Motivated at Work Picture

At some stage of your career, you may experience burnout from long working hours and high levels of stress. There may even be a time when you experience boredom due to the lack of challenges at your workplace.

In both cases, leaving your job to seek better opportunities elsewhere may seem like the most ideal solution. However, it is almost impossible to guarantee that you will not face the same situation in your next job. Rather than looking for an exit opportunity, you may want to consider strategies that will keep you motivated, to prevent burnout or boredom.

Motivation is like a burning fire. It is easier to sustain fire by adding coal, than to revive one that has been put out. To keep this fire going, you must recognise what truly motivates you. These “coals” could be in the form of internal or external motivation, be it monetary rewards, growth opportunities or simply organising the way we work. There is no one-size fit all strategy.

Since change begins within, what is put forth here are five strategies that you can consider motivating yourself with.

Like organising a campfire gathering, these strategies only require you to add the coals, start the spark, plan for refills, gather the people and finally have fun!


#1 Add the coals


Coals are the essence of a campfire. Therefore, you must first add the “coals” by creating your own personal goals. In addition to those set by your bosses, ask yourself, what do you want to achieve? It could be learning a new skill that is relevant to your job.

Upon completing each goal, celebrate the mini milestones and reward yourself for your achievements. By doing so, you are constantly challenging yourself to develop at a comfortable pace, which can help prevent boredom at work. It also helps to deepen your engagement with others when you share about your new-found knowledge and skills.

Working towards a personal goal can also be a good way to break away from the daily grind and relieve stress.


#2 Start the spark


After the coals have been set, you will need to start the spark. How? By unleashing your creativity and initiate new ideas and activities for your workplace. For example, form a new toastmaster club within the organisation, or organise a paintball game for your team.

When you are more involved in conceptualising ideas and implementing them, you are more likely to feel engaged and motivated to work.


#3 Plan for refills


To keep the fire going, you may want to plan the frequency of refilling the coals. Likewise, take time to plan your schedule and to-do list. It is easy to get overwhelmed by endless deadlines and suffer from burnout quickly. However, having an organised schedule allows you to pace yourself, and plan for sufficient breaks to be recharged. It may also create a sense of fulfilment as you tick each task off your checklist!


#4 Gather the people


What fun is there if there is a campfire without people? We spend more time at work with our colleagues than with our family and friends. Although some caution the formation of friendship at work, studies have found the value work-friendship can bring to their motivation at work.

A research conducted by Gallup found that employees who have a best friend at work are seven times more likely to be engaged in their job and produce higher quality work. Therefore, these friendships may be one of the reasons to look forward to work.


#5 Have fun


With everything in place, all that is left is to have fun! Putting a different front at work and sustaining the carefully crafted image can tire you out mentally, eventually leading to a burnout.

As much as possible, show your authentic self at work. Only when you stay true to who you are, will you be able to know what you want to achieve in your job, and be motivated to strive towards it.

Now with the knowledge of these five strategies, you too can easily “organise a campfire” at work! Feel free to share with us too your strategies to stay motivated at work.


In Emergenetics, we consider the above strategies using a Whole Emergenetics (WE) approach. Here are how the strategies consider the different thinking and behavioural preferences.


Analytical Thinking

What motivates the analytical preference thinker most is knowing why and what are they trying to achieve. Therefore, having a personal goal would motivate them to work towards the goal, and while doing so keeping them engaged and motivated at work.


Conceptual Thinking

Conceptual thinkers are likely to feel energised when they have the freedom to explore and suggest new ideas at work. It breaks their current monotony that would keep them motivated at work.


Structural Thinking

Structural preference thinkers want to know exactly what to do, by when and how. Therefore, having a schedule motivates them to start on the tasks as there is clarity in what needs to be done. Each completion would then fuel their motivation to complete subsequent tasks, keeping them continuously motivated at work!


Social Thinking

For Social preference thinkers, people and relationships are the most important to them. The formation of friendships at work thus become extremely crucial because they are driven by the effort their fellow colleagues and clients put in.


Behavioural – Expressiveness, Assertiveness and Flexibility

“Flexing” is known as behaving in a manner that you would not have in your natural state. Continuous “flexing” may result in exhaustion and demotivation at work. If you feel constrained that you are not able to express yourself, drained by the need to assert more than you would have preferred, and weary of the constant change in decisions, you may be “flexing” too much.


Take time out to craft personal strategies using your preferred attributes that may help you overcome the areas that are constraining you. For e.g., if you are feeling drained by the need to assert more than you prefer, craft a strategy that allows you to assert in a way that appeals to your other preferences – 3/3 Expressiveness: face-to-face, Social: over a casual cup of coffee, etc.


Speak to your superior about your struggles and how you feel your Emergenetics preferences may help you stay motivated using strategies that still allow you to embrace your authentic self at work.


Further, with the WEapproach, you can even help your team construct strategies that are suited a myriad of preferences and help your team-mates, and you, stay motivated at work!

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