13 Fast Tips On How To Get Motivated To Work

Sigh. It’s time to work. Somehow, we’ve got to figure out how to get motivated to work. Not easy. So, what can we do to make this day good, fun, worthwhile and productive?

One of these 13 “how to get motivated to work” ideas will work. I just know it! 

I could binge watch Netflix. Nah, I did that last night. Plus, I’m at work.

I could waste time shopping on Amazon for an anti-dog-barking thinga-majiggy. I really need that one. But, I probably shouldn’t shop on the internet on company time. Unless it’s work related of course. I wonder, can I bring my dog to work so I can shop on the internet? I’ll have to think about that one.

Um…I could re-organize my desk. That’s actually a good one. It makes me feel productive and no one can peak in at me and accuse me of not looking like I’m productive.

I’ve got plenty of work to do. THAT’S not a problem. In fact, probably like you, the AMOUNT of work is never ending. It’s getting motivated to DO IT that’s the problem.

So, I’m going to help us both out. 

I thought back to the days when I’ve got the blah’s and couldn’t seem to get in gear, and THEN somehow I got into gear and had a productive day. Turns out I figured out some things that actually work. So, here is a list of: 

13 Things You Can Do Right Now to Get Unstuck and Get Motivated To Work:

These have all worked for me. So, pick one and go do it and I just betcha your day will get unstuck.

1. Go do an act of kindness – Yup, it works. When we are feeling blue, it’s waaaay too easy to slip into the black hole of self-pity. All of that “woe is me” thinking doesn’t help in the least. So, stop it and go do something nice for someone else. Get out of your own head and make someone else’s day. I mean seriously, what have you got to lose? (Except a case of the blahs).

• Send an email to your mom, or dad, or someone who invested in you growing up and say “thanks” – Maybe say a bit more than just the word thanks. You get the idea.

• Get up and tell a co-worker something you appreciate about them. Maybe even ask them if you can help them out with something. After they pick up their jaw off the floor, I’m sure they’ll appreciate the gesture. 

• Clean out the work-fridge. No one ever seems to do that job and it will be considered a monumental act of kindness of epic proportions! 

2. Re-organize Your desk – Yeah, I put that in here. Start with a corner, get it nice and clean and then move on from there. It’s kinda like making your bed in the morning. It just makes everything else seem to fall into place. Plus, now you have room to put your bagel and coffee.

I don’t know what it is about a clean desk, but the psychology of it totally works. It’s a Jedi Mind Trick, but only on yourself.

“There are no lazy, unmotivated workers here.” Says the shiny surface of the clean desk, reflecting your face. 

“There are no lazy, unmotivated workers here.” Says your face back to the desk

See? It works!

3. Do a Mental Data Dump – I learned this trick in some Time Management class somewhere (that’s as close a reference as you’re getting from me ‘cause I seriously can’t remember where I heard this tip). 

What you do is get a clean piece of paper and write everything down, and I mean EVERYTHING that’s stuck up in that brain of yours which you need to get done. Now, you have your master list of to-do’s! As more stuff claws its way into your brain, just chuck it onto the list to keep that gray matter clutter free and smokin’ productive.

The course also taught me to prioritize and that was pretty good advice. So, I take the top 6 most important things and schedule them into my day. When I manage to knock those out I feel pretty much like Rockstar hands-raised-high in front a shouting, adoring crowd. Yeah, I do that inside my mind. Lord knows it will never happen in reality. 

This tip is actually quite amazing at lifting your spirits and clearing mental clutter, so get to cleaning!

4. Watch A Motivational Video – You are probably wasting time on the internet already, why not be productive about it. Right? 

As much as I think it would be interesting to be a motivational guru with the side-face mic, ripped abs and hoarse voice from yelling at minions to “SUCK IT UP AND PUSH THROUGH THE PAIN!” I’m just not that guy. I do enjoy watching them on the internet though!

