5 secrets to stay motivated at work

April 1, 2015, 3:45 PM UTC

MPW Insider is an online community where the biggest names in business and beyond answer timely career and leadership questions. Today’s answer for: How do you stay motivated at work? is written by Sarah Robb O’Hagan, president of Equinox.

For me, it’s exercising. I know – how surprising for the president of a fitness company, right? But even if I weren’t President of Equinox I would have the same answer. I believe motivation comes from living a balanced life, both in and out of the office. And exercising can definitely help, both physically and mentally. However, I also realize exercising alone won’t have you jumping out of bed every morning. That’s why it’s so important for employees to find ways to remain interested in their jobs on a daily basis. Here are a few ways I stay motivated every day:

Exercise early in the morning
Staying motivated at work actually starts before you walk into the office. It’s extremely important to work out — whether that’s going for a run or meditating — it’s about finding a balance. Finishing a work out before you enter the office helps you start your day on the right foot and gives you the energy necessary to accomplish other tasks throughout the day.

Spend time with co-workers
I believe it’s important to get to know all of my employees outside of the office — grab coffee, lunch, or even work out together! We spend so many hours of our life in the workplace, why shouldn’t we use the relationships we make to stay energized? For instance, I recently learned that one of our IT employees is a huge movie buff — he gave me a ton of great recommendations that I never would have thought of myself. When you take the extra time to get to know your colleagues on a personal level, you might be surprised by how much they can inspire you or spark a new interest.

Create moments for inspiration
I mean this on an individual and team level. On an individual level, I spend a lot of time reading and catching up on what’s going on trend wise. I apply the same approach to my team. For example, I will frequently take my team to visit other companies that are outside of the fitness industry. These trips help us widen our perspective and acknowledge how other companies are tackling new trends, ultimately helping us to reinvent ourselves and Equinox.

Push yourself
If you always do work that your comfortable with that’s fine, but eventually you will start to lose your motivation. Sometimes actually pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone can be inspiring — similar to the feeling you get when accomplishing a workout goal. So I always encourage people to push their professional limits –jump into a new project or attend a brainstorm meeting.

Be sure to regenerate
Get enough sleep! I cannot reiterate this enough. It is so important for employees to reenergize each night, and best way to do this is by getting enough sleep. In addition to a good sleep routine, it’s also important to take daily breaks from your work. If you’re stressed out over a project or client – just walk away. Getting up and removing yourself from your desk is the only way to reframe your perspective, allowing you to come back to the office feeling energized and ready to take on the challenge.

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