Chapter 2

Why Do I Lack Motivation?

To kick off this process of learning, you have to reflect inward. Ask yourself, “What is preventing my motivation?” Often, it is because we enter with a negative or self-doubting mindset. When you commit yourself to work through the layers of self-doubt, you’ll expose what’s truly triggering your lack of motivation.



Factors That Contribute to Being Unmotivated


There are a handful of lack of motivation causes, such as being lazy, procrastinating and even your mental health.


While laziness and procrastination are the common faults of motivation, it is important to discuss how mental illnesses can affect your feelings of motivation and inspiration. In fact, one of the top symptoms of depression is a lack of motivation or no feelings of desire.


Depression can wear you down and make you feel exhausted and fatigued, no matter how much energy you’ve exerted in your day. You may also be spreading yourself too thin, being there for your co-workers, family and friends and leaving little to no time, effort or care for yourself.


If you feel like your lack of motivation is stemming from depression or anxiety, talk with your doctor or therapist right away. They will work with you to find new approaches to rediscovering motivation in your life that benefit your lifestyle and personal limits.


How Can I Stop Being Lazy?


One easy way to stop being lazy is to get up and move! Moving around instead of sitting and standing all day can give you bursts of energy and make you feel less sluggish while at work.


Many people tend to think the opposite of being lazy is an active lifestyle where you commit to working out every day. This is a tricky mindset to have, and one you should avoid. Just because you’re not hitting the gym daily doesn’t mean you’re lazy.


Instead, take your movement and physical activity in steps. If you’re stuck at home, use those commercial breaks on TV as an opportunity to walk around the house. Or, challenge yourself not to skip the intro or credits to your favorite show on Netflix, so you can take the opportunity to run up and down your stairs before the show begins.


You might feel like a desk or office job is making you lazier and giving you a lack of motivation at work — but it doesn’t have to! When you finish an assignment, get up and refill your water bottle or pour another cup of coffee. Take a walk around the block during your lunch break. Giving yourself these moments for spurts of energy can counteract your feeling of lack of motivation at work.


How Do I Stop Procrastinating Right Now?


If you need to snap yourself out of it and stop procrastinating, give yourself a five-minute break. This extra time to yourself might sound counterproductive, but when you realize you haven’t been productive, a break is a guilt-free way to let your mind wander. Scheduling time for a midday break will motivate you to get work done before and after that brief interlude.


Let’s say you’re at work and you realize you’ve been mindlessly reading and sorting through emails for nearly 30 minutes. That’s a solid chunk of time you could have been working, and you probably start mentally beating yourself up when you think about it.


To kick yourself out of that cycle, you need to step away for a mental restart. Take five minutes to get some water, grab a snack from the kitchen and refresh your Twitter feed. Then, when you get back to your desk, set a timer for 30 minutes and get to work.


When that half-hour is up, it’s your choice whether you need another mental break, or if you can devote another segment of time to diligent work. The point here is to not let your procrastination over a task or assignment consume you and cause a lack of motivation.


Even if your procrastination is occurring at home — preparing dinner, folding laundry, decorating for the holidays — you can use this time trick to your advantage. Don’t tell yourself you’ll start doing something after you finish the next episode of whatever you’re watching on Netflix. Take five minutes to grab a snack or something to drink and then get it done.


(Plus, you can usually do all the tasks you’re procrastinating on at home while watching your show in the background! Life hack!)



A lack of motivation causes laziness and procrastination to amplify, sometimes reaching uncontrollable levels. Understanding the whys and wheres of your lack of motivation can put you a step ahead in gaining the balance and confidence you need to take action.


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