Motivation, Oh Motivation, Where are you?!?

April 29, 2011 by flyingdrunkenmonkey

I seem to have lost all motivation since I finished the BabySteps. And you know what? I sort of knew that would happen. Why? Because it always does. I start a new project and am excited and motivated from the beginning. I get any more than a week in and the motivation starts to wane. It doesn’t matter how excited I am about the project it always petters off. I obviously just don’t have the attention span to make it all the way through. I am actually proud of myself that I got through all of the BabySteps but I wish I had been able to keep going. Of course, it isn’t all my “fault”. The first cause was probably coming home from our weekend away and trying to get back in to the swing of things. And it wasn’t long after that I got sick – some flu, virus thing that kept me feeling crap for days. I was shivering and feeling dizzy and nauseous so it was incredibly hard for me to get off the couch, let alone do any cleaning! Thankfully, it was over the long weekend when Mr Monkey had a few days off so he was able to look after Lily for me and my Mum even came up and took us to the doctors and did what I call a “Mum Rescue” – washed all of the dishes, mopped the kitchen, vacuumed the computer room and made sure Lily and I were eating. God I love my Mum – she’s a life saver. Today is the first day I’m actually feeling closer to normal so I made an effort to at least get my morning routine done (although we didn’t wake up until midday). So the bed is made, I did a quick Swish & Swipe, the dishes have been washed, the cat fed, the high chair and table cleaned, and a load of washing put on and hung out. We’ve had terrible weather here lately too so the washing has been piling up. I’m hoping for at least a little sunshine soon.

So back to motivation, I’m not sure what motivates me. It seems to be something *new* – i.e. a new project, a new gadget, a new haircut, a new situation. Of course, the majority of these things cost money which is not really good in the long run. I’ve found in jobs that for the first 6 months or so I have been a great worker and highly motivated but after that I struggle to find things to excite me – no matter how much I love my job.

I recently read a great article from the New Yorker; “THE POSSIBILIAN” by Burkhard Bilger, which looks at the brain and how it perceives time, by focusing on the work of David Eagleman. It’s a long read but definitely worth it. It’s a fascinating look at the brain and it’s capabilities and what time really means to us. However, the part that really stuck out to me was this:

By leaping from topic to topic, he forces his brain to give each problem far more attention than familiarity would allow. “Emerson did the same thing,” he said. “He had a lazy Susan with multiple projects on it. When he’d get bored, he would just spin it and start on something else.”

I feel like this is what I should be doing to keep my motivation going – keeping a few projects going and when I feel motivation waning I can just change to another. However, I suppose that doesn’t really help with things like keeping on track with the housework, but I find that when I’m motivated about one thing, I’m often motivated about others.

So, how do you stay motivated?? Any tips you can share with me?

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