Find Motivation In Just 5 Seconds

Kyle Smith by Kat Stokes on Unsplash

Feeling a bit unmotivated to do what you need to do? Maybe even a bit distracted? You're not remotely alone.

Maybe you didn’t sleep very well. Or you simply don’t want to do the task at hand. Whether it is cleaning the house, revising your novel, replying to an email, or doing some other task, it’s all-too-common to lack motivation from time to time.

Drinking more coffee isn't the answer. Consider this from Heathline: Caffeine’s ability to help people stay awake is one of its most prized qualities. On the other hand, too much caffeine can make it difficult to get enough restorative sleep. Studies have found that higher caffeine intake appears to increase the amount of time it takes to fall asleep. It may also decrease total sleeping time, especially in the elderly.

According to Psychology Today, Motivation is the desire to act in service of a goal. It's the crucial element in setting and attaining our objectives. Motivation is one of the driving forces behind human behavior. It fuels competion and sparks social connection.

But I have some good news for you. You can change your approach — in a matter of just a few seconds. Simply pick the task you know you need to do and count down from five (either aloud or just in your mind). Then go and do it.

As you do this, you’re going to find that you have some extra pep in your step. You’ve got some clarity and even some additional focus. I’m not saying it’s as good as coffee — but this approach works really well. In fact, it’s almost instantaneous. You’re like a rocket taking off into outer space.

Your brain will tell you that it is officially time to start. It’s time to go. No more procrastinating or waiting. You need to move now. And that is VERY powerful. This kind of power is really something that will move you.

Why This Approach Works So Well

I think there are several reasons why this approach works.

First, it gives you a break. It gives you a few moments focus, and then it even forces you to decide what you’re doing. You can’t have several actions you want to take with the 5-second approach. You have to narrow it down to just one.

I think the most important part is that this approach can change your attitude, especially when you’re feeling resistant.

Do you ever have one of those mornings where you keep hitting snooze and can’t get out of bed?

When you use the 5-second approach, you can literally give yourself that extra push to get out of bed and get going. No need for the snooze alarm anymore.

Give the 5-second approach a try. I’m not saying it works for absolutely everyone, but it can work really well if you’re feeling stuck or lacking motivation.

Here’s the thing about getting more done: the little tricks and tips that work for you will start to add up. Say you know you work with the Pomodoro Technique which is when you use a timer for a set amount of time for a specific task then take a break for a designated amount of time. If you combine the 5-second approach with the Pomodoro Technique, it might be a great fit for you. It really gives you the best of both worlds.

Try this 5-second trick out. Be willing to experiment. Be honest with yourself during the process too. And, most importantly, get more of what matters to you done. You'll be glad you did.

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I write about writing, productivity, creativity, and much more.

St. Louis, MO

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