Saturday 31 July 2021

Finding the model railway mojo

Over the past few months I've lost interest in model railways. I don't read as much or watch Youtube train layout videos. My layout in the garage languishes despite the bottom deck being completely functional and operational (OK, it is often 4 degrees Celsius in there but that's no excuse!). Conversing with other railway modellers has diminshed markedly. Ripping up the layout and housing the cars sounds like a very good option indeed.

  Finding the right levers to bring back motivation can be difficult

Recently, I did some research for work on motivation in the workplace. As I read a wide array of articles, there were some common themes that nagged away at me as I passed by the garage door each day. These themes were as follows:

  • Being bored with your routine
  • The sense that the job is all too much 
  • Not being satisfied with what you’ve done
  • Comparing yourself to others 
  • Feeling stressed about what you’re doing

Now for a hobby, these themes are pretty counterintuitive. The purpose of a hobby is to alleviate all of those motivation killers. But motivation does lapse from time to time and we need a way to get our mojo back. How to bring the "hobby" back to being a "hobby"?

If I review my readings on motivation again, I get the following answers:
  • Remind yourself of the purpose and reset your focus if you have to
  • Check your environment (i.e. change or improve your environment)
  • Get back to small tasks instead of focusing on the grand outcome
  • Similarly, it's the doing not the end in itself that makes the hobby so interesting 
  • Realise there is an ebb and flow in what we do (i.e. don't be too hard on yourself)
  • Celebrate what you've already achieved
  • Start something new to find new motivation that can remind you what it feels like
I'll report back next month to see how things are going.