“Where’s my motivation?” It’s there, it just needs a guiding light

I don’t know about you guys, but lockdown is starting to become slightly tedious. But, I’ve somehow managed to get things done and keep the motivation to do so. If you’re struggling to find a way to be productive, I’m here to share how I’m keeping busy when all the days are blurring into one.

A few posts ago I wrote about how to stay motivated, sharing some ideas on things to do while we’re all stuck indoors. But even then, I know that all the things on that list will seem out of reach, especially when you’re feeling too low to even comprehend doing anything.

I’ve said this before, but I feel it’s important to reiterate, if you are feeling low, it is completely okay. This is a difficult and odd time, and being stuck in the same environment all day can be a drain on your energy and make your brain feel absolutely sapped. It doesn’t help when the weather is miserable too. I’ve definitely been feeling it over the last few days with the rain in England, and I’ve been told the weather hasn’t been great in Victoria either.

So, how have I been staying motivated? Honestly, I’m baffled that I’ve managed to be productive for the last six weeks of lockdown, but thinking back on it, I’ve barely noticed that’s how long it’s been.

Rather than thinking of the lockdown as a hindrance, I’ve viewed it as an opportunity to focus on uni work, and things I’ve wanted to do at home for years but haven’t had the chance to do. Keeping up with uni work is definitely easier when it’s the only thing I have to do, despite the time difference.

To make sure I’m up-to-date with all my assignments and reading, I made a checklist on Canva of all my assignments, their due dates and the readings for each of my courses. Every time I complete something, I tick it off. Assigning myself tasks to complete for uni every day has made the weeks fly by, and given me some kind of schedule, which I think is what we’re all missing a little bit at the moment: routine.

I’ve come to realise that routine is something that’s super important for getting me through period of dragged-out time. This is the first time since secondary school I’ve used a daily planner and timetable, but it’s really helped!

I’ve also made sure to vary my tasks and share out time. I’ll take a day or two off to just chill, or sort something out in my room. Most days, when the weather permits, I’ll go for my one government-sanctioned walk for the day, to get some fresh air and clear my head. If the weather is still awful, just opening your window to let some air in can help too.

My main source of motivation? We have time for once. We don’t often get the chance just to sit down and take a breath. So for once, I’m not rushing anything. Until this pandemic is officially over, you don’t need to hurry. Didn’t clean something? Do it tomorrow! Long project? There are weeks of time! Just don’t panic, don’t rush, don’t hurry. Take a deep breath, pace yourself.

Essentially, my advice is this: create a routine, but share the abundance of time you have evenly. You don’t need to do something all the time every day, just try to set yourself a few things to achieve by the end of each week, whether that’s Friday or Sunday for you.

There are days when I just can’t be bothered to do anything, but I take it as a sign that my body just needs a moment to stop and recharge. Don’t force yourself to do something if you don’t feel like it!

I hope everyone is continuing to stay safe and well! This will be over soon, we will get through this!