How To Find Your Motivation

“I’m having a hard time staying motivated!”
“I lack the energy.”

Sound familiar? It’s quite the common refrain of folks who seek out coaching. When we hate our job, or feel lost or out of control, it’s motivation (or the lack thereof) that’s often to blame.

And many of us understand that motivation is an inside job. No one can motivate us but us. They can inspire us, teach us, maybe even threaten us, but we are motivated by the things that matter to us — not by the external forces.

So how do you tap into it when it appears nowhere in sight?

It’s all about reframing.

If you’re not motivated to complete a project, it’s usually because you don’t care about that project. So reframe it, and tie it to something you do care about.

If you’re a relationally-motivated person who’s stuck doing a job that’s not relational at all, find a different connection. 

Remind yourself: This is not a data entry project that I’m doing to get a paycheck. No way; that’s simply not motivating.

Rather: This is a project I’m in charge of because my boss trusted me with it. My boss and my team care about me, and if I can do this well I will make their lives easier. Now that dull project is about the relationships you have at work, and if relationships are what drive you, well, you’ve just built yourself a lot more motivation.

It doesn’t have to be relationships. Take some time to reflect on what really motivates you, the parts of your job and/or life that make you smile and feel joy. Name those and some of the underlying reasons why they have this impact on you and you can figure out how to harness that motivation to pull you through the project you’re simply not motivated to finish.

Tie them together, and you’ll be surprised to see how much more satisfying that work becomes.