Today I would like to devote myself to a very special topic in the context of “Female Empowerment“, namely “Motivation”. Let’s face it, with the myriad of roles we take on every day, sometimes it’s not easy to stay motivated.
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My clients and customers regularly tell me that they feel exhausted, tired and unmotivated, even if they actually enjoy the tasks.
By the way, joy and demotivation are not contradictory for me. For example, I can basically enjoy sports. However, there are days when my body signals me that it is not fit or even demotivated today.
What’s the saying? Where there is light, there is also shadow
We’re a little blinded by the social media glitterati. So it’s not uncommon for us to feel unmotivated when the kids are screaming at home, while online it feels like every other person is on vacation. Accordingly, the topic of motivation has not only been an exciting field since the beginning of the pandemic, and the world of work is also eager to address it.
Basic research has been looking at the neural origins of motivation for years. A complementary change of perspective is additionally provided by behavioral research, psychology or motivational analysis.
Maybe you already know one or the other model, for example the pyramid of needs according to Abraham Maslow or the two-factor theory according to Frederick Herzberg. However, I don’t want to get into basic research with you today, but maybe give you a “nudge” or two. Incidentally, this is also a trendy word from the “new work economy”. I would like to extend an invitation to you today or for the entire week to take up one or the other impulse and implement it for yourself.
Let’s start with the Goldilocks Rule, also called the Goldilocks Rule
The author Orville Gilbert Brim Jr. once said:
One of the most important sources of human happiness is working on tasks with an appropriate level of difficulty that is neither too hard nor too easy.
With this statement, he has already perfectly described the Goldilocks rule. The metaphor goes back to the fairy tale Goldilocks and the Three Bears by the British poet Robert Southey, popular in the English-speaking world. In the fairy tale, a little girl enters the house of three bears who are not at home at the moment. On a table are three bowls filled with breakfast porridge. The girl tries from the first bowl, but the porridge is too hot. The contents of the second bowl are too cold. The porridge in the third bowl, however, is just right. She eats it completely.
So the key to motivation is to find the right middle ground, i.e. a task that neither overloads nor underchallenges you.
The golden mean
You may just get to thinking about it yourself, because in fact we often move between the two extremes of being over or under challenged. This is best seen very well in the world of work (burnout vs. boreout). Ultimately, each person must fathom this middle ground for themselves. Every person feels differently and has different stress limits, so blanket tips would be rather counterproductive.
Nevertheless, I’ve brought you a few suggestions that you are free to choose if you find them feasible for you or if they are rather less suitable.
Practical suggestions for more motivation in everyday life
1. develop rituals
According to James Clear and his book Atomic Habits, rituals like making coffee, watering flowers, exercising, etc. give us security/steadiness in a volatile world. give us security/steadiness in a volatile world.
2. gratitude exercise
Brain Dump: “One Line a Day.” Write down 3 things that were positive for you today. This is how you create memories of positive events.
3. practice self-care
How about a date with yourself: Sprinkle your favorite activities throughout your days like colorful confetti. For example, pack your inliners in the car, so the trip is only one step away. Make the end of work or the break attractive, because motivation also has a lot to do with anticipation and we all know this from vacation planning.
Sports bag in the car, sweets out of reach, tidy desk, etc. What you want to establish is simplified, what you want to eliminate is made more difficult.
5. social media slots
Do not waste your time envying the lives of others. No strategy or exercise in the world can motivate you when you’re sitting at a desk with a camera and a ring light while half the world is supposedly on vacation with the sun shining in your face.
6. professional support
Use personal coaching, trainings, advanced trainings, language courses or similar. Even competitive athletes are not permanently motivated, so they receive additional mental training.
Help others and find your happiness
There is a term called Helpers’s High. In research, this describes a brain impulse that is activated when we help others. This feels just as good as if we were eating chocolate or having sex. Researchers at the Max Plack Institute have found in a study of aging that helping others has a physical and mental impact on our well-being and even prolongs our lives. Study participants were elderly people who regularly take care of their grandchildren.
If you have little time in your daily life, start small, e.g. picking up trash while walking, supporting neighbors.
If you go through the world attentively, you automatically notice where support is needed. You can also subscribe to motivational newsletters(Female Empowerment Newsletter of our online magazine) or listen to inspiring podcasts.
No matter what you choose, the most important thing is to get into action. Create a framework that helps you do that, and this goes out to all my female listeners above all: Get support! Ask people you trust to give you time, either by taking tasks off your hands or by spending time with you and actively listening to you.
Conclusion and many thanks
In the spirit of motivation, I hope I’ve been able to give you a few little boosts today. Feel very free to write me if you also have a tip or method to keep you motivated. Because ultimately we are all teachers and learners at the same time.
About the author
Kinga Bartczak berät, coacht und schreibt zu Female Empowerment, neuer Arbeitskultur, Organisationsentwicklung systemischen Coaching, und Personal Branding.
Zudem ist sie Geschäftsführerin der UnternehmerRebellen GmbH und Herausgeberin des FemalExperts Magazins.