Morning Motivation: How to Find It and Keep It

October 5, 2020
4 Min Read
Photo by
Rich Stromwall

Ever wonder why some days we wake up motivated to conquer the day and other days our motivation is nowhere to be found?

The truth of the matter is that you're not going to feel motivated every single day. We may start out the some days on top of the world, but fall flat. Paying attention to your mood and how you treat motivation, especially in the morning, will help increase your efficiency.

Before we dive into the search for motivation, check out our productivity guide. Here's a master guide of the inspiring go-getters, the do’s and don'ts, and professionals who can benefit from learning more about how to optimize their day.

How does motivation affect you

According to Psychology Daily, motivation is the desire to act in service of a goal. It's the defining element in setting and attaining your objectives. Research shows that people can influence their own levels of motivation and self-control.

According to a 2012 Academy of Management Journal study, strong performance effects when it came to quality of work and productivity. The participants who exuded a more positive mood provided higher-quality service. The study showed that they were more articulate on the phone with fewer “ums” and improper grammar.

Participants who were in a negative mood took frequent breaks from their duties to get themselves through the day. Ultimately, these small breaks piled up leading to a greater than 10% loss of productivity.

"We only need to be motivated for a few short moments. Between those moments, momentum or habit or unconscious focus takes over."

Peter Bregman, author and CEO of Bregman Partners

Morning motivation starts the day before!

People need time to “recover” from the night before. That means allowing yourself time to unplug, step back, and just relax. Think twice before sending that late-night message or scrolling through Twitter hoping sleep will come soon. This might actually set up a rough start for the next day.

Try shifting your daily cycle by going to bed earlier or going outside first thing in the morning. The daylight resets your circadian clock and helps you get more out of your morning. Don't believe us? See what TED speaker Satchin Panda has to say. 👀

Using mornings to boost performance

The next time you find yourself having a rough start, you may want to take a deep breath before walking in the door and creating an “intentional transition." This might involve taking a different route to work, giving yourself a pep talk, or listening to a favorite podcast.

Based on the “Inner Work Life Effect,” developed by Harvard Business School professor Teresa Amabile, creativity and productivity expands when an individual make progress in meaningful work, even if it’s just a small progress.

The next time you find yourself feeling overwhelmed or unmotivated to work on a task, remember that just a sliver of progress is enough to get you farther than you thought. Even small changes in your morning can have big ripples in your productivity.

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