Leadership and career

How to Stay Motivated at Work

By April 8, 2016 No Comments

Let’s get the most important point out of the way first: only YOU can motivate you. Motivation comes from within. I’ll be serving up some motivating tips in a moment, but it’s up to you to identify whatever’s standing in your way and then actually apply the tips to your life. No silver bullets, in other words.  Sorry.  That was tough love.


Here we go:

Start Your Day with Exercise

No groaning, please. Just do it.  Your waistline and your heart health aren’t even the point here. The energy boost from a brisk morning workout will increase your energy, elevate your mood and improve your concentration.  Simply reading this tip and nodding your head in agreement won’t help, though.  Lace up the sneakers and just do it.

Connect with Co-workers

You may prefer to not socialize with co-workers outside the office. Fine – but don’t be a lone wolf in the workplace. Always eating lunch at your desk, eschewing break room chit-chat and avoiding any personal investment in the people you spend 40 hours a week with is a problem. Connecting with co-workers is generally good for your career (that’s another blog topic), and it’s definitely good for the soul. Make the effort. You might be surprised how forging friendships with those around you can spark your energy at work.

Seek Inspiration

Your business bookshelf probably already carries popular titles relating to productivity and career success. Keep up the good reading, and consider posting inspirational snippets where you’ll see them.  Bonus points if you share and discuss your favorite inspirational books and quotes with co-workers (see previous tip.)

Push Yourself

Always doing work that feels comfortable to you is a great way to lose motivation over time. Like a bucket with a hole in it, you will feel your passion draining away unless you occasionally challenge yourself.  Get out of your comfort zone by volunteering for a new project.  Take a course and learn something new.  Take a leap of faith and do something that scares you a little.  And remember those co-workers you started connecting with?  When you need a pep talk, you’ll have somewhere to turn.

Keep Screw-ups in Perspective

You’re going to make mistakes. Maybe because you’ve taken some risks or maybe because you’ve been complacent and on auto-pilot for too long. Either way, give yourself permission to move on. Your energy and motivation are precious resources that are easily depleted – not by your inevitable blunders, but by your reactions to them.

Rest, Repair, Regenerate

Get enough sleep. Don’t burn the midnight oil in an attempt to get more done, as this will backfire on you.  And don’t forget to take breaks.  Get up from your desk, stretch, take a walk. A brief change of scenery can recharge you and help you refocus when you return.


Maurice GilbertMaurice Gilbert is Managing Partner of Conselium Executive Search, which specializes in placing Compliance Officers and Legal Counsel for clients in the U.S., Europe, Latin America and Asia Pacific. Maurice is also CEO of Corporate Compliance Insights, a worldwide publication devoted to governance, risk and compliance issues. Maurice can be reached at maurice@conselium.com or maurice@corporatecomplianceinsights.com.

Published by Conselium Executive Search, the global leader in compliance search.  

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