The COVID-19 global pandemic has left many of us in a state of uncertainty for far longer than we could have anticipated. Initially, this time provided us an opportunity to slow down and enjoy time at home, but as the impact of the virus lingered on with no definite end in sight, many of us have become stressed, nearly overwhelmed as we manage life in a mostly virtual environment.
Overwhelming stress and uncertainty can cause fatigue. As a business and community leader and avid mountaineer, I have had many experiences where I have had to keep my teams motivated in tough situations. For me, the necessity to motivate others is motivating in and of itself.
Whether you are working from home, helping a student navigate remote learning, or have lost your job due to the current pandemic, we all need an extra something in our lives to keeps us motivated and tell us not to get quit when we feel overwhelmed. Here are three simple things you can start doing to keep yourself motivated during the COVID-19 crisis:
DEVELOP A ROUTINE
Life in quarantine can be very monotonous. Every day is just like the one before and we can get lost down a tough path of binging hours of TV without accomplishing anything of value. To keep yourself motivated, it is important to create and stick to a schedule that suits your needs. Simple acts like setting an alarm and getting ready for the day can help keep you on track.
Ensure that your routine is an equal part of professional development and equal part self-care. It is easy to get into an unhealthy habit when working from home while sitting on the couch or on the bed, and it is easy to forget to take breaks to stretch or to have a healthy lunch. Conversely, home can be more distracting than being at the office, creating a balance within your daily schedule will help you tackle your to-do list much more effectively.
If going to the gym was part of your weekly routine before COVID-19, schedule some time for yourself to exercise. While you may or may not be going back to the gym, you can still get a great bodyweight or cardio workout in at least a few times each week. Exercise is a great internal motivator and one that I attribute to my success!
Our society has taken to Zoom and other video conferencing platforms to stay connected during COVID-19. Whether you schedule weekly happy hour calls to stay connected to coworkers, friends, or family members, remember that social interaction is a powerful motivator. Some of my most inspiring moments have been in connecting with a colleague or mentor over coffee or dinner.
We live in a world full of many mind-blowing technological advances and while the current pandemic is not ideal for anyone, we are lucky to be living during a time where we can see people face-to-face wit the simple push of a button. Scheduling time with others is good for your mental health and it will help keep you motivated as something to look forward to.
LEARN SOMETHING NEW
The COVID-19 crisis has presented us with a unique opportunity of time. Instead of rushing from meeting to meeting, or one activity to the next, we can prioritize what is important in our lives. We can decide how we want to move forward and grow in our relationships.
One of the most important things I have learned as an entrepreneur and leader is that you should always strive to learn something new. It does not have to be big or even particularly challenging, but the commitment to learning will help keep you motivated and allow you to enhance your aptitude and awareness.
I am constantly reminding myself that some of the most successful people in the world earned their success by rising to the challenge during their most difficult times. I am a firm believer that if we all harness this type of attitude and energy, anything is possible.
About Bo Parfet
Bo Parfet is the co-founder and CEO of Denali Venture Philanthropy, an investment organization that funds entrepreneurs who are committed to social change.
Bo began his career as a Research Fellow at the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB). He then took a position as an investment banker for J.P. Morgan on Wall Street. Bo also founded Iconic Development, a real estate investment company that earned its way to the Inc. 500’s Fastest Growing Companies in 2012.
In his personal life, Bo is a mountaineer, naturalist, and adventurer. He has completed the Seven Summits, scaling to the highest peaks of the tallest mountains on all seven continents. He shares these experiences in his published book, Die Trying: One Man’s Quest to Conquer the Seven Summits. He also contributed to the book, They Lived to Tell the Tale: True Stories of Mountain Adventure from the Legendary Explorers Club.
Bo Parfet is a member of the legendary Explorer’s Club, an advisory board member for a non-profit organization called Adventure Scientists, and is a member of the Young Professionals Organization. He has a passion for volunteerism. Bo has earned the Presidential Volunteer Service Award for completing more than 4,000 volunteer service hours in countries around the world.
His academic background includes a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Colorado State University, a Master in Applied Economics from the University of Michigan, and a Master in Business Administration from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.