articles / Productivity/ How to persevere when you feel TOTALLY unmotivated

How to persevere when you feel TOTALLY unmotivated

feel totally unmotivated

Abbie Pullman
Photo by Carolina Heza on Unsplash


Stuck in a rut? Going around in circles on the same bit of work and achieving very little? You need help.

My ex-colleagues will tell you that I’ve ALWAYS had the motivation to put in long hours. Some would probably call me ‘driven’ (though I hate that… who or what, exactly, is driving me? And where are we going?!).

Working hard feels great for me — that’s why I decided to become a freelancer. And I can stay focused for really long stretches. Sometimes.

But we all experience that ‘meh’ feeling that makes us drag our feet and stay in the shower just a FEW minutes longer to put off starting work…

But I’m working for myself now, I should be constantly energized and raring to go: ‘when you’re doing what you love you never work a day in your life’, right..?

Well, I’m not convinced the world really works like that for 99.99999% of us. Plus, when you’re in start-up mode or freelancing, there aren’t many (if any!) people around to give you a kick and hold you accountable.

Right now, I’m doing what I really love: I’m challenged, I’m writing, I’m working on weird and wonderful marketing projects, I’m learning about a vast array of topics, and I have loads of variety. And yet some days I feel totally unmotivated.

No, that’s a lie — I am motivated, I’m just motivated to stay in bed or watch box-sets. We’re ALL motivated by something all the time, we just have to make sure it’s the right focus.

‘Motivated’ doesn’t mean being full of smiles, or whistling while you work, or constantly feeling just SO excited and enthusiastic about how SIMPLY MARVELLOUS everything is… Very few people in the world are like that all the time and, frankly, they give the rest of us a headache.

Motivation means muttering in frustration under your breath while you’re working because you can’t stay focused, then putting in the extra hours because there’s something better just over the horizon.

Motivation means realizing that you’ve run out of steam, gritting your teeth and carrying on.

So, how do we get motivated, even when you feel totally unmotivated?