05 May 2021

Random Bursts of Motivation

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I know I've probably mentioned this (many) times before, but I struggle with motivation, especially when it comes to writing. Like, I'm really good at motivating myself to do the dishes, but not so much at doing some editing or brainstorming. I don't know what it is. Sometimes I just feel like all the energy has been sucked out of me, and I just can't bring myself to do it.

When I actually do get motivated, it happens at random and fizzles out just as fast as it started. Sometimes I make a list of goals for the week and I get something done right away, then avoid the rest. Or another thing I'm constantly guilty of is researching different submissions for stories or poetry, bookmarking the websites, and then never actually making a plan to write or submit anything. Usually by the time I go back and look at them, the deadlines have passed or are too close to try to start writing something new. 

I have been working on my goal of doing something writing related every single day for 3 months. I think having a reward at the end is helping to motivate me (I promised myself a giant Cheesecake Factory to go order after the 3 months, and it will take me that long to pick what I want because I've been on a diet for quite some time and I also used to work there so I have a lot of favorites). It really is easy to motivate myself with food (or a fancy Starbucks drink), but I can't constantly be doing that because I'm also trying to lose weight. 

When I get into a slump like this, it really is hard to motivate myself out of it. But I am at least doing *something* every day. Even if it's just a few edited lines. I just wish those random bursts of motivation would come more often. Or that I could think of a reward that isn't food....

Do you struggle with motivation? What do you do to reward yourself? 


19 comments:

  1. I'm currently reading blogs rather than editing my WIP, which tells you something about my motivation at the moment. In my defence, I want to make some major revisions, so I'm 'thinking'.

    A reward sounds like a great idea. I love cheesecake - Cheesecake Factory would be heaven to me. Sadly, the UK is lacking one.

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  2. That's great that you are doing something writing related every day. I'm trying to do that most days, though right now I'm slipping because I'm moving my mom to assisted living. I don't generally reward myself, but that's a great idea. Though I agree with you on not always picking food. Maybe buy yourself a new outfit, a book, or something else you've been wanting.

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  3. As long as the treat is no more than once a month, why not motivate with food? One day is all right. We treat ourselves now and then.

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  4. For me, distraction is the biggest problem. I'm working on a story that requires a lot of research and I keep falling down rabbit holes and then my time disappears!
    I've never been to a Cheesecake Factory - one day when I'm travelling (if that happens!) I'll have. to find one :)

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  5. Yes, sometimes I really struggle with motivation, especially with the current Covid scenario in our country. During those times I force myself to write.

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  6. Sometimes it's not just rewards but seeing results. Small goals you can accomplish will provide that and further motivate you.

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  7. I have the same experience with my weekly goals. I write them out on Sunday, I cross a few off the list right away by Monday or Tuesday, and then Wednesday arrives, and I'm all, "Welp, it was fun while it lasted."

    I am a fan of the reward system, and any time the subject comes up during one of my writers group meetings, I tell everyone to figure out what motivates them, then embrace it. Food is a fantastic reward. Mine usually involve medieval weaponry. :)

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  8. My motivation comes in waves. They hit hard and I'll be super productive, but then they wane and I really struggle to get anything done. Since I know that's how it is, I try to make the most of those waves when they hit.

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  9. Motivation is tricky. We all have our own goals on what matters most. I do love the thought of a great cheesecake :) My motivation right now is a bimonthly submission of 15 pages, so that can create some panic if I don't spend adequate time during the two weeks, making that page count. Happy IWSG Day.

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  10. Motivation and setting "A" time aside to write is, or can be, so hard. Good for you to find ways to get yourself going! :)

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  11. Admittedly, rewards don't work for me because I have absolutely no moderation control. If I want something, I get it, unless I'm particularly abstaining, and even then, I live in a house of enablers, so if I feel like cheating, there's no one who will actually hold me accountable.

    I wish there was some magic switch for motivation. For me, I just want to call this book done and that's my motivation. But it's not a super strong one, which is why it has taken me years...

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  12. That's a great goal. I have my distractions too--usually "research," which pulls me down rabbit holes. I've gotten into a good rhythm lately or writing most days, which ends up being 3-4 times a week. It's helped that I have a friend I meet with to exchange chapters every other week, so I have to have something ready to show her! And we meet for coffee--so that's the other part of the reward. :)

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  13. I struggle too. Some days, I write. Others, I can't type a single word, even though a new story is waiting, fully mapped in my mind. Maybe if I had a reward system in place, it would help. I think you might be on the right track.

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  14. I'm just as bad. My biggest problem is that when I get busy, it's writing that gets put on the time-chop block because the other things always feel more important at the time. I mean if no one has a cup to drink from, it's pretty obvious I'm slacking. Whereas with writing, no one ever notices I'm dropping the ball...until a reader messages me and asks when I'll have another book out.

    Back before I had anything published, I used stickers. Sounds juvenile, but it worked for me. I had little stars and I'd give myself one for every 500 words or chapter edited. It was fun to look back over my calendar and see all my self-provided at-a-girls. Good luck finding your motivation!!

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  15. I've been suffering through a lack of motivation myself lately. A beta reader pointed out a few problems with my manuscript, and some of the revisions aren't going to be easy, so I've been avoiding it. Sometimes you have to just sit yourself down and start writing, whether you want to or not. I plan on doing that starting this coming Monday. Good luck on generating your own motivation.

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  16. I am not good with forcing myself to sit down and write. I blame it on having household chores, but somehow I have time for Twitter. I like your idea of something writing related every day for three months. I might try somtehing similar.

    I think you're going to do it! Don't forget to treat yourself to dessert when you place that order!

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  17. I think it's hard to write if it's forced. I love the idea of a treat. Maybe flowers to brighten up the house?

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  18. Motivation is hard. I think Diane said something good about results being a great motivator. I think if you have something to show for every day you spend some time working on it, it's easier to maintain that long term.

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  19. Ooh, Cheesecake factory, yum. I love their food and I wish there was one closer to me; the nearest one is several hours away. I really like their chocolate peanut butter cup cheesecake. And yes, I struggle with motivation too. 2021 has been a difficult year for me in many ways, so it's been hard for me to focus on writing what with everything else that's been going on.

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