Updated: Mar 16
It's August 2020. The summer is nearly up. And even though we spent most of this year at home because of the lockdown, summer months still feel like holiday to me.
I imagine this is because once, long long ago I was a carefree child with long summer holidays which happened to be in, well, summer.
Hence I find all three summer months very challenging months to be productive. All I want to do is ride my bike, climb trees and eat ice cream. Or sit on the beach with a book and Pina Colada. The latter, of course.
I have so many work-related projects and quite a few passion projects that I’ve been neglecting since spring.
My husband asked me a valid question: "If you are procrastinating or not wanting to work on those - maybe they are not your passion projects, perhaps you are lying to yourself?"
But let’s be honest - we cannot always feel passionate about all our passions, can we? Sometimes we feel lukewarm about them, just like about anything else in life.
Take TV series or films - sometimes I love binge-watching my TV, sometimes I don’t touch Netflix or TV remote for months on end. But it does not mean that I won’t go back to them when the time is right.
The same is true for our other passion projects - writing, knitting, arts & crafts - sometimes we just need to take a break from them, don’t we? Only to start working on them with increased passion and enthusiasm when we feel like it.
But the challenge here is as follows: the longer you leave your project dormant - the more you move away from it mentally and emotionally. Because we change - all the time! What excited us yesterday might be sleep-inducing tomorrow.
That is why we need a sprinkle of self-discipline because anything could turn into a boring chore once the muse of creativity is out of the house.
But how do you get back in love with your passion project? There are different ways, but I decided to challenge myself to 28 Days of Self-Motivation.
I have come with a list of thing I would do for 28 consecutive days to self motivated myself to complete whatever I am working on. I will use my imagination to come up with ideas to allow for my creative juices to flow again.
Create a Vision Board
List Your Achievements
Get Rid of Mental Clutter
Be Intentional and Use Positive or Powerful Words
Accept Your Imperfections
Try Reverse Brainstorming Technique
Explain Your Project in Pictures
Pause and Help Others
Create Fun Playlist
Journal Your Thoughts
Try the Pomodoro Technique
Start a Gratitude Photo Journal
Treat a Task as 'FUN' not Work
Let Your Work Guide You
Create a Metaphor to Inspire and Excite You
Take a Day (or Two) Off
Use Setbacks as Motivation
Use Old Photos as Motivation
Do some Yoga Stretches
Read a poem out loud
Identify and Name your Emotions
Tell your friends about your project
Listen to classical music
Read humorous or funny story
Listen to motivational speeches
Celebrate and Reward yourself
October 2020. And I am here to report a month later. I actually finished my project. In 28 days.
My project was to write a first draft of a novel and I did it!
Every morning I followed this simple ritual: I would make myself a cup of coffee and open my laptop. I would then check my list to see how to inspire or motivate myself on this particular day. I even created Instagram posts about it every single day. But I deleted the majority of them because... I am not entirely sure why. I actually think some of them are quite good and raw.
For my writing I used 750.com website to make sure I write at least 750 words per day. But the daily motivation task made my writing efforts more alive more vivid and interesting to complete.
It felt like I was my own cheer-leader - I'd entertain myself with a daily task and then get to my writing.
I remember writing a short fairy tale as my daily task and then doing my 750 words. I felt so free. And even though my novel was not anything to do with fairy tales, that day I felt a sprinkle of some sort of magical power that was helping me.
So I think it's worth it challenging yourself to self-motivation activities. Even if only to have a bit more fun than usual.