Losing Motivation In Life: How To Find It Again

Learn about the common causes of losing motivation in life and how to overcome them with practical tips and strategies.

Motivation is the force that drives us to pursue our goals, dreams, and passions. It gives us the energy, enthusiasm, and direction to take action and achieve our desired outcomes. Without motivation, we may feel stuck, bored, frustrated, or hopeless.

However, motivation is not always constant or easy to maintain. Sometimes, we may experience lapses in motivation that leave us feeling uninspired and lacking the drive to pursue our dreams. Boredom, stress, burnout, overwhelm, and a lack of clear goals can lead to a loss of motivation.

Losing motivation in life can have negative consequences for our well-being, productivity, and happiness. It can affect our performance at work, our relationships with others, and our self-esteem. It can also make us more vulnerable to mental health issues such as depression and anxiety.

Fortunately, losing motivation in life is not a permanent condition. There are ways to regain it and get back on track with our aspirations. In this article, we will explore some of the common causes of losing motivation in life and how to overcome them with practical tips and strategies.

Common Causes Of Losing Motivation In Life

There are many possible reasons why we may lose motivation in life. Some of them are:

• Burnout: Burnout is generally a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion that can be caused by prolonged and excessive stress1. It can lead to a lack of achievement motivation, as individuals may feel they do not have the energy or drive to tackle new tasks or projects.

• Boredom: Boredom is a state of dissatisfaction with the current situation or activity. It can result from a lack of challenge, variety, novelty, or stimulation. Boredom can reduce our intrinsic motivation, which is the motivation that comes from within ourselves and is based on our interest, curiosity, or enjoyment of the activity.

• Overwhelm: Overwhelm is a state of feeling overwhelmed by the amount, complexity, or difficulty of the tasks or goals we have to accomplish. It can cause us to feel stressed, anxious, or helpless. Overwhelm can impair our motivation by making us feel that we are not capable or competent enough to handle the situation.

• Lack of clear goals: Goals are the specific and measurable outcomes that we want to achieve. They provide us with direction, focus, and feedback. Without clear goals, we may lack a sense of purpose, direction, or progress. We may also have difficulty prioritizing our tasks or measuring our success.

• Lack of self-confidence: Self-confidence is the belief in our own abilities, skills, and worth. It affects how we perceive ourselves and our potential. A lack of self-confidence can undermine our motivation by making us doubt our capabilities, fear failure, or avoid challenges.

How To Overcome Losing Motivation In Life

Losing motivation in life is not a hopeless situation. There are steps we can take to restore our motivation and get back on track with our goals. Here are some of them:

• Take care of your basic needs: So many problems in life can be attributed to a lack of sleep, a poor diet, and not enough exercise2. Sleeping six hours a night and living on Chinese takeaway food will inevitably, eventually, lead to burnout and loss of motivation. Solution: Determine how many hours of sleep you need and get those hours consistently. Eat a balanced and nutritious diet that provides you with enough energy and nutrients. Exercise regularly to boost your mood, health, and brain function.

• Practice self-compassion: You might think being hard on yourself is the key to getting motivated. But harsh self-criticism doesn’t work. Research shows that self-compassion is actually much more motivating, especially when you are struggling with adversity3. Self-compassion is the act of treating yourself with kindness, understanding, and acceptance when you face difficulties or failures. It helps you cope with negative emotions, learn from your mistakes, and maintain a positive self-image. Solution: When you feel unmotivated, don’t beat yourself up or call yourself names. Instead, acknowledge your feelings, remind yourself that you are not alone, and speak to yourself as you would to a friend.

• Set SMART goals: SMART is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. SMART goals are goals that are clear, realistic, and meaningful. They help you focus your efforts, track your progress, and celebrate your achievements. Solution: When you set goals, make sure they are SMART. For example, instead of saying “I want to lose weight”, say “I want to lose 10 pounds in 3 months by exercising 3 times a week and eating healthier”. Write down your goals and review them regularly.

• Break down your tasks: Sometimes, we may lose motivation because we feel overwhelmed by the size or complexity of the tasks or goals we have to accomplish. We may feel that they are too hard or too far away. Solution: Break down your tasks into smaller and more manageable steps. For example, if you want to write a book, start by writing an outline, then a chapter, then a paragraph, then a sentence. Focus on one step at a time and reward yourself for each completion.

• Seek variety and novelty: Boredom can kill motivation. If you are doing the same thing over and over again, you may lose interest and enthusiasm. Solution: Seek variety and novelty in your activities. Try something new or different. Learn a new skill, take up a hobby, or explore a new place. Challenge yourself with new goals or tasks that require you to use different abilities or strategies. Find ways to make your activities more fun or engaging.

• Find your purpose: Purpose is the reason why you do what you do. It is the meaning or value that you attach to your actions or goals. Having a purpose can boost your motivation by giving you a sense of direction, fulfillment, and contribution. Solution: Find your purpose by asking yourself questions such as: What are you passionate about? What are your values? What are your strengths? What are the problems that you want to solve? How can you make a positive difference in the world? Align your goals and actions with your purpose and remind yourself of it often.


Motivation is not a fixed or static trait that we either have or don’t have. It is a dynamic and fluctuating state that depends on various factors such as our needs, emotions, environment, and goals. Losing motivation in life is normal and common, but it is not irreversible. By understanding the causes of losing motivation and applying the tips and strategies discussed in this article, you can regain your motivation and get back on track with your aspirations. Remember, you have the power to motivate yourself and achieve your goals. You just need to take the first step.

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