Five steps to a Motivational Monday

It’s Monday. Again.

Most of us are feeling the need for that extra cup of coffee this morning and likely a little groggy as the alarm yelled at you to wake up, far too early. Weekends go by way too fast as we try to cram in every bit of fun time, down time, family time, social time, and time to workout. The weekends can be so much fun but also really freaking exhausting! In my humble opinion, that’s why so many Monday mornings can feel daunting and draggy.

I am here to say I have found 5 easy ways to help Monday mornings be the motivation you need to get through a great week! I know what you’re thinking…this chick must be insane, but honestly I think you will like at least one or two of these ideas and be able to implement them into your lifestyle without too much extra effort.

First things first, you’ve got to have the right attitude. I think the best way to start your Monday morning off on a brighter note, is to stop repeating those social negative norms to yourself. If you assume Monday is going to be a drag, chances are thats the way you will start your day. Before you close your eyes Sunday night set an intention for the day ahead. “Monday will be the beginning of a week of accomplishments” or “Monday will not get me down”. It kind of sounds a bit cheesy and like a load of fluff, but honestly it works! According to Psychology Today (Aug. 2, 2011):

          As far as your brain, every thought releases brain chemicals. Being focused on       negative thoughts effectively saps the brain of its positive forcefulness, slows it down,              and can go as far as dimming your brain’s ability to function, even creating                                                                   depression.

And, that is just one example of how positive thinking can truly be beneficial to finding your Monday Motivation. There is so much research on how positive thinking, including practicing gratitude, can be impactful, it is overwhelming. One article I loved from positivepsychologyprogram.com goes so far to say :

The latest findings in Neuroplasticity, however, indicate that the happiness set point can be changed, based on what we focus on and the activities we perform.

So as we practice gratitude, optimism and self-compassion the neurons in our brain form more connections, and the area of the brain grows and becomes stronger. Over time, this alteration in our brain can change our set point of happiness (Greater Good Science Center, 2014).

Positive thinking truly is THAT powerful. Thats a game changer.

My second method to finding your Monday Motivation is all about the practice of gratitude. Gratitude changes the Attitude! So, you guys are probably getting sick of my constant promotion of the practice of gratitude, but this is the stuff that happiness is born out of my friends! Honestly, just try it for a few days, commit to a week, but every day think about what you are grateful for and jot it down some where. I write three things I am grateful for each day in my Fit Planner, but you could grab a small notebook, you could jot a few things down on a sticky note and stick them in your agenda, write them on your calendar. Hell, grab a napkin and jot them down and keep them in your bag. But commit to it, keep your notes and reflect at the end of your gratitude “trial period”. I think you will be pleasantly surprised to see how much more positive and exciting each day is when you see what you have to be thankful for. Some people think these have to be deep, intense moments of gratitude but some times I am thankful for kids who go to bed on time, or a cold drink on a tough day. Other days I am grateful for my health when I see someone struggling. It varies day to day. There are no right or wrongs here. No judgements. Its all you.

Third, have a plan. This does require a bit of work on your part, but if it means that you don’t waste an entire day of the week moping about and being grump simply because that day is Monday, then make a plan to make it great! Some ideas are to make a plan for the evening to have something to look forward to. This could be as simple as a plan to veg out and catch up on trash TV when the kids are in bed, or a random dinner out with friends/family. It could be that you plan to wear a new outfit to work this Monday or that you’ll get up a few minutes earlier to get all dolled up instead of just throwing on whatever is in front of you and putting on more than the 5 minute face. This was one of my all times FAVES when I was working outside the house. Maybe its your cheat day, maybe you just plan to get up from your desk and take a moment of mindfulness and self care on your lunch hour to help fuel you for the rest of the day. You get the idea. It can be as simple or thought out plan as works for you!

My fourth tip is, get excited! Get pumped up about the week ahead. Man, we are blessed to have a job to go to or a hobby we love so find a way to incorporate that passion or love for something into your Monday routine. If your favorite part of your job is networking, maybe you can plan a meeting for Mondays to connect with likeminded folks for a planning session. Or maybe, you LOVE getting your hair done and your salon is putting on a class, sign up! It could be planning a trip to the local pool with the family after dinner or a hike with your fur baby after work! But get excited about something! That will help propel your positive thinking on Monday morning and hell, you may even be grateful for it in your gratitude practice later!

Fifth, if at first you don’t succeed, try try again. So, what I failed to mention is, this will likely not be easy. Progress not perfection is one of my mantras for the month and it completely applies to this practice of finding your motivation on Monday morning. Sometimes best laid plans fall apart. Life happens, and it can throw us curveballs even when we think we have a plan A through Z. This doesn’t mean it CAN’T be done, it just means you may have to try again. This may come with feeling discouraged and frustrated but I am speaking from personal experience when I say that, with time, it WILL happen. Mondays don’t have to be a mythical sucker of all things fun, Monday IS and CAN BE the gateway to full-filled weeks and goals accomplished.

If today was less than motivating for you, give these 5 tips a go and let me know if and how your perspective changes. And, believe me, I am practicing all of this right a long with you!

 

~M~

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