With flexibility comes responsibility …

No-one can dispute that working from home gives you enormous flexibility. You have more time because you are not commuting, you have more money for the same reason and instead of taking a tea break stood in a public area you can now put on some washing, water your garden or take a delivery. It really is the perfect way to integrate home and working life. You are around for the school run, can organise early evening social events and put something in the oven whilst you are still at the office.

With that amount of flexibility comes an equal measure of responsibility. It is easy to work when you are in the office with all of your colleagues and there is little else to do. It takes a much more structured and disciplined approach to make that true when everything you like to do and spend time with is right there at your fingertips. So should you use motivation or inspiration? Do you know the difference? There is one and it isn’t as subtle as you might think

MOTIVATION is the activation or energisation of goal-orientated behaviour. INSPIRATION is the act or power of exercising an elevating or stimulating influence upon the intellect or emotions.

I would define motivation as moving away from energy and inspiration as moving towards energy. To explain what I mean and the difference think of something that you want to do. Let’s say you want to get on top of your emails and clear your inbox. The motivated person doesn’t want a backlog of emails so cracks on to get the old emails sorted, replied to, deleted and filed. When the job is done you are free of the task. When a friend calls and suggests meeting for coffee, you can say yes, task done and you feel good. Why not a little reward; call it an early lunch, pop into town, while you’re there get your dry-cleaning, pick up a loaf of bread … you see where the day is going? Motivation creates a yo-yo effect. You don’t want something, you move away from it, it is no longer there and the motivation is gone, things build up, now you don’t want them again, you move away from them, they are no longer there and the motivation is gone. I’m sure you get the picture. This way of working can be extremely stressful and although it would appear you live a charmed life of little ties to your office the truth is often feelings of guilt and concern as to when you are going to get found out, or go broke if you work for yourself.

Now let’s look at the inspired worker.  The inspired worker wants to be efficient and that includes being up-to-date with their communications. Emails get done at least once per day, phone calls get returned, pro-active calls get made, pro-active emails get sent. The focus is on efficiency and the desire is to be a joy for your clients to work with. You go the extra mile for people because you love doing that. You respond to people because you know that is pleasing to both you and them. You call people because everyone likes to hear a human voice once in a while. You are inspired and your inspiration pulls you towards a bigger game. Your success levels go up. You get promoted. This creates a step-up effect. You get up, you plateau, you get up, you plateau. The sky is your limit!

Most of the people you admire, respect, want to be or want to be like will be inspired by something. The slim fit friend is inspired by good health, the well-read friend is inspired by knowledge, the friend with the interesting social life is inspired by new things and the popular friend is inspired by a love of people. The successful person is inspired by greatness.

So next time you are working from home (or the office) spend the first five minutes in silent thought finding your inspiration. What is pulling you forward; that magnetic force that draws you to it?

For help working out how to work from home or making the transition from where you are to where you want to be please contact one of our Consultant Coaches at churchillbrook@gmail.com

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