It’s hard being productive when you aren’t feeling 100%. Whether it’s from depression, heartbreak, or just a difficult mental health day, trying to stay motivated can be incredibly difficult. Sometimes it’s just not possible to mark tasks off your to-do list when your brain won’t cooperate.
Having those yucky mental health moments can be really hard. Plus, that little ticking clock in your mind doesn’t help take any of that pressure off of those deadlines. Luckily there are a few ways you can stay motivated when you’re feeling low.
Tips on staying motivated…
You’re sad because you can’t get things done, but you can’t get things done because you are sad. It’s a vicious cycle. Breaking this cycle begins with the smallest types of accomplishments and a whole lot of grace for yourself.
On those days when you feel mentally drained and emotionally spent, start with the small things. Get out of bed, take a shower, and get dressed. Those are three things you just marked off of your to-do list–congratulations!
Complete each task, one at a time, starting from the smallest ones to the more complicated ones. Every little task that you complete, no matter how small, helps you feel more accomplished. This accomplished feeling will be what helps pull you out of this cycle and into feeling like yourself again.
Give yourself grace.
One of the biggest things you can do for yourself during this time is accept your situation. Yeah, it stinks to not have energy for productivity. However, this is how you feel and now it’s time to work on helping your brain recover and continue on.
You may feel upset that you can’t complete the big things on your to-do list right away, but give yourself grace. Shaming yourself will only make it worse, so it’s important to extend understanding to yourself.
Some days are just hard for your mind. Understanding this allows you to figure out how to help your mind rather than work against it.
Know when to take a break.
Avoiding taking a break leads to burnout. Knowing when, what, and how your brain needs rest is the best thing you can do for your mental health. Have some ideas on hand to boost mental rest whether it’s a nap, talking to a friend, or something artistic.
Grounding is anything you do that intentionally self-soothes and brings you back to a peaceful mindset. This could look like going on a walk or making yourself some tea when you start to feel overwhelmed.
Finding ways to ground yourself lets you come back to believing you can do hard things with a clear mind. Practicing this will keep your mental motivation strong as you work.
Ask for help.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Those who love you will also love to help you with what you are struggling with. If you can delegate a few tasks to someone else for your mental wellbeing, do it.
Focus on positivity.
It can be hard to be positive when you can’t feel any of those good emotions. However, your thoughts, words, and things you surround yourself with feed into your subconscious worldview. Surround yourself with good things, throw out any negative thoughts, and understand that your words have power over your brain.
You can do hard things!
It can feel impossible to stay motivated when you’re feeling low. However, you are capable of doing hard things. It just takes knowing yourself, acknowledging your situation, and taking care of yourself in your own timing. Work with yourself, not against yourself and you’ll see how strong you really are, even on difficult days.