You’re great at what you do and have a clear roadmap of where you want your career to take you. However, even when you have every step, milestone, and promotion mapped out, the reality is that advancing doesn’t happen overnight. Granted, there will be times when you progress quite quickly, but there may also be times when things slow down or when you simply don’t perform well enough to get ahead. For example, a professional development course you were excited about a month ago starts to feel like a drain on your energy, or a work project you felt confident about suddenly appears to be overwhelming.
Moments like these are crucially important, because if you become discouraged, chances are you’ll start to procrastinate. The trick is to stay motivated, even when you feel like you’re standing still.
The link between emotions and motivation
The key to feeling motivated lies in the word “feeling.” According to Eric Barker in his Time article “How to Motivate Yourself: 3 Steps Backed by Science,” emotions nearly always win out over reason. When you’re feeling unhappy, discouraged, or stressed, these negative emotions will almost certainly result in procrastination—even though you know you need to spend two hours each evening studying to earn that advanced degree. On the other hand, when you’re feeling happy, confident, and excited, these positive emotions support you taking action. In other words, positive emotions form an integral aspect of motivation.
Seven strategies for staying motivated
Though some people undeniably have a sunnier disposition than others, there are many ways you can enhance your positivity. The following seven strategies will show you how to cultivate a positive attitude and stay motivated:
Advancing your career takes time and hard work. Use these seven tips to keep yourself motivated, and you’ll find it becomes easier to consistently work towards moving your career forward.
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