How to Stay Motivated During COVID-19

March 17, 2020

What a challenging time to work. With news of COVID-19 delivering a steady stream of alerts on our phones and inboxes, it’s difficult to focus, much less stay motivated.

Under normal circumstances, staying motivated is a skill. During long projects, it’s a challenge to maintain positive energy and creative motivation. And, during a pandemic, it often feels impossible. 

We can all acknowledge the temptation to become overwhelmed. But, we’re all taking this new normal day by day. 

In the meantime, we’ve got a few pieces of practical wisdom to encourage you and your team as you work in unsettled environments or remotely for the first time. 

Practice Discipline 

They say when motivation ends, discipline begins. Like most things, that is easier said than done. 

In the midst of this crisis, we find no shortage of those contributing to a culture of panic. But, we can also find those serving others and working to alleviate the threat to at-risk populations.

As doctors and nurses work tirelessly to treat those affected with COVID-19, we can do our part to maintain the same standard of excellence in our work even as our workplaces are disrupted.

This is our opportunity to exercise discipline and encourage each other as we work in new situations. In other words, keep calm and carry on. 

Working remotely is an opportunity to discover and connect in a different way. As we engage in new, unfamiliar workflows, we can all look to find ways to streamline familiar processes to be more efficient and solution-driven. 

Set Realistic Expectations 

With so many unknowns, it’s important to set realistic expectations. 

This is not how anyone expected to end the first quarter of 2020, but we have to adapt. And, that means setting new goals, new normals, and realistic expectations for how those will play out. 

We’re human, and we’re going to make mistakes. This adjustment will be tricky, stressful, and likely an extended setback. We don’t know what to expect, and some of us downplay while others expect the worst. 

We’re working to keep our clients updated on what they can expect and what we don’t know. And, we can say that engaging in open communication can go a long way to allay fears and anxiety in the workplace. As does a little grace toward each other. 

Focus on What Matters

When we are faced with a threat, we tend to cut out what isn’t important and focus on what matters. Our families, our health, our security. And, that is a scary process, but it can also be incredibly beneficial. 

That kind of mindset allows us to cut the BS and focus on what really matters. 

We believe in working on content that matters. Right now, that means supporting your needs to get content online that will support your organization as we face mounting uncertainty in the coming weeks and months. 

Our current mindsets actually lend themselves to good creative processes. With so much to distract us, we only have time to focus on messages that truly matter. Health and safety. HR policy updates. Instructor-led content. Online learning support.  

We can all use this time wisely to find creative solutions as we work through this crisis. Social distancing can’t stop the creative flow. 

Limit News Consumption 

The unknown is frightening. And, we cannot look away. 

We’re worried about our local communities, our global economy, and our families and friends. We don’t know when normalcy will return or what that will look like. 

It’s incredibly tempting to watch or read the news constantly. We’re almost always plugged-in, and even more so as we work from home during this crisis. 

But, stress doesn’t add to productivity, nor does it aid your health. While things are rapidly changing, there is no need to check the news every half hour. Try to limit your news consumption to twice a day. Don’t leave CNN on in the background while you’re working. 

Major announcements will be discussed at length in the morning and evening news. We all know this, but we need to practice it, especially right now.


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