When I start thinking about creative projects, my to do list, or anything that gets my brain going, I easily get overwhelm on where to start. There are always a million things to do and hundreds of places to start. Usually, there is another distracting task, like a sink of dirty dishes or vacuuming that needs to be done, that seems to get in the way of the goal or project that I’m working on. Other distractions, like social media, also pop up and try to get in the way. It’s really easy for me to get overwhelmed and lose motivation. When this happens, I usually read a book or watch a show on Netflix and lose motivation all together.
Today, I’m going to tell you my number 1 tip for gaining motivation and maintaining it. (Psst. It’s really easy!) When I lose motivation, it’s usually because I have too much on my plate and too much on my mind. I can’t focus and I can’t find a starting place. To gain focus, clarity, and motivation, I ask myself one simple question:
“What is one thing I can do right now to make an impact on ____ ?”
What’s one thing I can do right now to make my blog better? What’s one thing I can do to make the house chores easier? What can I do to get closer to my goal of owning my own business? What can I do right now to make an impact on my fitness?
For me, this question can help me think logically about the ONE next step. I don’t let myself think past that. What is ONE thing, not what is the first thing followed by a list of the follow steps. Sometimes the answers might automatically include a next step, like I’ll tidying up the room first will make vacuuming easier. But I don’t let myself think, I’ll start with tidying up and then move to vacuuming, after vacuuming I’ll do the dishes. Nope. One thing.
Once I finish that one thing. I’ll ask myself “now what’s ONE MORE thing I can do?” Again, not a list of this next steps. ONE more thing. Or something I’ll just finish that first thing and that’s enough. It depends on the day and on the project.
Basically, this question helps me prevent burn out. I don’t get buried in to do list items or figuring out multiple steps before starting the work. I love making to do lists. And I usually make to do lists for each project and goal and dream. As a result, I end up with 10 different to do lists and no clue on where to start first. For me, motivation comes easily. It’s maintaining it and preventing burn out. This one little practice helps me identify the immediate next step and let’s me get closer to my goals. If there is a day that I don’t feel motivated and I just want to binge shows on Netflix, this questions gives me a small easy thing that I can do. I usually answer it with something very small. That small goal helps get me in the mindset for completing more and more goals. Sometimes a little boost is all it takes.
I hope this question is helpful for you. I find myself thinking about it almost daily. It helps when I just want to sit on the couch for hours and it also helps when I’ve had a coffee and I feel like I’m bouncing off the walls.
How would you answer this question today? Is there a goal you’ve been waiting to work on? Or house cleaning you know needs to be done? Let me know in the comments what your ONE THING for the day is! Also, I’d love to hear your thoughts on motivation. Does it come easy for you? Or what do you think some of your roadblocks are? Let me know in the comments! xo. Laura