Many of us have found ourselves in motivational slumps in our careers. The daily grind can quite simply grind down our own motivation - that critical force to achieve, develop, produce and keep moving forward. Sometimes we can’t take a holiday to recharge. So what can we do in our day-to-day routine to help spark the engine of our own motivation?

5 hacks on how to stay motivated at work.

1. get back to the basics.

When you’re swamped with tasks or busy putting out fires, take a step back to get back to the basics and recalibrate your focus. 

Revisiting your purpose is essential to recharging self-motivation. Ask yourself these questions: 

  • What defines success and achievement for you? 
  • Do you have a clear view of your milestones? 
  • How does this sense of purpose resonate with the goals you have set forward? 

If your motivation is stuck, perhaps there is misalignment in your purpose, your goals and your daily grind. 

It’s easy to veer off course, so if you are a visual person, create a vision board or strategy diagram to put close to your workspace so you remember the why, the what and the how of your personal and work goals work and personal goals.

2. tune into the things & people that inspire you. 

Keep good company. Often we expect our managers to be our mentors, our role model, and even to motivate us. This is not always the reality. Ensure you keep good company by making regular encounters with people who can make a positive impact on you. These people may or may not work within your team or your organisation, but can still inspire and encourage you in ways that help you think laterally and thrive in your job. 

Take the time - time to read an inspirational quote about for work, time to revisit your goals and objectives, time to plug into something that fires you up or stretches your mind (like maybe a song, an article like this or a video)! Keep little motivators around your work area - things that get that initial spark going!

At Randstad, we like to kick off our Monday morning’s with a ritual where we share a motivational quote or story with the entire business. If you’re interested in what motivates us, follow our LinkedIn page for weekly inspiration quotes! 

3. either run the day, or the day will run you. 

When tasks start stacking up,prioritise them with a to-do list. You might want to write the list out twice; first as a stream of consciousness and then organise them in order of importance. Free programmes such as Google Keep and Evernote are a great way to manage and keep track of your work priorities. If you’re old school and rather use pen on paper, you can categorise your tasks into the Eisenhower Matrix to better make decisions on what to focus on. These categories are 1) important & urgent 2) important not urgent 3) urgent, not important 4) not urgent, not important.


4. declutter your space to clear your brain. 

No one can concentrate for hours on end without a break. In fact, research shows the average human attention span is eight seconds – one second less than a goldfish.  Common estimates of the attention span of healthy adults range from 10 to 20 minutes; however, there is no empirical evidence for this estimate. To remain focused at work, take a moment to stand up, do a few stretches or walk outside for some fresh air. Regular short breaks from the screens are vital for productivity & creativity, and will re-energise you. 

A cluttered workspace and environment can be a symptom of a disorganised mind, whereas a clean workspace can sometimes help to create mental space so that you can focus on the task at hand. Test this assumption out by taking the opportunity to spring clean your workstation today.  

5. switch off the frequent distraction 

Emails, Instagram, Whatsapp, Facebook… these are all common & constant distractions. Research shows an average person spends more than two-and-a-half hours a day just responding to emails and nearly two hours on social media. When you are in the midst of an important challenge or trying to meet a tight deadline, switch off your inbox and notifications so you can focus. If you struggle with self-control, online software such as Freedom and Anti-Social can shut down your internet access or lock you out of social media for a set period of time.