It’s hard. The down days, the struggles with moving ahead. Feeling like you’re always playing catch-up. The grind can sap the energy out of us. It can fill us with anxiety, stress, worry, procrastination — the list goes on.
Ask any successful person what their downfall is and sure enough, at the root of it is a lack of energy. No energy, no way you’re going to achieve what you want.
It’s the exact position I found myself in at this time a few years ago. Launching my entrepreneurial venture, yet lacking the direction I needed, I sputtered.
I became frustrated, cynical and even though I had some clients, everything seemed to look negative. It wasn’t about what I had, but about what I didn’t have.
I lacked the vitality and soul I know — when at my best — is the heartbeat of what makes my business successful today. Maybe you’re sitting there nodding your head, as you thumb through this article and think of the creeping distractions that can rob you of your energy.
We’re all one procrastination away from wasting more of our day, and fading into a less motivated and inspired funk. So how do we get that energy back?
The key to being productive is operating with positive energy and letting that sustain itself so that it becomes momentum. In their research on Psychological Momentum, Seppo E. Iso-Ahola and Charles O. Dotson write in the journal, Frontiers in Psychology:
“…Whatever tasks people undertake, perceptions of positive PM enhance their sense of success in goal pursuit. When they initially experience success, their self-confidence and competence grow, leading to heightened expectations, expanded mental and physical effort in task performance, increased perceptions of positive PM, and a greater likelihood of success.”
Momentum is what gets us going and provides the necessary energy to be more productive. Here are five ways that I’ve developed that will help you renew your mind to begin each day, get more done and be productive:
Spend 15 minutes in solitude every day
List the 5 most important things you need to accomplish this week. Sneak over to the shared workspace. Get outside for a walk. Or, just sit at your work station and pop on noise-canceling headphones.
Spend this time in reflection, speak positive affirmations over your life, and visualize yourself doing what you want to accomplish.
Think of the people you love the most. Dedicate this week’s work to these people
They’re the “Who” behind what you’re doing. I’ve realized what a tremendous blessing it is to have three beautiful, healthy children. I literally smile just looking at my boys.
They bring so much joy and love to my heart, there’s no better feeling in the world. Maybe you feel the same about the loved ones in your life. Do “it” for them.
Check off five tasks on your list that are easy wins to get the momentum going
This one is self-explanatory. Get some momentum going.
As I found in my research for my book, Emotional Intelligence for the Modern Leader, celebrating wins produces positive thought energy which leads to a greater likelihood to commit to action.
I bet there are things you’re doing well right now.
I bet there are things just waiting for you get done that you’ve been putting off. Put together the five wins you want to get under your belt, and focus on those five things today.
Ask a co-worker or friend out to lunch this week
Think of someone you really want to learn from, and take the time to understand who they are, and what motivates them, and ask how you can help them.
Then, get into a regular habit of doing this. If you’re unable to do it in-person, then get on a video chat. Make a connection! Lead with empathy. This will get you on an energized track to thriving.
Reflect on all the accomplishments you’ve had so far
Be genuinely proud of what you’ve done- personally and professionally. Chances are, you’ve come a long way.
There’s a direct correlation between the way we feel energy-wise and the beliefs we hold about ourselves. Those beliefs, when positive and motivated, can lead to incredible outcomes. When negative, though, they can turn a promising day into a disaster very quickly.
Energy, on its own, can come and go. But we can do a lot to bring positive energy into our lives to rejuvenate our spirit.
I’ve started to think about how much I’ve accomplished this year. That’s not always easy for me — my mindset is often in overdrive in “Next” mode, which can be both good and bad.
I can really struggle with my energy levels when I don’t stop to realize how many good things I’ve done. Not to dwell in that place for too long, but to reflect on it in a winning, confidence-building way.
Do you know the feeling?
Concluding thoughts and looking ahead
Reflect on all the accomplishments you’ve had so far. Meditate on that thought. Begin the renewal of your mind to realize momentum can serve as the accelerator to living the life you want.
Be genuinely proud of what you’ve done- personally and professionally. I bet you’ll see your energy levels skyrocket as you continue to win and make your big plans for 2020.
Chances are, you’ve come a long way. Take a moment, just for you, to soak it in. Re-energize and concentrate your energy on what’s most important to you.
Check out more of my work: http://chrisdconnors.com and see the productivity tips I share with more than 20,000 email subscribers.
This article first appeared on Medium.