The bad news? It’s Monday. The good news? You can still be productive. If you’re currently slumped at your desk longing for your one true love (your couch), we have some easy tricks to get your creative juices flowing. Keep scrolling for five motivation boosters that will kick your IDGAF attitude to the curb!
If you consider yourself a procrastinator of the highest degree, this trick from Dr. John Perry’s book, The Art of Procrastination, is for you. Write a to-do list, with larger, more daunting tasks at the top, and some smaller, doable tasks at the bottom. According to Dr. Perry, “Doing [the smaller tasks] becomes a way of not doing the things higher up on the list.” Basically, you’re playing your procrastinating nature against itself; you’re avoiding another project by doing something else that’s actually productive, too. And this whole time you thought to-do lists only sounded good in theory.
If staring at the barrage of emails piling up in your inbox fills you with dread (and no desire whatsoever to respond to any of them), do something that makes you happy—now. Studies show that how you start your day has a huge effect on your productivity, and that you actually procrastinate more later on when you start the day in a bad mood. So, when you’ve got a bad case of Monday blues, walk across the street for a guilty-pleasure latte, or sneak away to blast a Taylor Swift song in your car, then come back way more motivated to face the day.
If a specific task seems especially grueling and unappealing today, try to think back and remember a time when doing it made you feel positive. Why? This study proved that recalling and describing a positive memory of a task can bring back those same pleasant feelings. And as we found out earlier, a more positive mindset means a more productive day.
Nike may have made their “Just Do It” slogan as memorable as their swoosh, but when it comes to motivation, sometimes asking is better than telling. According to this study from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, those who ask themselves whether they will perform a task generally do better than those who tell themselves they will. By asking themselves a question, researchers found that people were more likely to build their own motivation.
For example, in one part of the study, participants were asked to write either “I Will” or “Will I” without being told why, and then were asked how much they intended to exercise that week. They also filled out a psychological scale meant to measure their motivation. The result? Those who wrote “Will I” not only did better at working out, but also had more motivation.
And finally, the easiest way to get over your post-weekend slump? Take a walk. This study from Stanford found that walking boosts creative inspiration by sixty percent. If that isn’t motivation to get off your butt, then we don’t know what is.
How do you motivate yourself when you’re in a slump? Tell us below!