I often read different articles about motivation in the workplace, how Managers and Leaders in organisations need to inspire and motivate employees. It’s a tough task because there are so many facets to what motivates you to do a good job each day.
But the thing is, even when you have a great job, you know exactly the contribution you are making with a really juicy project and you know you could possibly change the world…don’t you just simply come into work sometimes, and motivation alludes you? You want to put your head on the desk and sleep, you’d rather go for really long coffee break than dig your teeth into that inspiring project. We all have these days, sometimes it is triggered by something that has happened in work environment (politics or gossip), sometimes something in our personal life throws us off (kids who are sick and wake you up 10 times in the night) and sometimes it happens for no apparant reason at all.
As one of my previous managers would say…time for a “Colouring In Day”…what? huh?
She explained that given her motivation was so low, all she felt capable of doing was sitting and colouring in a picture, like you used to do at school. No real brain power required. So, on her “colouring in” days, she just accepted that she wasn’t feeling on top of the world. It was not the time to tackle the big projects. She would review all her to do’s, break off all the “easy/simple” tasks and choose this day to get them done…perhaps even something like cleaning off her office desk. She would also let us all know she was having a “colouring in” day, so we knew not to bother her with complicated issues (plus we would all have a bit of a laugh about it).
Now…not everyone is in a position to do this, nor can you take this approach for more than one day in a row. But sometimes, I think we put too much pressure on ourselves to always be “on”, to be the fabulous person we know we are every single day we are working. Giving yourself permission, to just take a slow day, get some easy things done…usually results in a few productive things being done, and whole new you when you wake up tomorrow, refreshed and in a much better position to tackle the big projects.
So, do you need a colouring in day today?
(I’ve even attached a picture for you to colour in, which apparantly will help you with some creative meditation…BONUS!)