There are times when finding a reason to get out of bed in the morning can be incredibly difficult. When those goals you had from years ago are still not within your reach, it can seem like nothing you do is making a real difference and all you’re really doing is going through the motions. It is never too late, however. Success is not accessible only to a select group of people. You still have time to turn things around and get back on track, and if you need some motivation, then you’ve come to the right corner of the internet.
In this article, I will share with you 10 simple things you can do to more effectively motivate yourself so that you can still end up succeeding in the long run.
1. Set the Right Kinds of Goals for Yourself
Bobby Hoffman Ph. D., talked about the different ways we measure our performances. He pointed out that some people evaluate their performances based on societal standards, while others stack their accomplishments up against what their friends and family members have done, and then there are the people who look at what they’ve done and compare it to their previous work.
Hoffman notes that when we come up short after making social comparisons, we tend to become anxious. Eventually, that will lead to losing motivation. To avoid that, he suggests setting “significant, attainable goals based on standards achievable with reasonable and sustained effort.” Basically, we need to be more pragmatic when setting our goals. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t aim high. It just means that we have to set goals that we have a real shot at accomplishing even if doing so takes a lot of time and hard work.
2. Set Short and Long-Term Goals
Now that you better understand the importance of setting attainable goals, it’s time to come up with the different things you want to achieve, but you also have to be mindful of integrating variety into our approach. More specifically, you need to have both short and long-term goals. The short term goals are there to serve almost like checkpoints. They are meant to fuel you with more desire to continue on the path you’ve chosen as you continue to pursue your greatest dreams. Without those short-term goals, it will seem as though you are perpetually far off from achieving anything significant.
Your long-term goals are there to remind you of why you started in the first place. The long-term goals will help add meaning to your actions. It’s easier to continue working hard when you understand on a fundamental level that the efforts you’re making are in service of greater goals that will benefit you for the rest of your life.
3. Write All of Your Goals Down
Unless you are among those folks with a photographic memory, it will probably be easier for you to remember something long-term if you write it down. So bust out the pen and paper and begin writing down those goals of yours. Put everything down in writing and keep that notebook or journal in a place you can access easily.
On those particularly trying days, reach for that notebook or journal and begin reading what you wrote previously. Every now and then, it’s helpful to be reminded of what you are working towards. Those reminders will help prevent you from veering off your chosen path.
4. Don’t Forget to Reward Yourself
Rewards account for 75 percent of why people get motivated to accomplish something. That’s not at all surprising. Professional athletes devote their time to training and practicing because they want to win championships and land big contracts. Recording artists spend years tweaking their stage personas and writing songs because they want to eventually make it big and hear themselves singing on the radio.
Even little kids will be more motivated to complete their chores if you promise to give them a treat afterwards. With all that in mind, you should also make it a point to reward yourself whenever you accomplish something of significance. Rewards can come in all forms. Maybe you want to get some new Camaro parts before taking your favorite car out for a spin or perhaps you want to get those gorgeous shoes that caught your eye a while back. The bottom line is that rewarding yourself is a good idea and it will help encourage you to keep going in pursuit of more rewards.
5. Enjoy What You Have Earned
To really drive home how important it is to stay motivated and committed your goals, you should take the opportunity to experience what it’s like when you set out to accomplish something and get it done. So, when you are driving that Camaro around, give yourself the permission to lose yourself in the moment and just sense on a fundamental how much fun you are having.
A reward is useless if you don’t actually enjoy it.
By deciding against making time to savor what you have earned, you are essentially diminishing the value of the rewards you are giving yourself. Continuing to do that may result in you failing to gain any kind of appreciation for any reward you receive.
6. Let Your Routine Work for You
As a creature habit of myself, I rely on my routine to give my everyday life some semblance of structure. It’s comforting in a way. Your routine protects you from something unexpected. You can prepare yourself better for the day ahead because you know what is coming. Of course, the problem with having a routine is that it can be too monotonous. Variety is the spice of life and even people set in their ways could benefit from experiencing something different every now and then.
Create different routines – ones you can rotate in and out of to keep things fresh. You’re bound to experience something new that way. Also, another benefit of utilizing many routines is that you will be able to identify the most efficient one and use that more moving forward.
7. Feel Free to Spend Some Time on Yourself
Continuously working towards your goals can get tiring after a while. You’re still human and no one is immune from fatigue. The point at which you start feeling exhausted is a critical time. Failing to take care of yourself during that time leaves you vulnerable to breaking down and becoming demotivated
Take some time to recharge yourself. Go on vacation if you have the money to do so or just stay at home and spend the next few days having fun and not worrying about anything else. By the time your break is over, you can return to your path feeling refreshed and with the energy needed to keep going.
8. Ask for Some Honest Feedback
It’s not wise to constantly worry about what people think of you, but it is a good move to ask them what they honestly see in the work you’ve already completed. Go to a mentor or a trusted colleague and ask them to be frank with you. Ask them the tough questions. “Have I improved at work?” “Am I becoming a better parent?” “Do you think I’m smarter with my money?” You can probably answer those questions yourself, but you may be biased one way or another. Someone from the outside looking in will be able to provide a more objective opinion. Use that to make adjustments if needed and press on.
9. Acknowledge the Mistakes and Excuses You Have Made
Let’s say that the objective observer you asked did not provide a positive opinion. What do you need to do then? Obviously, you’re not doing something right, so it’s time to recognize that.
It’s human nature to make mistakes, but repeating those errors is inexcusable. Understand what you’re doing wrong and take the steps needed to address it. Instead of continuing to use excuses to conveniently explain yourself out of a difficult situation, acknowledge them head on and try your best to not lean on them again in the future.
10. Proceed at Your Own Pace
In the first item in this article, we talked about how counterproductive it can be for you to compare what you’ve done to the accomplishments already claimed by your friends and family members. It is so easy to get sucked into the trap of feeling inadequate simply because you’re not as successful as someone you know. It can almost feel as if you’re in a race and you’ve already fallen behind by a wide margin.
Before you proceed to wallow in self-pity, it’s important to remember that the people you know being successful has little to no bearing on your progress. Is your best friend from college now a practicing doctor? That’s great! Congratulate your friend, but also remember that success is not something that runs out once enough people you know have claimed it. Continue focusing on what you need to do. Open up that notebook and look at your goals again. Chances are that you’ve already checked off some goals of yours already.
Ultimately, all that truly matters is that you’re making progress on your path.