Solution Saturday: Maintaining Motivation
It’s “Solution Saturday” and Ken asks how to maintain motivation two or three weeks after a layoff, for example?
Patterns make or break you, not one moment.
Success is a series of decisions and behaviors that move you toward desired goals.
You think and say things you normally wouldn’t, when you feel down.
Reject first thoughts when you’re discouraged.
- Discouragement disorients.
- Discouragement interprets advice as criticism.
- Discouragement causes defensiveness.
You need a “with” when the sky is dark and the path seems long.
People who get the most help rise the highest.
Avoid backward facing neediness. Embrace forward facing empowerment.
- Hang with someone who’s in the same boat.
- Hang with someone who has been where you are, but passed through.
- Look outside your company for support and insight.
- Explore options (Emphasis on the plural) with others.
- Let someone hear you say, “I intend to ….,” Do your intentions hold water when someone else is listening?
- Avoid fixers. People who offer easy answers and quick solutions to discouraged personal are irritating.
- Avoid minimizers. “It’s not that bad,” doesn’t help.
5 quick tips:
- Clarify your personal goals. What do you really want?
- Keep serving. Don’t sabotage yourself by punishing your organization.
- Ask, ’If this adversity/discouragement could speak, what lesson would it teach me?”
- Focus on things within your control.
- Minimize complaining about things you can’t control.
Bonus: Don’t judge yourself because you’re down. It’s a double downer to feel down and then judge yourself for it.
Adversity is an opportunity for clarity.
What suggestions can you offer for maintaining motivation after an extended dry spell?
Two recommended books on grit:
The Soft Edge, by Rich Karlgaard
GRIT, by Paul Stoltz, Ph.D.
I’m sending Ken a Leadership Freak coffee cup because I used his topic.
Hi Dan. Thanks for another wonderful article. The bonus tip of not judging yourself for feeling down has proven true for me. I’m recovering from cancer surgery and often feel I need to be strong for those around me. Yesterday, I actually verbalized that I was sad and was feeling sorry for myself. My husband asked me a few questions about how I was feeling and we chatted for a while. A few minutes later, I felt better. I suppose it lifted my mood just to know that it was okay go through all the typical stages of grief when dealing with cancer and that it wouldn’t panic those around me.
Thanks Sherry. You honor us with your story. Feeling “ok” seems to help, when days are dark and uncertain. Perhaps one gift we give each other and ourselves is permission to be human.
You have my best for complete recovery.
Continued blessings be to you, Sherry. How beautiful that you would inspire us by sharing your experience with us. You speak well on behalf of your “with”–God, trust, faith, hope, husband, others. Joy shared is “double joy.”
Sherry, it has been my personal and professional experience to see and know
those who are afflicted in whatever ways who pray for others while in the same need, will be answered first. How powerful are the prayers of the afflicted!
What a wonderful message. I was thinking of joining a support group or possible becoming a support diva on the curediva.com website which is an amazing resource for breast cancer patients and survivors. I think this just tipped the scale. Words of connection are powerful! Have a wonderful day.
Thank you Dan, I appreciate these thoughts today and look forward to “Mugging with LF Cup” daily. 🙂
You are most welcome, Ken. It’s a useful topic!
Love this post Dan. I know it is true of me that I react differently when I’m down. Thinking about this when I’m not down will be helpful when I am. Well written!
Believe in yourself knowing how you made your journey this far and what you will do to be employed again. Trust yourself you can find a new beginning and be prepared when an opportunity presents it self. Think what you have to do to survive and make it happen. No one will have handouts for you, try and try again till you suceed. Start your own company if you have the desire and capabilities to do so.
Remember when your feeling down and blue someone out there loves you. 🙂
Taking a step back and looking at the situation is required. From my experience, it is never as bad as it seems. The key is to look for the redeeming value in the challenge. If nothing else, this time will serve as an opportunity to learn and gain just a little more wisdom.
This is a great post and so relevant to most of us who go through life of our own volition.
I suppose it all comes down to how a situation occurs for us. It is this occurring, based on the baggage from the past that we carry, the rackets that we hold against people etc. which one needs to be very conscious of. As we hold this consciousness, we also gain the understanding of how the same situation may be occurring differently for others, leading to their way of being and actions being significantly different.
Once we understand the above, we also gain the ability to shift our occurring and accordingly shift our level of motivation.
It is really challenging task to motivate people after lay off in the organisations. People already live in fear and uncertainty. They start losing confidence. To motivate rest employees, one way could be explaining with convincing response and ensuring no lay-off in future.
I agree that people observe pattern. They analyse outcomes with patterns and it create a judgmental attitude. And this plays great role in determining success of the organisation.
I would offer creating system and tools in place to maintain motivation. I think most of the organisational practices that create dissatisfaction or demotivation are based on subjectivity and individual interpretation.
So, there are two way approach to maintain motivation- keep system and processes in place and ensure proper execution without being influenced by any parameter. It this is done properly, I am sure, people will be motivated.
Never, Never give up
It is interesting to juxtapose this column against the interview with (and the reading of) Simon Sinek in Leaders Eat Last. It seems the core reality of the situation may not have been tackled here (with the presumption that the decision to fire these people came from higher up in the organization than the person for whom the solution is directed). We attempt to sugar-coat it with “lay off.” Until one comes to a fundamental realization in their own mind regarding what the leadership of the organization truly values and how those values stack up against actions, it is impossible for trust to exist. Without trust (such as that exhibited by Sherry in her husband), this organization is going down. The 5 quick tips certainly head the right direction. Dan, I would challenge you to look at this subject again and start with the fundamental diagnosis coming from “Why” and moving forward from there. This world makes it far to easy to fire co-workers, spouses and children. The grit needed is to actually be honest with everyone in the organization, make the hard decisions based on a longer-term view, clearly communicate that vision and live it out in the face of adversity and opportunity.