They really know how to motivate people. I get all tingly and eager when I’m told “You can DO it!” I don’t know why it works, but it does. 

So, with that in mind, Here is one that will really jack you up.

Good luck staying unproductive after watching that video! 

5. One-Two-Three-Pray – This one is SUPER powerful! Here’s how it works. 

First you think of 3 very small, very doable things and then you do them and then you pray. Give thanks to God. Tell Him you appreciate the day. Then repeat. When I’m really, really down, this is the best strategy for getting unstuck. You block out ALL the stuff you have to do and focus only on the tiny little step directly in front of you. 

Pro Tip: To get unstuck, choose a ridiculously easy action as your first step. 

Think about it. The psychology behind why you’re feeling stuck right now probably has something to do with feeling overwhelmed. You’re paralyzed because of how BIG the thing is that you’ve got to face – and it shuts you down emotionally. So, choose something…anything… that gets you going in that direction and make sure it’s very, very doable.

“All I have to do is look at my to do list. Just look at it. Nothing more. I can do that.” You tell yourself that and then you look at you to do list. 

“Next, all I need to do is find the easiest, simplest thing on that list. Just find it is all I’m going to do. Got it. It’s this one here.” Now your cooking. You’ve got a bit of momentum.

“Finally, I just got to start doing it. I’ll just pick up the phone and dial. Not even going to worry about what I’m going to say, I’m just going to try and call this person. I’ll probably get their voice mail anyway. That’s all. I’ll just call them so I can cross this off my to-do list.” And BAM! Before you know it, you’ve got the first thing done on your list for the day. Take a moment and give thanks, or pray for a friend, or ask God to help you with something. 

Then, think of the next very easy, very simple three things you can do. Before you know it, you’ll be rolling and productive. 

Choose one and do it and I’ll see you at the end of the day all successful and shiny and happy-like. 

6. Incentivize Yourself – That’s right, reward that lazy butt of yours for doing what you’re already supposed to do. Hah! It works!

I’m sorry, I just called you a lazy butt. However, in my defense I’ve got a lazy butt too. So, we are kinda on the same team; partners in this “let’s get our butt’s motivated” thing. 

And incentives really work. After work, choose a reward and indulge. You did it! You went to work and put in a full 8 hours. Woot for you! 

As Woody Allen says, “Showing up is 80% of life.”

So, what are you going to choose as your reward? In case nothing pops into your mind, here are a few suggestions:

• Donuts! Who doesn’t love that sweet glaze that makes your fingers all sticky and sweet?

• Hit a bucket of balls at your local golf range. Who cares if you swing a driver like a baseball bat? Sometimes it’s really nice just to smack the heck out of something. You can call the balls names if you want before you blast them off. It’s good exercise too (that is if you don’t pull a muscle – be careful).

• Binge watch The Office guilt free. You earned it.

• BBQ a thick, juicy steak and top it with blue cheese crumbles. Thinking about THAT will get you through the day!

7. Phone a friend – Sometimes you just need to hear a friendly voice telling you it’s going to be OK. Find a friend and ask them if they will encourage the snot out of you. You know, it’s Ok to ask for what you need sometimes. 

My go to friend’s name is Ron. I found him at church. We go out to breakfast sometimes and as he tackles his hash browns, pancakes and eggs, he encourages me. He’s a super great listener and always says the nicest things about me. Everyone needs a friend like that. If you don’t have one, then choose someone who is an encourager and be that kind of a friend to them. 

8. Take a walk – Seriously, get up and walk around. You need to get your juices flowing and sitting down is letting them pool into your shoes. Not only is that not good for your brain, it’s not good for your shoes.

So, stand up, walk a flight of stairs or two and get some exercise. Take some deep breaths and walk faster, then walk even faster after that. Go until you break at least a little sweat. Then that’s probably enough to shift your energy and kick-start you into productive mode. There’s even science to back up how great this idea is!

