Everyone has to do things in life, whether it be working towards a degree, completing a project at work, running errands, or even just getting out of bed in the morning. Part of the secret to doing these things and getting things accomplished is having some good old motivation. Motivation can help us complete the smallest of tasks available and can help smash the largest of goals. However, sometimes it can be difficult to stay motivated, especially for long periods of time. Need some tips to make sure your motivation stops running off? Here are 8 of them!
Start your days the right way.
Starting a day the “right way” will mean something different to everyone, and that’s great. Try to figure out what starting a day “the right way” means to you. Is it waking up to drink a fresh cup of coffee? Going on a jog? Meditating and stretching? Writing?
No matter what seems like the “right way” to start your day, dedicate at least 10 to 15 minutes for yourself each morning. You can take as much time as you’d like, of course! Take your desired amount of time and do what you need. Reflect on your goals, what you plan for the day, read a book, listen to music, eat breakfast, meditate, do yoga - whatever suits you. Start your morning with it and keep at it!
Establishing a good, consistent morning routine is a great way to give yourself something to look forward to each morning and get your motivation started for the rest of the day. You’ll also have something in common with motivational speaker Tony Robbins, who keeps an established morning routine. According to a writer for Forbes, he even once said “If you don’t have 10 minutes for yourself, you don’t have a life.”
Set attainable goals.
Big, long term goals are awesome and necessary, but if they’re the only goals you set, it may be easy for you to become discouraged and lose motivation. Setting attainable goals in addition to large long term goals, or similarly, dividing goals up into smaller parts or single tasks can help you feel much more motivated.
For example, got a large report to write for work? Rather than sitting down and trying to complete the report all at once, try taking it section by section. Take a day or time slot to write your introduction, then another to provide your report, then another to wrap up your information. Breaking up your goals or tasks into smaller parts is less stressful, allows more time for breaks and refreshers, and can increase your chances of staying motivated.
Take time to visualize.
David Seabury once said “Try out your ideas by visualizing them in action.” We agree. A great way to envision a goal or idea and how it may turn out is to visualize it. Additionally, visualizing your goals and ideas helps keep them in the forefront of your mind so you don’t lose that motivation.
What are some good ways to visualize your goals?
- Create a mood board or goal board
- Keep a bullet journal
- Plan things out
You can create a mood board or goal board using an actual board or wall, a notebook, a picture frame, or even on the go with an app like Pinterest. You can also create a bullet journal from just about any notebook or journal you like. Using a wall calendar, desk calendar, paper planner or planning apps can help you know what’s upcoming, what to look forward to and help keep you organized so you can stay motivated.
Track your progress!
You’re smashing your goals and making progress - track them! Doesn’t it make you feel more accomplished every time you get to check off another item from your to-do list, or when you complete a goal? It can help increase your motivation, too! Having visible progress is a great motivator as it shows you how far you’ve come, and how close you are to completing whatever you want to complete.
You don’t have to perform any crazy analytics (if you’re into that sort of thing) to track your progress; you can simply create a list and check off your progress as you go along, or whatever you come up with.
Reward yourself and acknowledge the accomplishments you’ve made.
Setting smaller, attainable goals can give you plenty of opportunities to celebrate the accomplishments you’ve made, and you should take advantage of them! You’ve put in the hard work and should be recognized, even if it’s by yourself. Reward yourself with something, too - a coffee, a break, a walk, an episode of your favorite TV show or whatever else comes to mind. You’ve earned it!
Engage in positive and helpful self talk.
It’s ironic, but it’s pretty easy to be hard on ourselves. Focusing on your shortcomings or what you did wrong probably isn’t going to help keep you motivated, though. So what if you flipped the script? Engaging in positive self talk and focusing on what you’ve done right while keeping in mind what you can improve on can absolutely add to your motivation. Think of how you talk to yourself, out loud or in your head: would you say the same things to a friend? To a family member? To a stranger? Probably not. So why are you saying those things to yourself?
You’ve probably given someone in your life a pep talk or some advice. Do the same thing for yourself! Positive self talk can have real life effects. Don’t believe us? Take it from someone else: Bonusly says “A simple shift in bias toward positivity and happiness can have an immediate impact on your work experience and relationships, which are major factors in success, motivation, engagement, and productivity.”
Remember the reasons why you have the goals you do.
When you set goals, you undoubtedly have reasons for setting the ones you do. If you feel yourself losing a bit of your motivation, try reflecting on your goals. Why did you make a specific goal? What’s in it for you? What are its other benefits?
Take time to reflect on your goals and remember the reasons why you set them to bring yourself more clarity and motivation.
Keep up your self care!
When someone brings up self care, you may think of getting a massage, going shopping, or something else we equate with “treat yo’ self” culture today. Those things are self care, and they may be ways you keep yourself motivated. However, self care can come right down to the simple things: sleeping enough, eating well, and allowing yourself to take breaks.
You may be familiar with a popular quote by Eleanor Brown: “Rest and self-care are so important. When you take time to replenish your spirit, it allows you to serve others from the overflow. You cannot serve from an empty vessel.” Think about it for a moment: how can you accomplish your goals and stay motivated if you don’t have anything to give? Goals can’t work without you - so that’s why it’s so important to make sure to take care of yourself.
Some of the most basic ways to engage in self care and stay motivated are:
- Getting enough sleep! Young adults and adults age 18-64 need 7 to 9 hours of sleep a night for an adequate sleep schedule. Time to catch some Z’s.
- Eating well. Eating well is something else that will vary from person to person. Whatever eating well means to you, make sure you aren’t skipping meals and that you’re staying hydrated to give your body and brain the nutrients they need.
- Allowing yourself to take breaks. We’re a society full of busybodies. It’s easy to get caught up in tasks and keep going until we burn ourselves out. Burning yourself out is never fun, though, and it’s not good to continually do to yourself or your body. Allow yourself to take breaks! When planning out your tasks, allow for 10 to 15 minutes in between tasks to give yourself a break. If you need to take breaks during whatever you’re doing, that’s great too!
Ready to Stay Motivated?
Motivation: we all want it, and we all need it. We also need to be able to keep it. Luckily, there are tips and tricks out there to help us stay motivated through whatever comes our way!
To stay motivated, remember these tips:
- Start your days the right way.
- Set attainable goals.
- Take time to visualize your goals.
- Track your progress.
- Reward yourself and acknowledge your accomplishments.
- Engage in positive and helpful self talk.
- Keep up on your self care.
You’ve got this!