THE BEST WAYS TO STAY MOTIVATED
Maintaining motivation for content creation can be tough. Creating a good quality article/drawing/graphic etc. is not a process that should be rushed. The problem with having a process that works best when un-rushed is that, if you have a team of people depending on you, there will be times that you kind of have to rush it. Luckily, here are some lessons I’ve gathered through my own content creation experiences. They help speed that process up without sacrificing the quality of your work. Keep these in mind for maximum motivation!
NOT EVERYONE WORKS THE SAME
Don’t compare your routine for getting tasks done to your friends’, because there is no “right” way to do it. As long as you both get from point A to point B, the end product is all that matters. Case in point: my boyfriend and I both like to play video games. If I’m craving some Sims, I treat myself to some gaming time before setting into work-mode as a way of getting it out of my system. This tactic does NOT work for my boyfriend. He will end up being unable to stop- so he uses game time as a reward for AFTER his work is done.
DON’T FORCE IT- TAKE A BREAK
Unless it comes out naturally, chances are your writing will read like crap. If you’re on a deadline and you’re just forcing words out to get an assignment done, you’ll get it done. Unfortunately, you probably won’t be too proud of the end result. When I’m having a mental block, I like to step away from my work space for a bit. It clears my head for a bit, and gives my brain a break. A change of scenery, or even just doing things around the house could be good for you. It might jog your mind into that “aha” moment you were waiting for.
Honestly, this is where calendars and/or day planners work wonders. For me, at least, SEEING when something is due drives it home that much more in my memory than just filing it away in my mind. Once you have your due date, it’s important to plan accordingly. Most of all, HONESTLY. If you have a research article due in 4 days, really give yourself those 4 days. Don’t jump the gun and tell yourself you’ll have it done the next night. It will just make you feel like you failed when it was really just an unrealistic goal to begin with. Chopping those goals up into mini-goals will increase your motivation. Each little task won’t seem so huge anymore.
For example, you can “get a rough outline done” by the next night. Then there’s “getting the research done”. After that is “write out a rough draft”. That’s followed by “polishing the rough draft up”. Finally, there’s “type up the final article”. It’s also important to be pretty flexible with your goals, because you never know what situations may arise. You may have planned to get the rough draft of a paper written Thursday night. However, your dog ended up deciding that you’d both be spending most of the night at the vet after he treats himself to Legos for dinner.
MAKE CREATING A PART OF YOUR ROUTINE
If there’s anything that being a freelance writer has taught me, it’s that you can train your body to know when it’s “creating time”. For me, “writing time” comes after coffee is consumed and sweatpants are donned. (Jeans are too constricting to write in.) Your workplace, wherever it may be, should ideally be distraction-free. Like I said before, everyone is different. You may enjoy some music playing or the TV on in the background… whatever puts you in your “creating time” zone!
WORK WITH WHAT YOU KNOW
This last part isn’t always possible unless you can choose your own subject matter. In the event that you can, I’ve found it’s always best to choose a subject you’re already familiar with. It won’t even feel like an assignment. It’ll just feel like airing your feelings in a very public diary. Your finished product will feel stronger, since you’re confident in what your piece is saying. It will read as more engaging and higher energy.
All in all, whatever creative content you’re producing, you’re doing it because you enjoy it. The worst thing you could do is make the process of creating so hard on yourself that you lose the desire to do it at all. If you find yourself losing interest in the content you’re creating, that’s a good indicator to take a step back and re-evaluate your process and where things might be going wrong. Whatever the case, I hope these tips help you to keep creating and stay motivated!