As the Bravely Original blog continues to grow and we explore topics all across the creative space, I’ve noticed a particular theme keeps popping up. So many things I choose to cover here somehow link back to our fundamental human need for rest. Isn’t that interesting? I’ve thought about it a lot over the past few months and I truly think it’s because taking breaks is such an important piece of the puzzle when it comes to feeling personal fulfillment and professional satisfaction. It came up again during last week’s post and as I sat down to write this one, it got me thinking: Let’s make it a point to take the time to refuel ourselves over the weekend.
Today we’re going to start talking about another important step in regaining motivation and that is giving yourself credit. Giving credit where it’s due is an essential part of any healthy creative lifestyle. We’ve talked in previous posts about the Kaizen Muse principle of small steps and how they build momentum. Taking the time to look at all the amazing things you’ve accomplished really aids your brain in that same push forward. It’s not something most of us do nearly as often as we should, but if you find yourself in a rut, I can’t recommend it enough. Take some time to fill out your “credit report.” This was another really great technique I learned from becoming a certified Kaizen Muse creativity coach. Pull out a sheet of paper or open your notes app and write down three (or more!) things that you’ve accomplished today. They can be big or small, easy or hard. Anything counts. Your body and mind have gotten you through so much in life and in work. Be proud of what you accomplish! (You can find a copy of my credit report in my highlights on IG under “Templates”.)
Once you’ve rested and dedicated time to giving yourself the credit you deserve, I propose you undertake one of my favorite challenges… a mindset shift! This is where we try looking at our lives in a different way. Here’s an example of a really useful mindset shift: Something goes wrong and causes you to miss that really important meeting. Instead of seeing it as a terrible day and beating yourself up about why you couldn’t get there, try choosing to see it as a sign that you weren’t supposed to be. Easier said than done, of course, but it’s something to think about. It can be frustrating to hear, especially when you’re in the thick of it, but everything really does happen for a reason. Sometimes we find out why right away and other times it takes longer to understand why things happened the way they did. But when you’re able to turn things around and see the good in situations, you’ll be able to live and create more freely. This mindset shifting can be tough (I did call it a challenge, after all), but the more you practice, the better you become at reframing your reality into a more positive light. When motivation is running thin, it’s a helpful tool in your arsenal to be able to mentally re-package your experience into something positive.
If you’ve rested, reset, reflected and you still haven’t brought back your motivation, it might be time for some tough love. Sometimes you just have to pull yourself up by the bootstraps and get to work. No other way around it. Every once in a while, we just have to push through the tough times to get to the other side. Then again, maybe you just need a mindset shift. What if you’re not actually experiencing a lack of motivation? I’ve mentioned a couple of other potential explanations for this creative slump. Dehydration. Exhaustion. Your current struggle could be a combination of things, right? They all lead right back to letting yourself rest and taking care of yourself. Other explanations could be lack of inspiration. Feeling overwhelmed, underprepared, or under-qualified. I’m here to remind you that you can do anything and everything you put your mind to. The second you believe that you can accomplish something is the second that you’ve done so. Like I said before, mindset is everything! Use this slump time to explore your true feelings. Find the thoughts and beliefs inside yourself that propel you forward or hold you back. Find ways to change your mindset from the “bad” and to emphasize the positive. Remember, the more you practice, the easier it becomes.
Embracing rest, reflecting on your accomplishments and reframing challenges are three great tricks you can keep coming back to again and again. Sometimes they might not work, sometimes they might all work. Circumstances will dictate what the right method for getting back in the saddle will be, but what’s most important is that you feel a little less lost on your quest to find your inspiration again. Now let’s get started on that credit report. Let me know one (or three!) of your accomplishments in the comments!