Have you ever felt like you’ve lost your funk? Yeah, me too.
Millennials are regulars on the imposter syndrome and perfectionism train. Frequently fighting a constant need to feel and do your best can debilitate your motivation and stunt creativity, sending that mojo of yours on its merry way. So how do I get it back, I hear you ask? Well, I’m here to talk about some simple solutions that are both short and long-term options that you can get started on today.
COMMUNICATION & PROGRESS
I love talking to people, bouncing ideas around and solving problems. I always have a more productive day at work if it starts with a project meeting and it shocks me how unmotivated I feel if that doesn’t happen. An investigation into creative productivity in the workplace highlighted the idea of progress boosted energy – “Of all the things that can boost emotions, motivation, and perceptions during a workday, the single most important is making progress in meaningful work. And the more frequently people experience that sense of progress, the more likely they are to be creatively productive in the long run”.
Whether that progress is in the form of solving daily tasks or ticking that massive deadline off your to-do list, the more you feel productive, the more you actually are.
“TIDY ROOM, TIDY MIND”
Thanks for this one, mum. Since first hearing this – picture 12-year-old me struggling to pen my first hefty word-count essay on a make-shift desk of clothes, snacks and teacups – it continues to shock me how effective a good workspace is for your motivation. Harvard University carried out an experiment on how clutter can affect your productivity, the results showed that the people who worked on a tidy desk could work 7.5 minutes longer than those in a messy workspace. A clean area promotes focus and lessens stress. So get that hoover out, girls and boys.
Sounds simple, but it works.
Your brain relies on hydration, with studies finding not drinking enough water can affect your energy and brain function. If I’m in a slump, I’ll force myself to down a pint of water and some fresh OJ – orange juice is high in Vitamin C, meaning it’s a quick-fire shot of energy to get you back in the saddle.
Go for a walk. Getting oxygen into the body increases serotonin levels, which makes you feel more optimistic and motivated as well as improving concentration levels.
There is nothing worse than sitting at a blank computer screen for hours thinking “I cannot do this”. It’s deflating and a prime catalyst for saying cya later to your mojo. If that hasn’t persuaded you, a research paper on psychology and colour found that green promotes creativity by generating the idea of growth. Take yourself out of that toxic mind frame, get some fresh air and look at the wind in the trees.
WHAT INSPIRES YOU?
Have you got an underlying passion that you can turn into a project? In 2019 a study showed 60% of young people had a side hustle, with 41% of those using it to scratch their creative itch. I know several people, myself included, that have created a second Instagram for hobbies and extra interests like reviewing books, conscious fashion and cooking. After a stint on furlough and feeling my sparkle had well and truly left the building, I was in drastic need of something new. Another study by Harvard Business Review found people with side gigs are more empowered, as well as more positive toward their full-time job which in hand, improved their career performance. Since starting mine, I have more variety in my week, I learn new things and meet new people – which I don’t know about you, but that really inspires me.
Think about what makes you tick. For now, it can be a hobby, but who knows someday it could turn into your main hustle. That’s enough to get you feeling motivated and creative.
Words by Joanna Standley