From boredom to boardroom - How to motivate yourself at work

From boredom to boardroom - How to motivate yourself at work




310 week ago — 9 min read

Summary: Legendary footballer Pele once said, "Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do." To be productive at work, it is important to keep boredom and inertia at bay and to be filled with passion and determination. Read on to find out some wonderful tips to stay motivated at work.


Everybody works. Whether you are a stay at home parent or an employee in a company. Some people love their jobs. Others hate it. Some find inspiration to motivate themselves. Some look at the big picture.


No matter what, there will be times where work gets dull, dreary or just too difficult to comprehend. So how does one motivate themselves to push through and look at their work in a more positive light?


Here are some tips that may help motivate you at work:

Break your work into bite sized pieces

Everybody cannot do everything at once. If you have a large and complicated task to complete, try to compartmentalise into bite sized pieces. Tackle one at a time. The feeling of checking off each task that has been completed will be a satisfying reward.


Go for a walk

I always found this the most helpful. I am the sort of person who prefers to be more active than sit at a desk for long periods of time. If the work is getting to you and you need a break, then take a walk. Perhaps a short distance to the water fountain. Or how about the canteen or break room? Take a walk inside your building or a short stroll outside for some fresh air. This simple exercise will clear up your mind and you will get back to work with more vigor.


Get some sun

An extension to the point above, going out and getting some exposure to the sun helps you bounce back happy from a dreary work day. Studies have shown that even a short exposure to some Vitamin D helps elevate mood, energy and vitality.  Vitamin D is also known to possibly treat depression and sadness. So as the children’s song goes – Mr.Sun, Sun, Mr.Golden Sun.., please shine down on me!


Call your friend, spouse or significant other to say hello

A simple, yet easy way to break away from something that is completely opposite to the work you are currently doing. Calling a loved one just to say hello is a refreshing break from routine. Of course, I don’t need to point out that it shouldn’t affect your work, lest you get a stern eye from your bosses.


Keep pace with the hardworking people 

It’s simple. If you want to feel motivated at work, surround yourself with people who are motivated themselves. Hardworking, dedicated and happy people makes the workplace enjoyable. Being in their vicinity will soon rub off on you.


Do some basic stretches 

Got a crick in the neck after sitting for long periods of time? Some basic stretches right at your desk can help relive tension and stress. There are several tips online that you can try. Better still, find an empty meeting room and do some light yoga for a few minutes. You will feel more energized to get back to work!


Upgrade your workstation / Ergonomics

Most offices today try to implement good ergonomic practices. Workplaces, computer systems and products that employees use should be up to standards and in working conditions. If you are like me who doesn’t like to sit at a desk for long periods of time but have a desk job – opt for a standing workstation. Or how about a yoga ball instead of a chair? You can check with upper management about procuring these for the office or get them yourself.


Get coffee… Or tea…

Need a boost? Get some caffeine. Coffee or tea consumption has the potential to improve moods, increase heart rate and energy levels. Not a coffee or tea drinker? Then try chewing gum.


Go to the breakroom for a chat

A friendly chat to catch up on day’s events with coworkers is a good way to take a break from an uninteresting work day. It helps to know what others are currently working on. Perhaps you can give some insights and may also learn a thing or two in return.

Feedback helps

Some days, low motivation comes from not being able to finish a task. Either the task is too hard, too tedious or there are many variables to take into account. Either way, discussing with a coworker, team member or your manager may help sort this issue and get back to work with new ideas and more motivation to complete the task.


Listen to some music

Music is known to have commanding power over one’s mind. Music has the ability to sync with your heartbeat and nervous system. Fast, upbeat music can have you tapping and increases breathing. Slow, soothing music can calm you down. What better motivation do you need? Just pop in those earbuds and listen to some tunes to get in you in the mood.

Play a game on your phone

Now this may seem like I am telling you to shirk out of work. But its not! A quick 5-minute distraction from a routine day job may help boost motivation. Earlier my poison of choice was Candy Crush.  The feeling of completing a level successfully was extremely satisfying. Now, back to work!


Watch an inspirational speech from someone famous or successful

Somedays we need to count our blessings and look at the broader picture. Bored at work and need motivation? At least you have a job. There are people who struggle years to find the perfect job. Watching some inspirational videos of speeches may help alleviate some of those low-down feelings. TED Talks are highly recommended. I had recently read 'Lean In' by Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook. As a woman in the workplace, watching her interviews, speeches and her TED talk online, was truly an inspiration. Can’t zero in on someone inspirational? Watch some cat videos instead for a good laugh.


Drop the work and circle back later

Sometimes you reach a point when you have tried every method to complete something but not motivated enough to finish it.  I have found that the best way is to drop it for the time being, pick up something else and come back to it later. That little lapse in absence may bring back better ideas and possibly a new outlook on how to resolve it.


Face your excuses

Alright so you have tried many options to boost your motivation ratings. Nothing seems to work. Now it’s time to face your excuses. What is the root of the problem? Bad boss? Lazy coworkers? Non-communicative office atmosphere? Low salary compensation?

List down your thoughts and concerns and set up a meeting with your managers or supervisors. Let them know your problems and come to a solution. If all else fails and you still feel demotivated, then think about changing jobs. You would be doing them and yourself a favour.


In conclusion, there can be several entities that translate to low motivation at work. In my opinion, money seems to be the most common motivator. Do you want in to be in a job that pays well, but you hate it - or a job that pays low compensation, but you love it?  Work out your priorities. Communicate them to friends, family and coworkers. There is always a solution to everything.


As a disclaimer, I would like to point out that if you find yourself having to do each of the above tips many times a week because of low motivation, you may need to reflect on your job priorities. The ideas I have mentioned here are to be used with discretion based on your current working standards, office culture and workplace ethic practices.

Steve Jobs once quoted, “The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle”

Hope these ideas help you through tough times at work.

Till next time. 


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Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views, official policy or position of GlobalLinker.  

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