’m accountable to someone makes me feel obligated, but not in a negative way (!!) because my friends are supportive and loving, to get my stuff done.
  3. Remind yourself of the ‘whys’. My biggest why is that I know I feel better about myself if I feel accomplished at the end of the day. Sometimes my why is that I want to be successful someday, or that I just don’t want to be bored and depressed anymore.
  4. Set timers. I find that if I set a timer as to when to start and I give myself a few more minutes to do nothing I feel like I’ve gotten the best of both worlds: relaxation time and productivity time. Then I like to set a timer for the task itself. Some things should be split up into separate work periods. For example, organizing my closet is a 2 hour task. I can do school work for hours no problem but standing and sorting through clothes for 2 hours is a bit much for me. So I try to split it up into half hour segments.
  5. Just start. Hey, you can quit if it really is as awful as you expected! But I can guarantee it won’t be. Count down from 10, then get off of that chair or that bed and walk directly to your task or open that book. Tell yourself if you want to stop you can, but I’m almost positive that once you get going you won’t feel like quitting any time soon, because productivity feels good!

Thanks for stopping by, lovely readers, and have a wonderful weekend.

Lots of love,

Liz

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