Finding Motivation When You’re Ready to Quit
I’ve been trying to get funding for my research, but nothing has come through. You, too? I’ve had past success with the National Institutes of Health and small foundations. But I haven’t received new grant funding in six years and my last award ran out two years ago. This is well past discouraging.
I’ve felt this before. Turned to my spouse and said, “I can’t do this anymore.” Said, “I don’t have another good idea in my head and I’ll never write another grant.” And yet, somehow, when the next cycle presented itself, I found a slice of hope and truly felt some enthusiasm for the next round. “Round” fits this situation, because I sure feel like I’ve been through a boxing match. I’m not sure if my natural scientific curiosity is a curse or a blessing, but it has helped me to keep moving forward. And I hope it kicks in soon.
I see a blog post here at Edge Scholars about taking a creative retreat to be able to really set aside time to delve into a task. On a related note, my husband suggested I take a few days off to recharge. Between having submitted yet another NIH grant application three weeks ago and, in that same interim time, having learned that my grant from last fall didn’t score well enough for funding, I think he is right. So I went to a local park yesterday afternoon. Found a scrap piece of paper in my car, and wrote and wrote like I was writing in a journal. Then went for a walk. After my time in the park, I didn’t feel like diving into another grant application quite yet, but I definitely was in better spirits.
What do you do when discouragement roars like a lion?