Motivation is your desire to get things done. It’s what gets you out of bed every day, and moves you forward in life. When you’re ultra-motivated, you believe that you could take on the world and win. In pursuit of your goals, you do everything by the book. You write down your goals, visualise success and think positively about your future actions. Yet, your motivation ultimately dips to non-existent. Confused and frustrated, you still want to achieve your end goal but now you’re feeling overwhelmed, frazzled and a bit of a failure. It has happened to us all – but what can you do about it?
The 3 Modes of Motivation
Motivation has three major modes –
- Activation mode is the time when you think about and decide on the change you want.
- Persistence mode is marked by feelings of determination, tenacity and continued effort, despite obstacles.
- Intensity mode is the energy, concentration and vigor required to push beyond any obstacles.
Activation mode is easiest as it requires more thinking than action while, persistence and intensity, are the actionable modes that require converting thoughts into meaningful actions. Worry not, these mindset shifts will help you.
Know ‘Your How and Why’
You have to know ‘Your How and Why’ that underpins your goal. To remain motivated until the end, your goal must be both important and meaningful to you. Ask yourself on a scale of 1-10
How important is this goal to me?
How meaningful is this goal to me?
Why is it important to me?
Why is it meaningful to me?
Compelling and strong personal answers to these questions will help to successfully underpin your motivation.
Make your time a priority
Time is our most valuable commodity yet we pay little attention to how we spend it. Reflect on your leisure versus recreation time. Leisure time is watching TV, scanning social media, or searching the web. While recreation (literally meaning to re-create) is time spent on activities that are not always enjoyable, but the stretch and challenge of these activities almost always makes you glad you did it. If you have more leisure than recreation time, it’s time to swap out some leisure time and commit to recreating yourself in the direction of your goal.
Once you understand ‘Your How and Why’, and make time your priority, start to educate yourself. Learn more about the topic and nourish your mind about the change you want to bring. Research books, podcasts, documentaries and articles. If you can, join a group or start a course that will help bolster your skills. Use your commute or recreation time to do this.
Get an Accountability Buddy
Typically, the first thing we do to stay motivated is to write down a goal. Great start but missing a vital factor – accountability. You must share your goal with somebody who is willing to follow-up just the right amount. The key here is to share your goal and commitment with somebody who is reliable, trustworthy, honest and willing to help you work towards your goal. Ask a friend, family member or colleague to check in with you on a set day by phone, text, email or in person.
Set Super Micro Goals
Your overall goal might be big. Maybe it’s to speak in public, move job or start a new company. That’s great, but to achieve it you must set the smallest daily super micro goals towards that end. It might be making a call, adding to your mood board, setting up a coffee, reading a single article or doing one small meaningful thing towards your bigger picture. Do it, record its completion and give yourself a clap on the back.
Overnight success is a myth
Nothing happens overnight and motivation has its dips and troughs. It takes three weeks to break a habit and three weeks to make a habit. Making meaningful change is a process, not an event and one that takes time. If you want to stay motivated accept that you will have your up’s and downs. Acknowledge the likelihood of failure but promise to evaluate and learn from it. Treat every day as a new one and even if yesterday wasn’t a great one remember that today can be. Each day commit to a new super micro goal that will move you further down the road in achieving your goal.
Good Luck Designing your Own Success
By Sinead Brady