When working as a freelancer or with another company you’ll often find yourself stuck in a mental rut. After grinding away for so long you begin to lose interest in the bigger picture. And some days it’s difficult to even find motivation getting started. These mental blocks are completely normal and through practice, manageable.

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In this article I’d like to share some tips for breaking past these barriers in your workday. It can be exhausting to keep running up against these issues. And many of these issues are primarily inside your head. Controlling these drops in morale is all about dealing with your thoughts properly and efficiently. Once you’re excited and passionate to be working then everything else begins falling into place.

Recognize Smaller Annoyances

Usually a lacking of motivation stems from one small thought process which snowballs in your mind. It’s good to begin recognizing these types of thoughts so you have the ability to control them. Getting frustrated isn’t ever going to fully solve the problem at hand.

It may help to keep yourself distanced from problems as they arise. It’s never good to feel emotionally attached to every single issue, especially since you can’t fix everything. Instead keep yourself inline with the next task on your list and keep pushing forward.

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Even more frustrating moments come when you cannot solve a situation at all. You’ll spend 30-60 minutes searching for a solution online with no success. When dealing with these kinds of problems I recommend stepping away for a bit to focus your energy elsewhere. It’s good if you can seek out help from others in a support forum. There are hundreds of forums online and if you post a thread with your question somebody is bound to try helping.

Working is Doing

You should recognize that sitting and thinking is not in the same level as just doing. Thinking about different issues is always important so that you may conclude some reasonable solutions. However at some moment you need to put those solutions into action.

If you find yourself caught up thinking too much, just tell yourself to stop and get back to work! This is a great technique to follow because there is always something to be done. Over-analyzing the situation is only taking away time from project work. And this can leave you even more stressed out when projects aren’t being completed by due-date.

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You should keep a constant list of multiple projects you can switch between during times of stress. Because often you’ll have work that needs to get done at some point, so getting it done early wouldn’t be a bad thing. And you will feel more productive instead of sitting around and thinking, or stressing over failed attempts.

Find Your Own Passion

I can understand that not every project will be truly fascinating. You can try to lie yourself into excitement, but this rarely works out well. Instead you should focus on pieces of projects that honestly do excite your passion to work.

I love web development and I also love writing. Being able to combine these things gives me true excitement during the rather mundane work week. And whatever projects you’re currently working with can be altered in a similar manner. You just need to know how to reach into them and pull out facets which interest you.

Quick Breaks for Rejuvenation

The way many of us work is through a rather autonomic system. Sitting and staring at the computer screen for hours simply isn’t the most productive method for working. I have found that taking small breaks every so often will improve your mental clarity and ability to deal with information.

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How frequently you are breaking is completely personal and will vary from person-to-person. Some people have no problem working 4 or 5 hours straight in front of the computer. But after living that schedule for enough time everybody has to break down. Try starting with a 5-10 minute break every hour or two. If this feels unnatural you can obviously switch around the times to be more or less frequent.

But the most important part is trying out new things and spicing up the monotonous workday. This small yet noticeable spice to life is what drives passionate people to continue forward. Creativity and spontaneity all play an important role during your individual work days.

Seeking Out True Motivation

Even beyond projects we are all human beings searching for different things in life. There is a reason we stay working on projects and this often coincides with freedom to express creativity. This is often motivation enough to get started, but may not be enough to keep you going into completion.

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I have found many inspirational and vitally helpful video presentations on YouTube. Keynote speakers at events & conferences from all around the world have been recorded and cataloged online.

One of my favorite speakers Tony Robbins has hundreds of videos online which are absolutely breathtaking. But there are so many other conferences you can look into which have incredible presentations related to technology, business, finance, and simply happiness.

I believe it is worthwhile to seek out motivation from external sources when needed. You’ll feel invigorated with new energy and your project work seems a lot more likely to be accomplished. This is the truly empowered mindset you want to hold onto and feel every single day.

Final Thoughts

It will still be difficult training yourself over weeks or even months of time. There will be plenty of days where you still do not have the same attention or level of focus. But don’t let these abnormal days drag you down further. Understand it is all a process to work through.

And it’s even more important that you keep pushing forward, even when there’s signs of doubt. Understand that nobody created anything significant in a day’s time and it will take long-term work. But the adjustments will feel amazing once you can ease through each day and naturally progress with your workflow.

Posted by Jake Rocheleau

Jake is a writer & digital designer/illustrator. He writes about all things web and creative. Check out his website for work samples and follow his latest updates on Twitter @jakerocheleau.

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