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It can be tough to maintain your motivation when it comes to getting things accomplished. Yet, not much can be done without motivation. Small, simple things, like brushing your teeth, require small amounts of motivation. Bigger tasks require more motivation to complete.
A key part of maintaining motivation is making sure your goals are right. Because goal setting is one of the most psychological tools we have, it’s important to use it to our advantage. Setting goals that are just right – not too hard and not too easy – will make us work most efficiently to achieve them. Goals that are too hard will fall by the wayside, and you won’t feel proud of accomplishing goals that are too easy.
So how do you manufacture motivation?
Luckily, there are ways to motivate yourself to do most anything if you just put your mind to it. Here are some ways to motivate yourself and complete more of your goals.
Learn to motivate yourself and you’ll accomplish more:
Use pain. What damage will be done if you fail to complete a particular task? It could just be the inconvenience of having an extra task on your to-do list the following day. Or someone could drop by and see how filthy your home is. Look at the things you don’t want to happen. Will it bother you if it does?
List several good reasons why failing to take action would be painful for you.
Use pleasure. You’ll be able to take a pretty great vacation next year because you’ve been saving $25 each week, which has been tough. Remind yourself of all the benefits you’ll receive. Keep a long list of things that will help keep the fire burning inside to successfully deal with the things you don’t want to do. Think of the details. The more little things you can think of, the better.
Visualize your anticipated future that you expect to enjoy from getting your tasks completed. Rehearse your successes in your mind by creating an image that motivates you to take the next step in your future enthusiastically.
Set short-term goals. You really can’t stay motivated much longer than 8-10 weeks. So, on a year-long goal, you’ll run out of steam before you successfully accomplish the goal. It’s much easier to accomplish short-term goals than it is long-term goals.
Aim for two months. Break larger goals that will take an extended time into smaller goals that can be completed within two months.
Make the task more enjoyable. Give yourself something to look forward to. What if you listened to your favourite album while you raked the leaves? That would make it less dreadful to do. Or you could invite a few friends over for a barbeque and ask them to bring a rake. Many hands make light work.
Ask yourself, “How can I make this task as enjoyable as possible?” and then listen to the answers you receive.
Give yourself a reward. Apply the idea of rewards to keep your motivation high enough to reach your goals. You wouldn’t go to work each day if you didn’t get paid. That reward is what keeps you coming back day after day. Think of several things you really enjoy and use them as motivation.
The simple act of feeling proud and pleased with your progress can be a reward in itself. Those that struggle with motivation are often hard on themselves. Be happy with each step of your progress and you can expect to enjoy continued progress in the future.
Take a deep breath. An over-stimulated mind will drain your motivation faster than you can say “Quiet!” Get clear on what you’re trying to accomplish and focus on the steps needed to get there. Deal with one task at a time. Clarity and meditation go hand in hand.
Keep your brain focused on your current task. Learn to meditate to focus your thoughts more effectively. Meditation helps create new thought pathways in your brain.
Include another person for accountability. Tasks aren’t as hard when you know someone else is waiting for you. Going to the gym each day can be tough. But it’s hard to stay home when you know your workout partner is waiting for you. The presence of others can increase their level of commitment. Reach out to a friend.
The only other way to accomplish goals is through willpower, which is much harder to sustain that motivation. Learning to control your motivation is part of learning to control yourself. You can accomplish almost anything once you learn how to manipulate your level of motivation. Even the most challenging tasks become manageable.
Nature lover. Author. Reader. Marsanne Petty has been practicing living her own authentic life and shares her methods for achieving happiness. She lives in the great outdoors with her husband and children, and their two lovable dogs.