What do you do when you just don’t feel like it?
I’ve always been a high achiever. I know what I want and am not scared to go after it. I’ll do whatever it takes to make it happen.
This time was different. I just couldn’t get started.
I wasn’t confused. I knew I was meant to coach women on how to create a multi-passionate business.
I wasn’t afraid. Ok, maybe a little. But that’s normal. Starting something new always brings some anxiety, but it was nothing I couldn’t handle.
I wasn’t lazy. When I’m really into something, I could work 12 hours a day straight without a break (not that I recommend it).
I just… didn’t feel like it. I’d wake up in the morning and hit the snooze button. I’d feel tired and lethargic throughout the day.
I had no energy. No motivation to do anything.
Everyone has days like this. But when a few days turned into weeks, I knew I had to do something about it before things got worse. I had battled depression a few times before. I didn’t want to do it again.
Disclaimer: If you think you’re dealing with depression or another mental issue, please don’t hesitate to seek professional help. There’s no shame in it. It can happen to everyone. Just focus on getting better.
If you’re not dealing with depression, but you feeling that suddenly anything takes too much effort, read on:
When You Feel Overwhelmed
I’m a workaholic. I love what I do so much, it’s hard for me to take time off. But I’m also a high achiever and feel this incredible pressure to always do more.
That’s what you need to do to reach your goals, right? Hustle more. Stay up an hour later. Post more on social media…
More. More. More.
A lot of it is busy work. The stuff I feel like I need to do, but doesn’t really move the needle forward. I’m getting a lot better at prioritizing tasks and realising when I’m wasting my time.
But when I fall into the busy trap, it’s only a matter of time before the smallest task feels like too much work. Next thing you know, you’ve lost all motivation.
You’re looking at your to-do list and you just don’t feel like it. Any of it.
That’s your body’s way of saying, “Take a break, girl!”
What If Everything Is Ok?
Sometimes, the problem isn’t obvious. Heck, you’re not even sure there is a problem.
In 2016, I was living what I thought was my dream. I had managed to turn my blog into a business, get paid to write for online magazines, and live in my dream city.
I couldn’t have been more unhappy. Like, seriously? What was wrong with me?
To the outside world, I looked like I had won the jackpot. Inside, I felt out of alignment. I had made my dream come true only to realise it wasn’t my dream at all.
Your soul can’t lie. It doesn’t matter how good everyone (including yourself) feels you have it, if you’re not living in alignment with your values and purpose, you won’t be happy.
The worst part? You have it so good, you don’t even realise you have a problem until you wake up one morning unable to face the day. You just don’t feel like it.
How To Get Motivated When You Don’t Feel Like It
Everyone has a bad day or a bad week. But if you’re feeling low longer than that, it’s time to do something about it. Here’s how to get back on track when you don’t feel like it:
1. Groom Yourself
I work from home, so when I have a don’t-feel-like-it day, I don’t even bother getting out of bed or having a shower.
I’ll spend all day in my PJs, my greasy hair in a bun pinned on top of my head. I know, gross. But who has never done it before? 😉
Cleanliness is one of the first things to go when you’re feeling down. But when you’re not clean, you feel even worse about yourself. It’s a vicious circle.
If I feel like this more than 2 days in a row, I force myself to get in the shower, give myself a good scrub, put on some clean clothes and spray on some perfume.
I immediately feel better and ready to get back in the game.
2. Practice Self-Care
Be honest: chances are, you’ve started feeling like crap when you’ve stopped taking good care of yourself.
You know what I’m talking about. The sleepless nights you’ve spent working on your business. The takeaway food you absent-mindedly munched on as you rushed to your next appointment. The worked out you skipped because you just didn’t feel like it.
Self-care isn’t a luxury. It’s a necessity. When you don’t take care of your body, your mind starts to suffer, too. Here’s how to get both back on track:
- Eat healthy: Cut back on frozen meals, processed foods and take away. Feed your body nourishing foods, like a tasty avocado toast or a salmon salad, that recharge your energy and boost your mood.
- Exercise: You don’t have to go to the gym. Even going for a walk, dancing to some music in your bedroom, or doing some 5 minute Youtube workout counts. Just get your body moving.
- Hydrate: Drink a glass of water as soon as you feel thirsty. Dehydration is the quickest way to lose focus and motivation.
- Meditate: You don’t have to sit cross-legged and chant for half an hour. You can just focus your attention on your breath for 5 minutes. Or do a mindfulness activity, like journalling or walking in nature. Whatever relaxes you.
- Me-time: Take a few minutes every day to do something you love. Like reading a book. Have a bubble bath. Paint a picture. Whatever relaxes and recharges you.
3. Create A Motivation Routine
Do you know Tony Robbins follows an elaborate routine to pump himself up before getting on stage?
The highlights include jumping on a mini trampoline, submerging himself in 57 degrees water, doing a little dancing, and a lot of power posing.
If he didn’t feel like it before, this routine is guaranteed to get him in the mood and give him his motivation back.
He’s not the only one. Every top performer, be they an athlete, singer, or comedian, has a motivation routine they gets them in the right mental state – whether they feel like it or not.
You can create your own motivation routine, too. And it doesn’t have to be as complicated as Tony’s.
If your goal is to exercise, you can prepare your workout clothes the night before. When morning comes and you don’t feel like going to the gym, tell yourself, “I’ll just put my shoes on.” Once you do, you’ll be more likely to follow through and go to the gym.
Or before you begin work, you can listen to an inspiring podcast, drink a glass of water, or write in your journal three things you’re grateful for.
Make sure that your motivation routine is:
- Simple: If it’s too long or elaborate, you’ll find excuses to skip it.
- Fun: If you don’t enjoy you, you won’t do it.
- Purposeful: It needs to get you closer to your goal, not distract you away from it.
Once you have your motivation routine, do it every single time before getting started on your task. It’ll help your brain get in the right mood, whether you feel like it or not.
4. How Are You Feeling?
If you don’t feel like doing anything for too many days in a row, it’s time to do an emotional checkup.
Grab pen and paper (or type away at your keyboard) and answer the following questions:
- How are you really feeling?
- Did something happen to make you feel this way? Was there a trigger?
- Have you been taking care of yourself lately?
- Is there anything worrying or bothering you atm?
Get honest with yourself. I know it’s uncomfortable, but you need to get to the root of the problem to get out of this low state.
Sometimes, the answer is as easy as getting some much needed rest and eating a home-cooked meal.
Other times, you’re dealing with some serious crap and need to lick your wounds for a while. That’s ok. Do whatever you need to to get better.
5. Reconnect With Your Why
Are you working hard, day in and day out, to get your business off the ground, but nothing is happening?
Are you working overtime to finish all your projects, but your boss doesn’t seem to appreciate your efforts?
Are you stuck on that book/artwork/project and don’t know how to move forward?
It’s easy to get discouraged when you don’t see your hard work paying off. You’re questioning if it’s all worth it. Maybe you should just give up.
At least for today. Today, you just don’t feel like it. That’s ok. We all have days like this. But when a day turns into a week or month, it’s time to go back to the beginning. It’s time to go back to why it all started.
Why did you start your business or embarked on that creative project?
Did it just feel like fun or are you trying to make a difference through your work, inspire others, help as many people as possible?
Maybe the work you have to do this very moment doesn’t excite you. Maybe you’re stuck in a rut or have writer’s block.
The best way to get over it is to reconnect to your purpose. Think of why this works matters. Then go do it, gorgeous.
Struggling to reconnect with your why? Click on the button below to subscribe to my newsletter and receive the Purpose Finder Worksheet.