“Of course motivation is not permanent. But then, neither is bathing; but it is something you should do on a regular basis.” ― Zig Ziglar
This is one of the first ever motivational quotes I can recall reading and hearing when I first started taking an interest in personal development and self-improvement as a younger man. It is a well known notion these days. The inimitable Zig Ziglar suggesting that just as you choose to shower and take a bath on a regular basis, so you need to renew and tend to your motivation on a regular basis.
With my coaching clients, my therapy clients and my mentoring clients, as well as students that train with my college, I encounter a lot of people that are experiencing major ups and downs with their roller coaster of motivation levels and I spend plenty of time showing them how to manage it and elevate it through a variety of very practical skills and approaches. I recommend formulating such approaches in a way that they form a daily motivational system.
Here then, I’ve written about a number of ways to stay motivated and keep a positive attitude in life. You’ll notice these are all ways of creating internal motivation. That is, we can dream of having things beyond ourselves or relying on external reasons (such as winning the lottery triple rollover) to fuel our motivation, but when we learn how to motivate ourselves, we derive so much more benefit and enjoyment. We also develop self-efficacy, something I rabbit on about here incessantly.
Learn more about self-efficacy:
Self-Efficacy for Runners
Ok, so to develop your self-motivational skills, just regularly do the following:
1. Carry Out A Motivation Review:
The simplest way to carry out a motivation review, is to ask yourself Cartesian logic questions. Follow this simple formula:
Consider a main goal or desired outcome you wish to achieve in your life and that you’d like to keep motivated about. With that in mind, ask yourself:
– What would happen if I achieved that?
– What wouldn’t happen if I achieved that?
– What would happen if I didn’t achieve that?
– What wouldn’t happen if I didn’t achieve that?
Asking yourself these questions in relation to the goal you have for yourself will give you a great idea of what will happen when you do or do not achieve that thing. These are your motivations.
Keep a list of all those reasons with you in your wallet upon a flash card, or pinned up on your computer screen or anywhere else that you’ll regularly get to read them to yourself and remind yourself of.
2. Stay Grounded – Meditate:
This may sound counter-intuitive initially, yet taking time to meditate and connect with yourself and the world around you helps you stay grounded physically, emotionally and psychologically. You’re able to calm your mind and your emotions so you can better focus on tasks to be completed, and you can consciously recharge whenever you are feeling drained. One of the most motivating things you can do is to rest and renew yourself at regular intervals.
Meditation is also a great opportunity to gain guidance and insight about various situations in life. By creating the calmness and peacefulness of mind, you get to set your creativity on solutions for matters you are dealing with.
3. Give Yourself Effective Pep Talks:
That’s right; you need to talk to yourself!
There are many ways you can learn how to be positive in the face of negativity, this article will give you a whole host of ideas.
Give yourself a pep talk!
While on one end of the spectrum we can be our own worst critics, on the other end, we can also be our greatest cheerleaders and motivators. While it’s good to be objective about the quality of your work, remember to take time to polarise your mind toward the positive and productive self-bias whenever possible and appropriate. Talk yourself through the tough times with honest, but positive reinforcement, and make sure you always end with, “It’s alright, and I just have to keep going.”
If you don’t make sure you believe in you, how can you make anyone else believe in you?
Here is a great self-hypnosis technique to help you get driven, inspired and energised by communicating with yourself effectively.
4. Exercise and Physical Activity:
From yoga to long walks to running, various forms of exercise will keep you energised, refreshed, and motivated. A physical work-out doesn’t only help you reduce your weight and tone muscle, it also creates an active meditation period that is refreshing and enlightening.
Consciously going into your exercise routine with contemplation in mind will make your work-out double in productivity. If something that upsets you comes to the mind, you can push a little harder and use that energy to fuel your work-out. A long walk or run can be used as the time to have an inner conversation and find answers to the tough questions. Alternatively, it can be used to simply reduce stress and enhance motivation as a natural by-product to exercising; the release of feel-good chemicals in the brain.
