We've all been there—days, or even weeks, where we've lost "it." It = motivation, inspiration, passion, etc.
Real Talk: no matter if you're in your dream job or not, you will have seasons where you've lost motivation. When you’re in a slump, you don’t produce your best work and may become disengaged from the tasks that used to excite you. It doesn't necessarily mean it's time to look for another job. Maybe it does, but that's a separate post.
Here are seven of my own personal tactics to pull myself out of the rut and re-energize my passion:
Find an inspirational, work-related, podcast or book. I generally pick an area I need motivation in i.e. Leadership, Marketing, Customer Success, etc. Just one sentence of the book can spark a new idea.
2. Connect with a colleague
Do something fun with a colleague; culture creates appreciation.
3. Just Do It
Instead of waiting around, willing myself to feel motivated, I'll try to just go ahead and start doing the work I know I need to do. I dive into the project and trust that the focus will be what I need.
I take some time to think about what got me into this rut in the first place. Trying to pinpoint when I first started feeling "off," and consider what may have triggered the change. Identifying things like: feeling unappreciated, not having leadership buy-in, etc. helps me to identify the why. Then I usually talk it through with a trusted mentor.
I'm a goal-oriented, fast-paced, worker. I like setting goals and working towards them. If I'm feeling particularly "rutty" I know I've either accomplished my goals OR am not excited about them. So, I will find some time to "dream" about what I would like to accomplish — no obstacles in my path. Then write out how I could achieve them. Note: Office Hours, The Matrix/Communication funnel, even some of my most “liked” blog posts all came from brainstorming sessions.
6. Being Grateful
Nine times out of 10 when I'm in a rut, it's because I'm thinking of all the things wrong with my job/company etc. So, I keep a running list of all the things I'm thankful for. It's amazing when I sit and talk with friends who hate their job how the list of what I'm thankful for grows.
7. Get Some Training
Learning something new usually sparks creativity. Find a trailhead trail to complete, an online course, or a nearby conference to go to.
No matter what the cause of your rut, you are capable of rising above it. Take the time you need to evaluate why you found yourself in the situation to begin with, use your goals to rekindle motivation, train yourself to focus, and identify the decision you’ve been avoiding so you can act.