Standing Made Workers 46% More Productive

“The researchers examined the productivity differences between two groups of call center employees over the course of six months and found that those with stand-capable workstations–those in which the worker could raise or lower the desk to stand or sit as they wished throughout the day–were about 46 percent more productive than those with traditional, seated desk configurations. Productivity was measured by how many successful calls workers completed per hour at work.” 

– Science Daily, quoting a study done by Texas A&M Health Science School of Public Health

9. Ask for accountability – Set yourself up for success, not failure. I use this motivation strategy when I have a big, nasty project I’m procrastinating on. The internal stress can get as high as a stack of rocky road ice cream buckets.

So, asking a friend, co-worker, spouse or even your boss to check-in with you at a particular time to see if you’ve completed whatever milestone in the project is a powerful motivator.  

10. Read motivational quotes – Look, all you really need is some kind of zip-zap to kick you into gear. Once you start taking action the law of momentum takes over and you’ll start rolling. So, here are 10 motivational quotes to help you get going. 

When you find one that inspires you, take action! Use these truths as fuel to fire you up and get going.

Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it. 

– Charles Swindoll

The secret to getting ahead is getting started.

– Mark Twain

It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.

– Confucius

All of our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them.

– Walt Disney

I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.

– Thomas Edison

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.

– Eleanor Roosevelt

Success is the sum of small efforts repeated day-in and day-out.

– Robert Collier

Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone.

– Pablo Picasso

The only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary.

– Vidal Sassoon

There is no traffic jam along the extra mile. 

– Roger Staubach

11. Evaluate your job situation – Is this the first time you’ve faced your workday and felt unmotivated? No? Well, since it’s happened before maybe there’s more to it than just a case of the blues. 

Perhaps it’s time to ask yourself some tough questions:

Q. Do I enjoy my job?

Q. Do I like my co-workers?

Q. Do I respect my boss?

Q. Am I making a genuine difference?

Q. Am I on the right career track?

If you said no to any of these questions, then it’s time to sit down and have a serious talk with yourself. Listen, life is too short to be stuck in a job you hate. So, you need to evaluate if this is the right place for you.

One word of caution however. I encourage you to not just bail on you job because it’s hard. ALL jobs are hard, or at least every single job has hard things about them. 

Maybe you are being squeezed because you need to grow in your character. If the challenges you are facing in this job are the same challenges you faced in previous jobs, then maybe its you. 

Changing jobs isn’t going to fix that, it will only delay the character-building work you need to do. So, might as well embrace it, buck up and start the hard work of becoming your best self. 

12. Rock Out – Yup, grab your music player and pop on that song that always gets you going. Mine is 46 and 2 by Tool. There are few songs that build like that one, that rock like that one, that tear up my soul and put it back together like that one. And like us Tool fans say, 

“All my neighbors are Tool fans. I make sure of it.” 

Here is the song if you wanna play it while you read the rest of the post. Caution: this will rock your soul. You’ve been warned. Tool – 46 and 2.

13. Get tough on yourself – Ok, no more Mr. Nice Guy. If you’ve read this far and you are STILL procrastinating WHAT THE HECK DUDE?

Stop it. Step up. Take responsibility. This is YOUR life. YOU are the only one responsible for it. So stop making excuses and do what you need to do. Your job is paying you to get your work done. Are you a thief? NO! You’re not, so stop acting like one. Turn in a solid day’s work. That is YOUR responsibility, you agreed to it when you took your job. 

Nothing is going to get done until you get going. What are you waiting for? If it hasn’t happened from reading the suggestions above, let’s face it, it’s not going to happen by reading about motivation. 

That leaves YOU! And YOU are better than whatever unmotivated feeling happens to be rattling around inside of you. You can do this! You have to do this! You WILL do this!

Say to yourself, “I’m done putting things off. I’m starting right now. No excuses. Here I go.” 

Say it, out loud. Now get going and make is a good, fun, worthwhile and productive day!

You can do it!

To Your Success!

J.T. Taylor