We all have days where we wake up and just don’t feel like doing any of the work in front of us.When tasks both small and large have piled up into a daunting mountain of work but all you feel like doing is binge-watching TV on the couch all day.”
For some, caffeine or an energy drink is enough. But when that doesn’t work, Ken Daum of Inc. has some tips to help you stay motivated in The Best Way to be Productive When Your Energy is Gone
Studies show that music can improve your mood, increase concentration, and even inspire new ideas.
1. Start by doing something that you actually want to do.
Although you may not feel inspired to work, there are usually a few small, straightforward tasks that you can get out of the way first. Kevin Daum of Inc. recommends starting there.
“When I really feel sluggish, I take five minutes and write down the two tasks I have been most motivated about tackling. Then, I make a pact with myself to complete them both that day. Now here’s the trick. I start my day with one of those tasks agreeing that I don’t get to start the other one until I work through all the not-so-interesting work that I also have to complete.”
2. The Pomodoro Technique
Named after the tomato kitchen timer, the Pomodoro technique has been around for decades and has garnered fans across all types of industries. Once mastered, the method should help you keep track of time and even train you to estimate how many “pomodoros”, or 25-minute blocks of time, a project will take to complete.
The technique is simple: work for 25 minutes straight on a single project (no stopping!) and after the 25 minute pomodoro is up, take a five-minute break. In order to be effective, you must stop whatever you’re doing at the end of the 25-minute timer, even if you’re right in the middle of a sentence. During the five-minute break, do something completely different such as checking your social media feeds, going for a quick walk, or refueling. Once the five-minute break is up, start another 25-minute work sequence (a new pomodoro) over again.
3. Get Outside
According to Entrepreneur.com, sitting is the new smoking. Studies show that a desk-bound, car-commuting lifestyle can raise the risk of heart disease, obesity, and other disabilities. When you’ve been sitting in front of a computer for a few hours and inspiration doesn’t strike, sometimes the best thing you can do is take a break and get outside. Getting up out of your office to walk around the block can help get your mind out of a rut and inspire some creative thinking. Getting your body moving and breathing in some fresh air can do wonders to improve concentration.
4. Dance Break
When all else fails, take a dance break. Sometimes, all it takes is a break in your day-to-day routine to get your body moving and your blood flowing. Whether it’s gardening, hula-hooping, or busting some moves, grooving to the music can change your attitude and give you energy to tackle your next big project. Studies show that music can improve your mood, increase concentration, and even inspire new ideas. Not to mention, a good old-fashioned dance break just feels right! So the next time you’re in a rut, break out some headphones and get your groove on.