Motivation is a common commodity when you’re heading to the beach or shopping for a new car. But some tasks are not enjoyable, and motivation can be challenging to find. Creating motivation is a skill, and there are several techniques that can be helpful. The ability to motivate yourself is among the most important skills you can have.
Try these tips when you need to boost your motivation:
- Keep your attention on the end result rather than the process of getting there. When you find yourself getting bogged down with a large project, remind yourself of the goal. It’s challenging to get started when it’s necessary to put in 100 hours of work or to lose 50 lbs. If your motivation is waning, focus on how great you’ll feel when the objective has been met.
- Schedule regular breaks. Working for 8 hours straight might seem daunting, but knowing that you can take a break in 60 minutes can free up your mind enough to focus intently for an hour. Approach your work 60 minutes at time and you’ll be done before you know it.
- Stand up and move around. Short period of intense exercise can improve creativity, sharpen the mind, and decrease stress. Find an activity appropriate for your environment.
- Give yourself rewards as milestones are reached. Think of a few self-indulgences that you consider motivating. Break your work into reasonable chunks and give yourself a small reward as the milestones are met.
- These rewards can be very small. A cup of coffee or a short break might be enough to get through a rough patch.
- Do whatever it takes to get started. It’s surprising how motivation can seemingly appear from nowhere if you can just take the first step. Waiting for inspiration to get started is a mistake. You’re likely to notice that the work wasn’t nearly as disagreeable as you thought. You’ll probably be impressed with your progress and begin to feel motivated.
- Whether it’s writing one sentence, making one phone call, or doing one pushup, do whatever it takes to get the ball rolling.
- Find inspiration through a song or video. YouTube is loaded with inspirational movie clips and presentations. Maybe there is a particular song that motivates you. A couple of minutes spent on this sort of activity can be well worth the time. Consider listening to a favorite song or watching a video on your break time.
- Avoid getting distracted and wasting hours. Five minutes is enough!
- Use a timer. A timer is a very effective way to focus the mind and get things done. Knowing that the seconds are ticking away is very motivating.
- Having a timer also eliminates the questions of deciding how much to do or when to stop and take a break. You stop when the timer stops.
- Make a list of the benefits you’ll receive upon completion. Will you finally have the money to pay all of your bills and take a trip? Will you be proud to show off your body at the beach? Can you realize your dream of gaining acceptance into graduate school?
- Keep the list handy and review it whenever your motivation is lacking.
Strive to further develop your ability to motivate yourself. Self-motivation is a powerful tool for creating a successful life. Remember that the most challenging task can be to take the first step. Get started and you’ll find that your motivation begins to grow!
Spice up your life by stimulating your natural sense of curiosity. Your daily activities can evoke just as much wonder as any story about Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings.
Studies show that we learn better when we’re in a state of heightened curiosity. In one experiment, test subjects who were interested in the answer to a trivia question found it easier to remember other information even when it was completely unrelated.
Take a look at the benefits of nurturing your curious side. An inquiring mind can open up new opportunities for you.
Benefits of Stimulating Your Natural Curiosity
- Feel more engaged. When you’re being led by curiosity, you tap into sources of intrinsic motivation. You enjoy your tasks for their own sake rather than plowing through them to reach an external reward. That provides more intense and lasting satisfaction.
- Develop wisdom. Curiosity encourages learning. You seek out facts and find ways to apply them to your own life.
- Strengthen your relationships. Taking a sincere interest in the welfare of others promotes empathy. You listen attentively when your child describes how they feel about their best friend moving away. You’re able to put yourself in their position and provide comfort and validation.
- Experience happiness. Brain scans show that curiosity activates the reward center in your brain. Cleaning out the attic becomes fun when you search for treasure in old storage boxes. You discover increased fulfillment as you have fun tackling one challenge after another.
Strategies for Stimulating Your Natural Curiosity
- Try new things. Make each day an adventure. Sign up for classes in scuba diving or gourmet cooking. Listen to a different radio station or take the scenic route on your drive home from the office.
- Read daily. Delve into subjects that fascinate you and pick up new interests by reading books. Visit your local library. Take a second look at the classics you read in high school to see if you appreciate them differently now.
- Attend cultural events. Look up art venues in your neighborhood or in cities you travel to for business. Check out the latest exhibitions or concerts.
- Study science. Maybe you stopped thinking about science once you graduated from college. Refresh your memory by registering for a biology course online. Browse the science section in a local bookstore. Find simple experiments you can share with your kids.