Exercise doesn’t stop with the body; make sure you exercise your mind as well. Reading and learning new things not only keeps the mind active outside of business and life events, but it also gives you an opportunity to gain new knowledge that can improve your business and your life. Sometimes simply having a new insight or approach to life can excite and motivate.
You may also enjoy reading about how to exercise your brain and give it a workout here.
5. Create a Support Group:
Pursuing a dream can be a tough journey. Even after removing negativity from your life and establishing a motivational routine, you can still get frustrated. So, it is often invaluable to have a support group: one or more like minded people who can support and motivate each other through the good and bad times. People you can share your triumphs and failures with, knowing that they will be genuinely happy for you and be there for you. Whether it is family, friends, a significant other, mentors, or social media friends, this is incredibly important. Feeling completely alone or having the wrong people around you can be devastating to our motivation.
Be aware of those who drain you of motivation too. You might benefit from choosing to spend time away from these toxic people. They can weigh you down.
6. Music and Movement:
Music has an amazing power that can lift us greatly.
Listen to your favourite, uplifting music. Create a playlist on your music player that has all the music you love listening to that makes you feel motivated, inspired and uplifted. Then play that soundtrack first thing in the morning and at regular intervals in your day to give yourself a good lift and a strong shot of motivation.
Consider moving your body when listening to music too. Either dance, or walk, or jog on the spot, or jump up and down. Even better if you do it in a way that is totally care-free! If ever you needed an excuse to go and do some interpretive dance, this is it!
7. Motivational Quotes:
Find your favourite and most compelling motivational quotes and have them listed and available for you to read each day.
I wrote here about my own top ten motivational quotes and why.
You can read your favourite motivational quotes at the same time as listening to music, thus combining the previous two points.
I wrote about how to do this in more detail here: Wake Up and Be Awesome.
8. The Vision:
More than just effective goal setting, have a vision for how you wish your life to be. Understand the reasons for that vision and let it be a chance to be really aware of who you are and where you are at currently. When you have a clearly defined vision, you make life goals and outcomes a mission you are motivated to pursue. Revisit your vision regularly and let it lift you.
Believe in that vision too, and if you need help to continue to believe in yourself…
9. Celebrate Your Progress:
When setting a goal, we often lose sight of the small steps we have taken to get closer to that goal, causing us to get down on ourselves. Remember, huge goals do not happen by the flick of a switch. There are MANY STEPS that must be taken to reach that goal. So, instead of focusing solely on how far you have to go, celebrate how far you’ve come! Count the steps you’ve taken so far and be proud of yourself. Your journey, your progress, will still inspire you and build more self-efficacy.
You might like to be aware of milestones (shorter term goals) along the way and celebrate reaching those along the way towards your longer term goals.
If you find it hard to motivate yourself on a regular basis, you may want to try listening to podcasts or watching videos of motivational speakers. Continue to expose yourself to motivating peers, friends and colleagues as well as motivational speakers that will help advance your attitude regularly.
There is so much you can do to keep your motivation levels up, though do keep it real and understand that life does have ups and downs. Accept where you are and employ these kinds of approaches to help you lift your spirits and keep motivated and ideally enjoying your ongoing experience of life more.
Have some of themes here resonated with you? Then have a read of these pages:
1. Do you need help or support in a particular area of your life?
Coaching with Adam Eason Or Hypnotherapy with Adam Eason
2. Would you like a satisfying and meaningful career as a hypnotherapist helping others? Are you a hypnotherapist looking for stimulating and career enhancing continued professional development and advanced studies?
Adam Eason’s Anglo European training college.
3. Are you a hypnotherapist looking to fulfil your ambitions or advance your career?
Hypnotherapist Mentoring with Adam Eason.
Likewise, if you’d like to learn more about self-hypnosis, understand the evidence based principles of it from a scientific perspective and learn how to apply it to many areas of your life while having fun and in a safe environment and have the opportunity to test everything you learn, then come and join me for my one day seminar which does all that and more, have a read here: The Science of Self-Hypnosis Seminar.