The Digital Strategists Newsletter-sm

Work, Distractions, and Mental Fatigue

Hi Subscriber,
Would you say there are more distractions today than, let's say, a year or two ago? At the height of Covid, it was an all-consuming topic. Today, we're halfway through year three and it continues to be a source of stress and concern.

Covid, of course, hasn't been the only challenge. The economy, Inflation, and a whole bunch of other things (none good) have been added to the mix. Is it a wonder why so many people find themselves distracted, tired, and unsure of their plans for the future?

Well, I may not be a psychologist, but I've lived long enough to learn what works and what doesn't when things seem like they're grinding to a halt. Let's say you're not at your best. You're tired. Maybe a bit overwhelmed. What do you do?

Put it in Neutral Gear

Sometimes the best thing you can do is to put things in neutral gear. Yes, if you already own a business, there's work that has to be done every day. The point is, do what you have to do, but don't go beyond that. Put your personal projects on hold. Take care of whatever client obligations you have and then "disengage" from your work mindset.

Maybe you give yourself a week or more to recharge your battery or think about what you want and where you're going? One thing is for certain, you don't want to make any major decisions if you're not at 100% and firing on all cylinders.

So give yourself the luxury of a little downtime.

Identify the Real Source of Your Stress

If you've been living your life stressed out for any length of time, it can become a normal way of living for you. It's like people who are always in a hurry, even though no one is rushing them. It becomes a habit. Worry is like that. It's a habit. Now, let's look at your business. What about your business do you truly dislike? Is there a specific element that makes you unhappy?

Maybe you're offering too many services? Maybe you need to adjust what you're offering? Are you charging enough? Are you working with the right type of clients? Do you need to rebrand yourself?

I know from personal experience that sometimes so many things need to be changed, that it's hard to know where to start. Just thinking about it can be overwhelming. But the reality of it is fairly simple. Everything happens one step at a time. Sometimes slow, gradual progress is the only viable option on the table and you have to be okay with that.

Have Your Motivators Changed?

Motivation is the most significant predictor of success. At least, that's what the experts say. But what happens when the thing(s) that motivated you in past no longer motivates you today? If that's the case, you have to find new motivators! Research has shown that the longer someone is in a career, the less important innate ability (i.e., intelligence) is and the more important motivation becomes. In other words, the most successful people just keep plugging away longer than others.

It's great if you can identify some kind of great motivational force that drives you. That kind of drive, however, can be fleeting. It's like the excitement we experience when starting a new project. Starting something new is often exciting. Managing what you started over the long term, however, is another story.

Sometimes you can find a type of longer-lasting motivation in the smaller things. For example, the desire to create a quality product can provide with you enough motivation to push you through the dry times.

The Challenges and Opportunities of Our Time

On the downside, I believe there are more opportunities in 2022 to be distracted and sidetracked from the things in life and business that truly matter. On the plus side, I believe the opportunities for success are greater today than they've ever been. The digital business world is exploding with growth and opportunities for growth. I've experienced this firsthand over the past two years.

If there was ever a time to be in business for yourself, it's right here and right now.

So, let me encourage you to keep on keeping on. Sure, take a break if you need to. Regroup and simplify your plans if it makes sense to. Maybe you have doubts? I get it. The truth is, doubts may come and even persist. But, you can weather the storm and come through the challenges stronger than ever.

Jim Galiano


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