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How to Reignite Motivation During Low Points

March 29, 2024

How to Reignite Motivation During Low Points

Finding motivation when you’re at your lowest can be challenging. Whether in personal life or your career, low points are inevitable, but they are also opportunities for growth and renewal. This article explores effective strategies for rediscovering motivation, incorporating insights from Nicol David’s approach to overcoming setbacks in her illustrious squash career.

Understanding Low Points

Everyone faces setbacks. In careers, this could mean failed projects or missed promotions; in personal lives, it might involve relationship issues or personal losses. Recognising that these experiences are normal parts of life can help in managing them more effectively.

“We sometimes brush it off and maybe think that, you know,
you can’t show emotion or you can’t show that this hurts you.
It’s okay to feel it and let it sink in, let it, let it hurt.”

– Nicol David

A young Asian man preparing for the start of the marathon, a race on the stadium's running track.

Strategies for Finding Motivation

1. Reflect on Past Successes: Remembering times when you successfully navigated challenges can boost your confidence and motivation. Nicol David often reflected on her past victories to push through future tournaments.

2. Set Small, Manageable Goals: When overwhelmed, breaking down tasks into smaller steps can prevent paralysis and help maintain forward momentum.

3. Seek Support: Engaging with friends, family, or mentors can provide encouragement and new perspectives. Nicol often discussed her challenges with her coach and psychologist, using their insights to strengthen her mental game.

4. Focus on Learning: Every setback is a learning opportunity. Nicol used losses as chances to refine her strategies and skills, viewing each challenge as a lesson rather than a defeat.

Maintaining Confidence and Mental Health

Nicol David’s career exemplifies the importance of resilience and mental well-being. She managed pressure by focusing on her training and preparation, ensuring she was mentally and physically ready for each match. Key takeaways include:

– Maintain Physical Health: Physical wellness supports mental health. Nicol prioritised fitness to ensure she was competition-ready, which also helped manage stress.

– Embrace Mindfulness and Reflection: Taking time for reflection can help understand what’s working and what isn’t. Nicol used solitude to analyse her performance and mental state, allowing her to adjust her strategies effectively.

– Adapt and Evolve: Be open to changing strategies and approaches. The evolution of Nicol’s gameplay over her career, adapting to new rules and competitors, highlights the importance of flexibility and learning in maintaining motivation.

“You feeling that way doesn’t mean you have to let yourself give in to that.
The feeling is the worst but what you do next is the most important thing.”

– Nicol David


Motivation ebbs and flows, and it’s natural to feel down during tough times. However, by taking actionable steps towards recovery, embracing learning opportunities, and seeking support, you can navigate these low points effectively. Nicol David’s career not only illustrates the heights one can reach with talent and hard work but also the resilience and strategic thinking required to maintain such success over time. By adopting a similar approach, anyone can find the motivation to overcome their challenges and emerge stronger.

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