- Consult experts. Fuel your curiosity with inspiration from other curious minds. Contact a popular speaker you met at a conference and ask if you can interview them for your company blog. Chat with the employees at a hardware store to plan your next home improvement project.
- Ask questions. Let your boss know you care about your work. Ask why the company is opening a new office in Missouri or redesigning the website.
- Think analytically. Critical thinking can change the way you look at assignments that used to bore you, and enhance your performance. Figure out ways to clean the shower faster or simplify the steps for ordering supplies for your department.
- Play around. Let go of expectations and welcome surprises. Allow your mind to wander and free up your creativity.
- Travel the world. A change of scenery provides many reasons to be curious. Find out what the locals are eating for breakfast in Nova Scotia or listen to a jaguar roar in Costa Rica. If you run out of vacation days, camp out in your backyard to see what happens after dark.
Awaken your sense of curiosity. Satisfying your desire for knowledge will deepen your understanding of yourself and others and prepare you for greater success.
Success might not seem worth the stress, struggle, and disappointment. But success is quite simple, though not necessarily easy. Avoiding the mistakes that limit success is the best first step toward achieving success. Recognizing and avoiding these mistakes can provide a stepping-stone to new levels of achievement.
Avoid committing any of these success-limiting mistakes:
- Not having effective habits in place. Regardless of your definition of success, there are habits that will help to ensure its achievement and others that create barriers. Ask yourself if you’re currently living in a way that brings you closer to success each day. What habits do you need to demonstrate each day to guarantee success?
- Great successes take time. It’s the little things, done over a long period of time, that make the difference.
- A lack of clear and concise goals. If you don’t have a goal, how will you know if you’re successful? What is your target? Successful people have goals and review them regularly. Unsuccessful people aren’t sure what they want.
- A lack of a plan. Those that struggle often live by default. They don’t really have a plan and a direction. The result is living life reactively. They’re either being passive or putting out fires. Put a plan in place that moves your life in a positive direction.
- Mistaking busyness for productiveness. Mistaking 8 hours of activity for 8 hours of productivity is the result of flawed thinking. The Pareto Principle dictates that 20% of your possible options contribute to 80% of your success. Most people gravitate toward the easier, more comfortable activities that provide a limited return on your time.
- Being busy isn’t the same as making real progress. Choose the activities that have the greatest effect.
- A lack of consistency. Champions are consistent to the extreme. You might not be interested in planning out your day to the minute and living that same day over and over again, but success does require more consistency that the average person is willing to demonstrate. Spend time each day on reaching your goals.
- Not dealing with discomfort effectively. Progress requires new behaviors and new behaviors are inherently uncomfortable on some level. Comfort is only found in repetition, and repeating past behaviors keeps your life at a standstill. Successful people are able to deal with discomfort and move forward.
- Breathing exercises, prayer, meditation, and yoga are a few tools for moving past discomfort. Being uncomfortable doesn’t have to be a reason to not do something.
- Not learning from mistakes and failures. The most successful people are those that failed the most. It’s common to avoid failure, but this is a mistake. While failure is never the objective, it’s an expected part of attaining success. Your first attempt at anything is merely a starting point. Failure is the tool necessary to make improvement.
- Failure is an undesired result that allows you to make a better attempt next time. Constant improvement ultimately ends in success.
- Preoccupation with things that can’t be changed. There are a multitude of things in life that can’t be altered, particularly the past. Learn to let go and focus on the things you can alter.
Success can be elusive, but it’s much easier to find when you can avoid the most common mistakes. Avoiding mistakes is a pivotal part of success. Create a few goals and then create habits that support those goals. Deal with discomfort and learn from your mistakes. Success can be that simple.
For some people, being likeable is a gift. We all know someone that everyone just seems to like. Being likeable can make life easier and more enjoyable. It feels wonderful when people are happy to see us. Your social life is better and others are more willing to be helpful. You don’t have to be born likeable. It’s actually an easy skill to develop.
These characteristics are commonly found in highly likeable people:
- Be empathetic. The ability to understand another’s feelings and point of view is invaluable. It’s frustrating when others fail to understand what we’re thinking and feeling. Be the person that makes the time and effort to get to the heart of the matter.
- Be interesting. Only a weather buff wants to talk about the weather! People like to be fascinated and entertained. Boring others doesn’t result in getting more party invitations. The easiest way to have interesting conversations is to have an interesting life. Are you bored a lot of the time? If so, you’re probably boring others, too. Make your life a grand adventure!
