• Siphokazi Vuso

How to stay motivated and productive during uncertain times

The recent COVID 19 outbreak has impacted our lives in varying ways, It has significantly disrupted global trade and travel flows and has brought many economies to its knees, with South Africa losing its last investment-grade rating changing the country’s outlook from stable to negative. it suffices to say, global pandemics do not come cheap.

Not only has the pandemic affected our countries economy it has also forced us to rethink the way we work, travel and do business.

Staying motivated, and productive during uncertainty can seem like a daunting task. Facing uncertainty feels scarier than facing physical pain and that's because our brains are wired to constantly create and update a set of rules, and predictions of how the world works, a disconnect between our worldview and reality creates a disruption which causes uncertainty and which can lead to anxiety and fear about the future.

To remain motivated, and productive during times of uncertainty and stress, we have to break free from old patterns of thinking and allow ourselves to become open and agile to new ideas, perspectives and learnings.

Here are 5 ways to stay motivated and productive during the COVID 19 outbreak.

1. Get your head in the game

Change and uncertainty can be scary and brings with it that well-known knot in your gut, your palms start to sweat and before you can say Corona you have lost the plot, but this is not the time to stress your pretty little head. Pause, reflect, check-in with yourself, most importantly stay focused and present, as the adage goes, this too shall pass.

2. Be Proactive

Stephen R Covey, author of the classic personal development book The 7 Habits of Highly effective people defines being proactive as taking responsibility for our own lives. Our behavior is a function of our decisions, not our condition. How we respond to the impact of stress and uncertainty determines how it will affect our lives, think about it and ask yourself what you have the power to control right now, identity your circle of influence and your circle of concern.

3. Create your own space

Believe it or not, our physical environment determines our levels of productivity and performance which significantly impacts our well being. Work-life balance is no longer just a fancy buzzword used by millennials, it is a crucial component to the growth and development of any organization.

Small changes like decluttering and organizing your workspace, sitting at a desk while you work, planning and taking small exercise breaks can help you get things done.

4. Embrace the digital era

The COVID 19 pandemic is our current reality and its a given that the outbreak has influenced the way we work. Due to social distancing to curb the spread of the virus, many businesses and organizations have adopted remote collaboration tools and strategies to manage teams and collaborate on tasks. Many of these tools integrate which makes them more efficient and easy to navigate.

5. Make time

As we have entered into the nationwide lockdown, we must be reminded that we are always bound together, things may look a little bleak at the moment, however, if we follow the regulations and precautions it will all soon be over. We hope you use this time to recover and reflect to learn new skills and create new ideas, may this be a time to pause and reflect on what matters most, and most importantly may we see the impact of the COVID 19 pandemic as a blank canvas to a new beginning.

Stay Safe.

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