Staying Motivated In A Struggling Economy

Fear is a very powerful emotion. When we live in fear, even of the unknown, there is a tendency to isolate, exert control and be on the defensive. It drains our energy and creates exhaustion.

The majority of coaching conversations I am having these days are about this fear generated by a struggling economy. Worry over business progress, finding a job, salary and bonus eliminations, increased job performance expectations have taken over people’s mindsets thus decreasing motivation and focus for themselves and their business.

While no one has a crystal ball to know exactly what will happen with the economy, you do have the keys to move through this time by the actions you take to minimize the fear and maximize your choices. Following are three key tips on how to refocus and regain motivation during a challenging time:

Key Tip #1 Go Back To The Basics

What are the critical items you need to do to maintain positive movement forward in your career and in your life? What can you take charge of? There are critical items that you need to focus on day in and day out in whatever your work effort is about. If you are unemployed, there are critical items. If you run a business, there are critical items. What are they? Identify, simplify and take action

Tip From The Coach:

Think of this also in your personal life. What critical items do you need to have happen in order to maintain joy and relieve stress? Is it time with family? Time to golf? What critical items do you need that may have been ignored due to your focus on fear?

Key Tip #2 Define And Honor Your Genius Work

In Ernest Oriente and Judy Feld’s book Smart Match Alliances, they describe genius work as “Genius work is the highest and best use of your time. When you do your genius work- the activities that produce the greatest results in the shortest period of time for you – the struggle ends….fast.”

What is your genius work? What is the work you do that suspends time and delivers the greatest results? Define it, honor it and spend the majority of your day doing it.

Tip From The Coach:

To define your genius work answer the following question:

What three areas of focus and corresponding activities that would constitute the best and most valuable use of my time today? (Note: For additional information on Genius Work and the Smart Match Alliance system send me an e-mail with “genius work” in the subject line.)

Key Tip #3 This Too Shall Pass

Because there is no crystal ball, we cannot predict when this economy will take a positive, sustained turn. However, history proves that it will turn. It has always done so; there is no reason to think it will not do so again.

Tip form The Coach:

History also shows that YOU have been through challenging times in the past and moved through those times as well. Perhaps it has not been the economy but other life events. Identify for yourself what life challenges you have faced in the past and how you have navigated the uncertainty. That should give you clues as to your ability to face this current challenge AND specific things you could do to make the process less painful.


Cheryl Leitschuh, Ed.D., RCC is a leadership development specialist. She inspires individuals and organizations to reach their aspirations using the right tools at the right time! Her latest book, The Leadership Energy: Unlocking the Secrets to Your Success, is an Amazon best seller in the leadership energy category. You will find additional tools and resources to expand your success by visiting

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