The World doesn't stop when you are tired
The answer is that it doesn’t.
This article is not made to promote workaholism. It is about doing what matters and what is important to you.
If you are tired and not feeling like doing work, that doesn’t mean that the world should suddenly stop and is waiting for you to feel better.
Feeling tired doesn’t mean that you should never give yourself time off. It means that you need to understand why and when to give yourself rest.
After great accomplishment — sure. After a productive day — Heck yea.
But after a day of watching Netflix, you feel tired — this is a wake-up call.
Ask yourself. Why?
If you are feeling under the weather or don’t have the spark or the motivation, it doesn’t mean that you are a failure. There is a reason for this.
You need to stop and ask yourself:
Why am I feeling like this? What did I do today, yesterday, this week or this month that could off caused this?
Nothing happens for no reason in the world; everything has a cause and effect. The most important part of taking control of your life and your emotions are identifying both the cause and result for the most important things.
Let’s take as an example if you are being tired what can that be due to.
Is it because an unhealthy work/life schedule you have been living?
Is it because of unhealthy and high carbs foods you have been eating?
Is it because you skipped gym day five times in a row now?
Is it because you over dragged yesterday?
Is it because you work on urgencies of life and not on what is essential?
There can be multiple reasons for all of the effects and problems you are experiencing.
The way to improve in life is it make sure that you know what the problems are and what you can do about them.
Focusing on what is Important.
Above I linked to James Clear’s article covering what the most common reason people are not able to fulfil their dreams is. Humans are not made to prioritise critical longterm goals naturally. We focus on what is right in front of us.
This, of course, guarantees unhappiness:
A cookie today might cause diabetes in 2 years.
The unhealthy relationship today will give us suffering in the future.
Hacks on killing your unproductive slump.
If you are feeling down and don’t feel motivated to work, there are some tricks to waste a minimal amount of time and energy.
Usually, if you go into a slump, it can be SUPER HARD to come back to being productive again.
Here are the tricks:
Write a day off.
If you are feeling that you don’t feel like doing anything else today(of course have made your daily habits), you can write the rest of the day off. From that moment every second in this day will be free and you can do the most unproductive and lazy thing you want. Play games, go out, watch a movie or anything else. The day is done.
What is important is that tomorrow you will take up and it will be a typical day, and you will be refreshed as you got some quality rest time yesterday. You won’t feel that your productive streak has ended and you can do unproductive things today. 2. 5-minute rule.
If you are feeling unmotivated and too lazy to do the work that you need to. Then you've got to use the 5-minute rule.
5-minute rule states that you need to start the first thing that is in your TODO tracker right now. Only do it for 5 minutes.
What ends up happening that after you have done 5 minutes, you will keep going. 5 minutes will become 10 minutes and then an hour.
Read a page, becomes read 10 pages and later read a chapter.
Write an introduction, becomes, write a body and later finish an article.
Multiple studies have shown that you get motivation WHILE doing work, not before. 3. Motivate yourself.
The last resort after the day off and the 5-minute rule is to super motivate yourself.
This is highly different from person to person. The general advice is to refresh your mind and put into it success stories.
What worked for me is as follows: Stop whatever you are doing and go for a run or do any sport for at least 1 hour. Refresh your thinking after that put the best YouTube videos or TedTalks that you KNOW will motivate you. Read an article of your favourite idol in the sphere where you are working in. Read a case study from leaders of the industry. See how much and which high quality work others are doing. Don’t start working yourself.
Review your habits and your schedule.
There is a reason you are here. The best thing you can do after you battled yourself from binge-watching Netflix is to review how you got there. Open your habit journal, your TODO app or a calendar and see what you did that made you so exhausted. That will make sure that you change the way you stack your habits and your behaviours so that you won’t get to the same feeling doing the same, destructive things.
Create, Not Consume.
The most uplifting and motivational thing is to create something. You might know the feeling. You have finally finished work. It doesn't matter what it is, and you feel fantastic.
Sometimes when you created something, you can feel unhappy about the result. The game breaker here is that you did the process and learned something from it.
The incredible thing is that the work that you are not sure about is the work that most of the time will get the best results. You publish it, and if even a single person reads it, you have already made someone's life better. Isn’t that amazing?
If you receive a "thank you" from someone for doing a work that you do or just a general thumbs-up 👍, of course, that is going to motivate you.
On the other hand, if you have been doing nothing but consuming, then that can be depressed, especially if it's low-quality content from social media.
There have been multiple studies talking about highlight reel of others affecting our self-worth and how, in the long term, it leads to depression. Don’t let other people work affect your own life and your motivation.
Stop filing pauses of your life with low-quality dopamine hits. Get them by feeling proud, excited and happy for what you personally have done. The work will compound into more motivation, and better work and in the end will cause you to become the best professional in what you do.
The cause of your professionalism? Repetition of DOING.
Monitor your time
What time do you spend working and what time you spend procrastinating?
When are you coming up with brilliant ideas but in the middle of something else?
Are you feeling particularly drawn to Netflix and chill at some part of the day?
Write all of this triggers down. Every time something like this happens, make sure to write it down and explore what exactly is going on.
I have formulated the following schedule for me, and it might work for you as well. You can use it as a template.
I work better in the morning and the first half of the day than after work(after 6 pm). Also, I don't check my phone before I finished my morning pages.
4:00 - Wake up. 4:00 - 4:25 brush teeth, take a shower 4:25 - 5:25 morning pages, affirmations and habit tracker 5:30 - 6:20 writing article 6:25 - 7:00 coding on my projects or working on YouTube videos 7:00 - 16:00 normal work 16:00 - 17:00 either food or wind down 17:00 - 18:00 programming on side projects 18:00 - 19:00 audiobook or YouTube videos (this is the hardest time not to watch Netflix) 19:00 go to bed with either a book or audiobook 20:00 should be asleep by then
Keep in mind that this is a perfect day with no destructions and stable environment.
Sometimes my mornings have sports in them, and so everything gets pushed.
Sometimes my everyday work is less busy, and so I have time to write a blog article or hack away.
Looking back at this schedule, I somehow do a lot of other work that I am not sure where I fit them in, but anyways things are always done!
Starting is the most challenging part
If you have started, you already halfway there. The other half is sticking to what you started.
If you do the same thing for one year, you will be bored to repeat it the same way. You will upgrade it, innovate and improve. There is no other way.
But if you stop, you kill any possible progress.
In my eyes, it is better to do one thing for one year the same way, then doing nothing for the whole year and talking about starting.
The biggest take from all of this:
Start now. Get perfect Later