Everywhere you go, you hear people talk about motivation. How they are going to lose weight, quit smoking, going to eat healthy. And few weeks into their new resolutions, what do most people end up saying, ‘I don’t get enough time. I don’t feel motivated enough.’
I am sure there is no dearth of motivational videos, speakers, quotes in this age of Youtube and social media, and unfortunately, most of us rely on motivation from others which can feel inspiring for the time being, but by doing so we set ourselves up for failure.
I am not trying to say that motivation is not important, but neither is it enough to succeed. You may feel like on top of the world after watching a motivational video. But what are you going to do when you are not motivated? It is impossible to feel fired up every moment of the day. Right?
Here are the reasons why motivation just does not size up when you want more out of your life than regular stuff:
Without Action, Motivation Means Zilch
Name one of your short-term goals. It could be losing weight, getting a promotion, or buying a new car. For each of them, you need to know why you are doing it and how you are going to do it.
That means you need to create a plan and feel motivated every single day to see it through. Now motivation is the easier part. Your friends will tell you that ‘It’s good that you have made a start. Carry on.’
Your family will support you. This will impel you to take your goals seriously, but over weeks these kind words and encouragement’s effect will dwindle. Lack of focus might face you again and tease you for your weak will power.
The point is, motivation without execution will lead you nowhere but consistent action will.
And there will be times when your life circumstances will make it even harder to stay focused.
How wonderful the lives of famous people look! But we usually fail to look at the struggles, dedication, and hard work behind their success and are easily enamored by their accomplishments.
It is quite common to associate luck or privileged background to somebody’s success. There are several stories, more in this age of social media, where people from humble backgrounds have worked real hard and achieved their version of success. They continue to stay motivated and continue to take action. There is a lot we can learn from them.
It’s Not Connected to Your Purpose
Purpose – the reason for which something is done or created or for which something exists.
What is your purpose? I know there are no easy answers. But when you know what your purpose is, decide to pursue it relentlessly.
But often, rather than searching for what we want to do, we do the easy thing – become inspired by other people’s stories. I am pretty sure that the limelight that many famous sports stars or celebrities garner, prompts us to do something with our lives, get out of the daily rut which is not taking us anywhere near where we want to be.
It happens with all of us. But we need to remind ourselves that the greatest push comes from within. When we know what we are, what we are supposed to do with our lives, that the energy will begin to flow seamlessly within you and you will not need any sort of outside motivation. That day, that moment you will feel that sense of calm and you will stop seeking any artificial assurance from anyone.
You may not even realize it now, but years later, you will see that your zest for life and your higher purpose helped you become who you wanted to be. Continue to operate based on a strong belief and stay positive.
Find an Accountability Friend
When do we perform better? When we know somebody will call us out if we don’t show up or when we know nobody is really looking and we can take it easy?
Undoubtedly when somebody is expecting us to show up. Someone with whom we work towards a specific goal can be our accountability friend. Somebody at work, a neighbor, or a family member.
So, let’s say you are looking to learn how to play a musical instrument or go for a morning run on weekends.
Now that you have decided to work on your goal, you let your buddy know your schedule. If both have decided to meet at 6 in the morning to go for a run, you will feel a kind of subtle pressure to show up because you don’t want to let the other person down. You both can push each other to try harder and improve. Plus your self-respect will not let you give up that easily and saying ‘No’ won’t be so easy now.
If you can’t find someone with similar goals, try searching the internet. There are groups and communities online where you can find people with similar interests or goals.
Maintain a Success Journal
We are busy and our to-do lists are getting longer. And how does it make us feel? Anxious and unproductive. That something is amiss; our desires, our needs are not being attended to. The gap between who you are and who you want to be seems to be widening. You are mentally exhausted and unhappy. If I were to suggest starting a success journal, you may feel like saying ‘What a waste of time.’ It is not, so start anyway. A small notebook where you jot down what you have accomplished on a given day. You could say like a daily planner. It will help you declutter, think objectively, and filter information overwhelm.
We often underplay things we achieve on a daily basis. Not really our fault that we forget to look at them because, generally, we are jumping from one thing to another. But in this process, we do get a step closer to do what we want to do, though it may seem too little.
So, keep an eye on your daily, little accomplishments and feel proud of them. Before going to bed, see what you ticked off your to-do list and which tasks still remain open. This will give you a sense of achievement and also keep your motivation high.
Remember that motivation and action go hand in hand when it comes to reaching your dreams. Why not call it ‘Motivaction’?
So, the next time you are brimming with motivation, don’t forget to follow it up with action.
Hoping that you get closer to your dreams, one step at a time.