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4 Reasons You’re Losing Motivation at Work



losing motivation at work

The number of Americans who love their job is dwindling. Research indicates that only 30% of workers in the U.S. feel truly engaged and inspired by their careers.

48% said they don’t even like their job, and 18% said they were actively disengaged at the office because they hate what they do. Based on these stats, you might think unhappy employees would simply get out and find a different job.

However, that solution would only suit a fraction of the many dissatisfied employees in the workforce. In actuality, the majority need to discover what’s preventing their engagement with their job and make an appropriate change.

It begins by identifying the cause of your lost motivation. Unmotivated employees are 10 times more likely to be dissatisfied and frustrated with their job.

If this applies to you, here are 4 reasons you’re losing motivation and how you can fix that:

1. You feel insecure in your job

Whether the company you work for is going downhill or you feel as if your boss is constantly breathing down your neck, job insecurity can take all the fun out of working. Your energy gets expended in circulating rumors with coworkers, sweating over visits to your boss’s office, and failing to concentrate fully on your tasks.

Solution: Communicate directly and frequently with your superiors to determine the state of your job and the company. If you know what’s coming, you’re more likely to work securely, even if you’re having to search for another job on the side.

“I don’t believe you have to be better than everybody else. I believe you have to be better than you ever thought you could be.” – Ken Venturi

2. There’s no vision driving your career choice

As much attention as we pay to it, money is really only a small portion of most workers’ motivation. Often, people are inspired to work hard because they have a purpose, and they hold a vision that leads them closer to success.

People like to feel that they’re progressing toward something bigger and better in their lives, or they’ll start to feel bored about what they do.

Solution: Set attainable goals for yourself and check them off regularly as you go. Your goals might include improved performance in the office or a change in your personal life that moves you closer to a happier, healthier you.


3. The people in charge don’t seem to know what they’re doing

When you believe the company owners or your managers are incompetent, you lose confidence in them. It’s difficult to perform your job with full vigor, and it’s easy to feel like work is a joke, when you find yourself in that situation.

Solution: Unless your boss approaches you for advice on how to improve his or her leadership skills, you probably shouldn’t offer any recommendations on how he or she can improve. At this juncture, you’re probably better off looking for a job with a boss you can get behind.


4. Your coworkers are unpleasant

Sometimes the pay and type of work don’t matter so long as you have a great set of coworkers. The people who work at a particular company often are the make-or-break factor in whether your job is tolerable, or even rewarding. When you’re stuck among unpleasant colleagues, it’s difficult to get sufficiently motivated to do anything productive.

Solution: If you don’t like the work or the pay, it may be time to look for another position. If you love the work and don’t want to leave just because a few people give you sour looks, change your attitude or work on conflict resolution within the office.

“We can’t become what we need to be by remaining what we are.” – Oprah

The outcome of your efforts isn’t going to be certain, but it’s worth a try to keep a job you love.

What are some other reasons you might be losing motivation at work? Please leave your thoughts in the comment section below!

Anna is a freelance writer, researcher, and business consultant from Olympia, WA. A columnist for, and more. Anna specializes in entrepreneurship, technology, and social media trends. Follow her onTwitter and LinkedIn.



  1. Angela

    Jun 23, 2016 at 5:17 pm

    Like number 2 states, I don’t see the vision in moving forward with my career at the company I am currently with. But the good news is that I recently took a leap of faith and decided to move to a different company that will better suit my needs. I start the new job in 2 weeks. So excited!! Thanks for reminding me that I did the right thing.

  2. Lim

    May 11, 2016 at 12:59 am

    I think that having a common vision among the team and among coworkers are extremely important. Without a common destination, everyone will focus on doing their own work and there will be no synergy.

    And you are right about money may not always be the main motivator for people to work harder. People work hard because they have a purpose and a vision. Plus, they must be passionate about their work. And when the purpose is strong, the vision is clear and the passion is there, nothing can stop people from moving forward.

  3. Tim Denning

    May 10, 2016 at 6:54 am

    Anna for me, I am not losing motivation at work. I think the reason most do lost motivation at work is that they do not have a passion for what they’re doing. This has been the secret sauce to my success in the business world. Thanks for sharing your advice.

  4. Jason Moore

    May 9, 2016 at 1:38 pm

    This list could be a lot longer. Some motivation gets killed by simply having too long of a commute – if an employer knows it’s employee’s have to travel from far and pay to park, they can consider having their employee’s work remotely. Also, employees need to believe in the companies mission – the work has to be more than just a paycheck for the greater good of the company in it’s entirety. I completely agree with the article in that job itself should help a person achieve their personal goals, and should consider finding new work if their goals are not getting met.

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