How to get motivated and stay motivated
Life is filled with opportunities, dreams, goals, and accomplishments, but also challenges and setbacks. Few things are guaranteed, nothing is permanent, and at any time, someone can choose to persist or give up on their goals.
Motivation can be very powerful but it is also fragile. In order to get motivated and stay motivated, you need to understand how motivation works and how to keep it strong. Let’s crack the motivation code in 3 simple steps.
Step 1: Ignite your motivation
When you first set a goal, a simple approach to getting motivated is to define your “WHAT”, your “WHY” and your “HOW.”
Your WHAT is a clear vision of what you want to see happen. A vague idea will not motivate you but a detailed vision will be so exciting that it will ignite your motivation.
Your WHY is the sum of your compelling reasons for reaching your goal. If you keep reminding yourself of why you want to succeed, you will be more likely to persist. Think about how your life will change, what will become possible, how you will feel about yourself, and how this will benefit your loved ones.
And third, your HOW is your strategy. You need a well thought-out action plan for success. Having a dream without a plan of action will leave you dreaming without getting any closer to your goal.
That’s a quick and easy recipe to get you motivated on day one but it’s not enough to keep you going in the long run. To remain motivated, you need to identify which thoughts and beliefs are working against you, and change them!
Step 2: Diagnose what can kill your motivation.
Most human behavior is a direct consequence of a person’s perception of the pain or pleasure that will follow an action. If something is expected to bring positive emotions, the person is likely to take action but if unpleasant emotions are anticipated, the person will find reasons to avoid a task or quit the entire project.
Let’s look at what could make you expect negative emotions and kill your motivation.
Here are 3 key questions that will immediately show you what beliefs may be sabotaging your motivation.
1. Can you do it? If you hold a belief that you are not smart enough, not strong enough, not resilient enough, too young, too old, too poor, too busy, too overextended, or someone won’t let you do it, etc. your motivation will quickly fade away.
2. Will it work? If you are not confident that your approach will work, or if you are afraid of the things you can’t control, or if you are questioning how much is really up to you, you will feel disempowered and lose your motivation.
3. Is it worth it? If you perceive the work/effort/sacrifice/cost/risk/time required to be greater than the rewards, you will not stay on track.
Right now, take a few minutes to answer these 3 questions honestly to discover what limiting beliefs are killing your motivation and follow-through.
Did you do it? If yes, now you know what needs to shift within yourself to change your mindset and behavior to achieve success.
Step 3. Focus on solutions and empowering beliefs
It will take commitment, intention and repetition to genuinely replace old beliefs with empowering ones, but while you are working on that, you can start by changing your current perspective to experience an emotional shift right away.
Answer the following questions to help you focus on what you have going for you, instead of what you think is missing:
1. How can I do it? What resources do I have? What qualities and strengths can be instrumental in my success?
2. How can I make it work? How can I reduce risk? How can I create a strategy for success?
3. How can I create the highest return on investment? Understand that it will cost you more emotionally if you play small and don’t try, than if you give it your all. Focus on all of the benefits that success will bring, until you know without the shadow of a doubt that it will be worth it.
Now that you know that you CAN do it, decide that you WILL do it. Making this declaration is more powerful because it shows determination and commitment.
Motivation is a fascinating and complex topic because so many factors can weaken it or strengthen it. Another effective approach is to look at the payoffs of not following-through with something. Lack of motivation can be due to the fear of success, fear of failure, fear of change, fear of changing dynamics in relationships, and so much more!
If you are experiencing lack of motivation with something that is important to you, and are ready to make a change, click here to schedule a free strategy session with me. We will diagnose the source of the problem and create a plan for self-empowerment and success. You’ve waited long enough. Now is the time to get back on track and make things happen! We can do this!
About the author: Since 2010 Dr. Audrey Reille has empowered thousands of professionals through one-on-one coaching, group coaching, speaking engagements, online courses, and interviews on international telesummits. Audrey is the go-to coach for leaders in higher education administration. She empowers them to thrive by reducing stress, optimizing strategies, improving professional relationships, and developing a strong and empowered mindset.