5 Ways to Remotivate Yourself

Checked out? How to check back in, either at your current job or another one. 

Rasha Accad

Career Coach, Korn Ferry Advance

Quiet quitting was so 2022. Millions of workers shared stories (hopefully not overheard by their bosses) about lacking motivation to do more than the bare minimum. According to one recent survey, 59% of workers globally aren’t currently engaged by their jobs.

But it’s 2023 now, and maybe you don’t want to punch the clock any longer. Getting reenergized might soon become a career necessity—above and beyond questions of motivation. With economies worldwide slowing down and artificial-intelligence programs taking over some jobs, it might be in your best interest to be more productive and show an employer—even if it’s not your current one—some enthusiasm.

If you’ve been checked out, here’s how to get your head and heart back in the game, and how to identify when it’s actually time to quit.

Recognize the negative cycle.

Quiet quitting can be bad for your mental health. “As humans, we’re wired to give our best, be invested, and get a sense of pride out of producing good work,” says Rasha Accad, a career coach at Korn Ferry Advance. We’re also wired to feel a sense of affinity with our colleagues. If you lose that sense of connection, your morale will naturally fall and your attitude could rub off on the people around you.

If you’re quiet quitting, it’s not only your own performance that suffers. It’s also that of your coworkers, who might feel a sense of resentment and passive anger toward you. Experts say each person on a team has a social responsibility not to spread toxicity to everyone else.

Understand how you got here.

Unless something really dramatic happened that you can point to, it’s likely that an accumulation of events made you become disengaged from work. Career experts say that it’s important to trace back the causes to really understand your unmet need or needs in terms of your manager, colleagues, leadership, compensation, company culture, the type of work you do, and way work is done.

Reach out to others for help.

Once you recognize the negative impact of your disengagement on your daily life and morale, taking the first steps to change will give you an immediate boost. Fortunately, many people will likely want to help you. Assess who would be the best person to confide in, perhaps a career coach, a trusted colleague, a mentor, your boss, or a therapist. Ask for nonjudgmental advice and support. Be honest about the reasons for your quiet quitting and how it has affected you, your productivity, and the team, Accad says. “Come with some potential solutions to propose,” she adds.

Make an action plan.

Following your meetings with your trusted advisors, come up with a short-term and a long-term plan to remedy the situation. The short-term plan may involve making peace with your less-than-ideal present, and the long-term plan may involve looking for a new job. There are situations where the company, role, or manager are just not a good fit with what you’re looking for in your career, and nothing you can do can change that. Establish a clear timeline for all actions you commit to.

Don’t neglect the non-work parts of your life, either. Fill your weekends with activities, or a new hobby, that allow you to disconnect and forget about work. Experts say this will positively affect your work life and overall well-being.

Find out where you can grow.

Burnout is a state of physical and emotional exhaustion, and it’s a common cause of quiet quitting. It can come from having too much on your plate, but also from being bored by repetitive tasks or a lack of growth opportunities. “Instead of thinking the entire job is worthless, ask yourself if you're lacking a challenge,” says Mark Royal, a senior client partner for Korn Ferry Advisory.

If there's a different role that could challenge you, talk to your boss about ways you can position yourself for it. If there are skills you want to gain, start acquiring them. If there are people you want to connect with, reach out. If dull tasks are taking up a lot of time, look for areas to create or automate systems. It can be empowering to realize you can take charge of your own career.


Learn more about Korn Ferry’s career development capabilities from Korn Ferry Advance