As the adage goes, all work and no play make Jack a dull boy. Being constantly involved in our professional careers is a demanding task.

Sooner or later, it takes its toll, mentally as well as physically. Everyone experiences this slowdown in their careers at least once, if not more often. It is vital that we remain motivated and enthusiastic towards our work. Here are a few steps we can take to stay motivated.

1. Perspective

Our perspective is what defines what we are and what we do. Why is it that we work? It is but obvious that our careers are in our fields of interest and expertise. Then why not justify our decision and realize our potential? Constantly reiterate the fact that besides the pay, work is about doing all we can towards fulfilling our dreams. Our professional lives should be about working smart, not only working hard and should give us a feeling of accomplishment.

2. Goal-oriented approach

All the hard work that you put in is going to be fruitful only if you are working systematically towards achieving a goal or meeting a target. Working haphazardly just for the sake of working is not going to help you in any way. It might actually deter you from working on the right things which could make achieving your goals an easier task. Focus on the target from the very beginning. Never try to do too much; take one goal at a time.

3. Plan, plan, plan

A goal can never be achieved without meticulous planning. A big task can be broken down into smaller and easy-to-achieve tasks. These milestones help us in setting deadlines and working in a focused manner to complete each task individually. It also prevents the entire task from turning into a single over-bearing problem. This is essential when it comes to completing a project within a preset deadline. Proper planning always brings about a sense of calm and level headedness. It keeps insecurity and panic attacks at bay. It also ensures that there will be no last moment rush to get the work done, which may lead to unforeseen complications.

4. Do not over exert

Achieving a target is no mean feat. It requires all our concentration, diligence and hard work. There is no shortcut to success, as they say. However, this does not call for exerting oneself to such an extent that it renders us unavailable for the later part of the task. We do not want to be sidelined due to stress or illness during the final execution of the project. It is always advisable to know our limits and work within them. It helps us maximize our efficiency.

5. Scheduled breaks

There is nothing wrong in taking a break every now and then to keep the mind fresh and kicking. Ensuring that monotony does not creep into our work is a very good way to keep up the motivation level. Taking coffee breaks or just stretching your legs about is a good way to get recharged.

6. Work-Life balance is a must

Do remember that while work is an integral part of our lives, it is not everything. There are people waiting for us at home – family and friends. Discussing issues at work, with people close to us is fine, but we should make sure we don’t take carry any negatives from the work place back home and sully the mood over there since the home is a place to relax, to live life apart from work.

7. Treat yourself

This is one of the easiest and effective ways to remain motivated. Giving ourselves a small treat or reward on completing every small task goes a long way in keeping us excited and focused on the overall scheme of things. The reward should be appropriate to the nature of the task completed. Big task, big treat!