Overcoming Lapses In Motivation: What To Do When You Feel Uninspired

Updated March 29, 2023by BetterHelp Editorial Team

Motivation may be a powerful force that drives us to achieve our goals and aspirations. However, it might not be uncommon for individuals to experience lapses in motivation, feeling uninspired and lacking the drive to pursue their dreams. These moments might seem frustrating and disheartening but try to understand that this may be a regular part of the journey toward success. In the process of trying to combat the feeling of lack of motivation, you will have to identify when you are experiencing it and strategies for overcoming it. By understanding the root causes and implementing practical solutions, you might regain your motivation and continue on your path to success.

Lack of Motivation Can Lead to Other Problems Like Depression - Don't Let It

Common Causes Of Lack Of Motivation

Burnout: This may be a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion that may be caused by prolonged and excessive stress. It might lead to a lack of motivation as individuals may feel they do not have the energy or drive to tackle new tasks or projects. Burnout may occur in any area of life, including work, school, and personal relationships.

Stress: It might be a normal response to challenging situations, but it may negatively impact your motivation when it becomes chronic. Stress might lead to feelings of anxiety, depression, and fatigue, which may make it difficult to find the motivation to tackle even the most basic tasks.

Boredom: Maybe one of the major causes of feeling unmotivated, especially when individuals might be stuck in a routine or feel that their current tasks or projects lack meaning or purpose. A lack of stimulation and excitement might lead to apathy and disinterest, which may make it challenging to find the motivation to complete tasks.

Feeling overwhelmed: Could be caused by a few factors, including a heavy workload, a lack of support, or personal problems. When individuals feel overwhelmed, they may feel unable to cope with the demands placed on them, leading to a lack of motivation and a sense of hopelessness.

Lack of clear goals: Having clear and specific goals may to the answer to having motivation. A lack of clear goals might lead to confusion and uncertainty, making it challenging to find the drive to pursue your aspirations. Finding the motivation to take action might be difficult without a sense of direction or purpose.

Not every person may experience these effects; understanding the root cause of the lack of motivation could help identify the best approach to regaining motivation.

How To Identify When You Are Experiencing A Lack Of Motivation

Recognizing when you are experiencing a lack of motivation might seem like an impossible task, but there may be some simple signs that could indicate your current state.

Several Signs May Indicate A Lack Of Motivation, Including:

  • Difficulty getting started on tasks or projects

  • Procrastination

  • Lack of energy and enthusiasm

  • Disinterest in activities that were once enjoyed

  • Negative self-talk and self-doubt

  • Increased absenteeism or tardiness

Strategies For Overcoming Lack Of Motivation

Setting small and achievable goals may help break down larger tasks and projects into manageable chunks, which may help to restore a sense of control and accomplishment, providing a sense of purpose and motivation to continue working towards larger goals. Try to make realistic goals and break them down into smaller steps.

Breaking tasks into smaller chunks: It might help you overcome overwhelming feelings and make the task feel more manageable. Helping you restore a sense of control and motivation may make it easier to get started and maintain momentum.

Prioritizing self-care: Self-care may be ideal for maintaining overall well-being and might play a key role in overcoming a lack of motivation. Prioritizing self-care activities such as exercise, healthy eating, and adequate sleep might help to improve energy levels, reduce stress and improve mood, making it easier to find the motivation to tackle tasks and projects.

Finding inspiration from others: This is likely to be a powerful motivator. Reading about the achievements of others, listening to motivational speeches, or talking to people who have overcome similar challenges might provide inspiration and a sense of perspective.

Changing your environment: Doing this might provide an effective way to overcome a lack of motivation. This might include reorganizing your workspace, taking a walk outside, or working in a different location. A change of scenery should help to break up the monotony and stimulate the brain, making it easier to find the motivation to tackle tasks and projects.

Seeking professional help: If lack of motivation persists, it may be beneficial to seek the help of a professional. A mental health professional might help to identify the underlying causes of a lack of motivation and try to provide strategies and support to overcome it.

Benefits Of Online Therapy

For those who may be lacking motivation, especially when it may be brought on by stress, burnout, or mental health issues, online therapy may be a useful remedy. Online therapy is perhaps more convenient and accessible because it enables people to get qualified assistance from the convenience of their own homes. Additionally, it removes the need for taking time off from work or other obligations by allowing individuals to schedule sessions at convenient times. 

Effectiveness Of Online Therapy

An analysis of the outcomes of online therapy for people who lack motivation was published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research. A hundred adult who reported low motivation was randomly assigned to either a control group or an online therapy group for the study. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) techniques, which have been proven successful in treating symptoms of low motivation, were the main focus of the therapy sessions. Goal-setting, problem-solving, and techniques to combat negative thoughts were covered in the therapy sessions. Throughout the eight weeks, the control group did not receive any care. The motivation and well-being of both groups were evaluated before and after the treatment period using standardized tests. According to the study, the online therapy group's motivation significantly increased compared to the control group. Participants in the study who received online therapy reported higher levels of motivation, improved moods, and greater life satisfaction.

  • Self-care activities such as exercise, healthy eating, and adequate sleep may help to improve energy levels and reduce stress which may make it easier to find motivation.

  • Finding inspiration from people who have overcome similar challenges or listening to motivational speeches may provide perspective and serves as a powerful motivator.

  • Changing your environment by reorganizing your workspace or walking outside might break up the monotony and stimulate the brain.

  • Online therapy may benefit those lacking motivation since it might be more accessible and convenient than traditional in-person therapy.

  • A study found that online therapy delivered through CBT techniques increased motivation, improved moods, and increased life satisfaction.

Lack of Motivation Can Lead to Other Problems Like Depression - Don't Let It

Counselor Reviews

“I’ve been working with Dr. Butler for a few months now and I’ve seen tremendous change in how I view my problems and strengthen myself to tackle them. Have really enjoyed working with him and his very open and positive attitude is always a pleasure. I leave every session energized and motivated.”

“Maria is a lovely therapist who helped motivate me to make some changes in my life such as pursuing school and employment.”


Overall, online therapy, particularly cognitive-behavioral therapy techniques, maybe a promising way to help those struggling with low motivation. The study showed that through focused sessions and goal setting, online therapy could increase motivation levels, improve moods, and increase life satisfaction. Online therapy may also be more accessible and convenient than traditional in-person care, which may make it easier without having to find time away from work or other obligations.

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