- Focus on the positive. Who doesn’t like positive, happy people? Being negative and pessimistic becomes tiresome. The people around you are affected by your words, actions, and moods. Make others feel good and they’ll associate those feelings with you.
- Be present. A sure way to make someone feel insignificant is to fail to give them your full attention. Put away your phone and keep your eyes on the other person. Listen to what is being said. Anything else is rude and not appreciated.
- Keep your word. If others don’t trust you, it makes it difficult for them to like you. Being honest and reliable creates the kind of trust necessary to build and sustain meaningful relationships. Do what you say you’re going to do.
- Unless asked, keep your opinions to yourself. When people share their challenges, they already know what to do 90% of the time. They’re just looking for someone to listen and be sympathetic. Unsolicited advice is rarely welcome and can create feelings of resentment. Give advice only when requested.
- Remember names. We all feel a small bit of pride when others remember and use our names. It’s also a little insulting when they don’t, even though names are among the most challenging items to remember. People tend to remember in a visual format. It’s not easy to visualize a name.
- Do whatever is necessary to remember names and then use them in conversation. Those around you will appreciate it.
- Make others feel good about themselves. Many people assume that being more likeable is the result of being more impressive to others. However, it’s actually about making people feel more impressed with themselves.
- If you can make someone feel better about their life and who they are, you’ll have a friend for life.
- Build your confidence. Everyone likes to be around someone who’s confident. People that are nervous and uncomfortable tend to make others uncomfortable, too. Strive to find a place between arrogance and self-doubt. Do everything possible to feel good about yourself.
- Live a life that fills you with pride. Wear clothes that make you feel great. Be proud of your accomplishments and what you have to offer the world.
If you desire to be more likeable, you can develop the qualities that draw others to you. If you’re enjoyable and interesting to be around, you’ve already won half the battle. The other half consists of making others feel good about themselves. Even the most disagreeable people can learn to be very likeable.
One of the best ways to make life more enjoyable is to be well-liked by others!
Feeling stuck or frustrated with life often precedes the decision to make a personal transformation. Making a meaningful change is both exciting and distressing. Our brains are wired to make change uncomfortable and more challenging than it needs to be. Focusing on the most important aspects of personal change can make the process smoother and easier. The odds of success are greatly enhanced, too.
Include these essentials in your personal transformation process:
- Making a true decision might be the most powerful thing you can do. A true decision cuts off all other possibilities. Most of us fail to truly decide. We make weak decisions and fail to stick with them. The constant vacillation between multiple options is worse than making no decision at all.
- Narrow down your options to just a couple of choices and then pick one. After the careful consideration you’ve done in the narrowing process, one choice is probably as good as another when you only have a couple of options left. Picking a sub optimal
choice is also better than failing to make a choice.
- Create a deadline. Have you ever noticed how projects expand to fill the allotted time? If your boss gave you two weeks to complete a project, you’d probably be scrambling at the last minute to get it done.
- Choose a deadline that’s reasonable, not too stressful for you, but still aggressive. You can get more accomplished than you realize.
- The lack of a timetable ensures the transformation process will take much longer than necessary.
- Have an exciting vision. Ensure that you have a clear picture of how your personal transformation will positively impact your life. If that vision doesn’t fill you with excitement, you’re going to need a new vision for your future. Making a big change is challenging. Without a compelling expected future, it will be hard to persevere.
- Address your limiting beliefs. Limiting beliefs don’t directly limit your ability to transform. However, they can severely limit your ability to take action. If don’t believe you can succeed, you’ll never complete the hard work required to see a transformation.
- Make a list of all the beliefs you have about yourself and the world that could be limiting your progress. Address each of them one by one. Make a list of counterexamples to that belief. What is the disadvantage of continuing to accept that belief? What new belief could you install in its place?
- It’s challenging to find and eliminate all the limiting beliefs you hold, but doing so guarantees your ultimate success.
- Consider any experiences in your past that fill you with a sense of failure. These memories can often hold clues to your limiting beliefs.
- Measure your progress. Any significant transformation will take time. Weight is lost a little at a time. Skills are gained over time. Develop a way to track your progress and review it regularly. Seeing progress is motivating. It also lets you know where you stand. Enjoy your results and permit it to increase your enthusiasm.
Making a successful personal transformation is one of the quickest ways to positively change your life.
Create a compelling future and be determined that you’ll reach it by your deadline. Work on your limiting beliefs. They are the greatest impediment to your ability to change. Finally, measure your progress along your journey. The feedback and motivation it provides are invaluable.