Allow me explain motivation spikes. What are these spikes. Why they have such a massive impact on who we are what we do. Why are we driven by these spikes and how can we cultivate it's power to be more productive?

By motivation spikes I mean the desire to work on something. Anything from your day job to a side project or workout or even taking a dump. Why do we do anything? In simple terms its either because you have to or because you want to. If we take out the "have to" from the equation what we're left with is the pattern of Motivation spikes.

Take me for example, if I am interested in a project (talking with recent experience) I can work 16 hours straight on solving a programming problem. Not even thinking twice about taking a break. However, this ability to work unthinkable hours only dies of as the work starts to become work and not that interesting problem nobody every solved. Until, there is another problem I find my self solving, and the motivation spike goes up once again only to burn and crash a few weeks later. I have seen this pattern enough that I realise its not healthy or sustainable at all.

I am curious because this isn't a burnout I am talking about. This isn't how I imagine burnouts to be like. This isn't a physical or mental exhaustion. It's rather a lack of will to work on something anymore that you have worked on for a period of time. It's the lack of motivation for picking up the laptop and working on something specific that you don't want to do. Not nessarily picking up the laptop to use, lets say, use Twitter or even start a new project.

Is the mentality of doing something because your want to do it a massive problem in this age of massive information overload?

After the early excitment dies off and the real "work" needs to start, that's where the motivation spikes starts to trumble. What we need is a way to regulate the motivation and the desire. This is basically saying, we need to know why we want.

Understanding the want is the key here. Channeling the want is the key here. Being careful with what you want and why you want is the key here. Instead of wanted everything now, wanting less in a spread out time is the key here. Remembering why you start is the hardest part once you have started. Thats where the motivation spike takes a detour. That's where the want needs to be defined and expressed in concrete terms.

For some, it's also a good time to take a break from work and go on a vacation, but for me before anything else its important to define or even redefine why I should come back to work in the first place. Not easy at all to implement when you're working for someone or on something you feel you have to or shouldn't, but channeling the want and defining it before anything else is the way forward.