A lack of motivation can often seem to be caused by laziness or procrastination at first glance, but looks can often be deceiving! If you’re struggling to stay motivated about working on your goals or any other endeavor, a little introspection can be just the thing you need to provide clarity and insight about what’s really happening beneath the surface.
Grab a sheet of paper and a pen, and answer the questions below:
1. Am I afraid of failing?
Fear of failure is an all-too-common reason why people lose motivation. If this is one of the reasons you’re holding back, you’ll likely be able to come up with clear ideas why you feel so afraid. For example, you may write, “I’m afraid of embarrassing myself in front of my family and friends,” or “I’m afraid I’ll be really disappointed in myself if I don’t make this happen.” Whatever comes to mind, write it down and then really think about whether it would be so terrible to experience – or if it would be much worse to not try at all.
2. Do I really believe in my own ability to persevere until I make it?
Likewise, you may be feeling uncertain about your ability to overcome obstacles and challenges, which is slightly different than a fear of failure. For example, you may have a certain measure of confidence in your skills and abilities but doubt that you have the determination and fortitude to achieve the full outcome you desire.
3. Have I grown bored with the goals that once meant so much to me?
This is an excellent question to ask because sometimes you’re not aware that your priorities and preferences have changed, and you can gain a lot of clarity by understanding what you REALLY want. If you do find that you’ve lost interest in your initial goals, you simply need to come up with some new and exciting goals that will spark your eagerness to move forward again.
4. Am I afraid of what it might mean if I succeed?
Another common fear is the fear of success. A fear of success is more about fearing the baggage that often comes along with success. You may feel nervous about taking on extra responsibility, feel overwhelmed by the increased attention your success would bring, or you might even be worried that you’ll never be able to “top” this level of success in the future. The only way to work through these fears is to discredit them. When you break them down and really examine them, you usually find that they’re groundless or irrational, which helps you to move past them.
5. What would make me feel more motivated about this goal or activity?
Sometimes you can’t find any clear reason for feeling unmotivated, but asking this question can often help you feel more in control of your own willingness to take action. Not only do you realize that you’re not powerless against a lack of motivation, you may come up with creative ideas that could inspire your sense of enthusiasm again.