Motivation is really a fickle thing. We’ve all heard it and we all know that it’s true. No secret there. The truth is, motivation isn’t going to be there every day. Sometimes it’s hard not to think that something is wrong with us for lacking passion or motivation daily. However, it’s normal and it’s actually unrealistic to wish we had that. It would be more beneficial to our well-being to retrain our brain and think of it in a new light.
Be aware of your thoughts
How often have you heard “think about your thoughts”? Was it possibly confusing to you? Or maybe it just sounds cliche and you’re not about that. It’s like one of those never ending quotes that annoyingly positive people say.
Thinking about your thoughts can help in a few ways:
– With awareness of how you react to certain situations
– With awareness of your actions and the initial response that you have with anything that arises in your life
– With awareness of the way certain things make you feel and why it makes you feel that way
Before we can make any real change in life, we must first figure out what it is that we should change and why it would make a difference. Makes sense, right? How can you ever change something that you don’t even realize is happening?
Change your thoughts
When it comes to motivating yourself for something (a job, a health routine, heck even asking someone out), your initial thoughts might be…
“I’m not good enough.”
“Why would they want me?”
“Will they like me?”
“I’ve been rejected one too many times.”
“I always quit, why try again?”
“That didn’t work out for me before.”
“I’ll be so embarrassed if it doesn’t work out.”
See what you’re doing there? You’re setting your expectations low for yourself AKA shutting it down before you give yourself any chance.
You aren’t lacking motivation, drive, or passion.
You’re holding onto limiting beliefs and thoughts that you’ve carried around for so long that you believe them. However, they aren’t true. Now, you can be aware of your initial thoughts and reactions to opportunities. Ask yourself WHY you feel them and why you tend to believe them.
Once you’ve taken a hard look into those questions and have figured out the answers, you can begin to see how silly they are, or how hard you are on yourself for no reason.
You can begin to see that you have been letting thoughts of doubt and fear hold you back in life. You can now begin to realize that it wasn’t something you lacked (motivation, special powers) that you believed others had and you didn’t. In fact, you have absolutely everything you need to make a move, to push yourself, to reach after your goals, whatever they are.
As soon as you can be aware of those negative thoughts and how much they have held you back, you can practice shutting them down.
“I won’t believe that this time. I deserve a chance. I’m going to do great. I will make it happen.”
It may feel foreign and awkward at first but eventually, these thoughts won’t need to be forced, they won’t be a second thought… they will become your initial reaction.
Make a specific plan of action
Now that you know you can in fact do whatever the task may be, you must set a plan. It’s hard to keep any motivation going if you don’t know what steps you are going to take.
Revisit your action plan weekly and make to-do list
This not only helps you to keep short term goals (breaking it down in small steps so that you do not get overwhelmed with the bigger picture/goal). You are forcing yourself to recharge weekly and work intentionally. The weekly “refocus” time will remind you of what you’re doing and why.
When you sit down to make those small goals and how you plan to hit them, you regain a sense of focus and purpose. Getting really clear on steps you’d need to take to make the goals happen is important in keeping focused on the tasks at hand.
Remind yourself of the bigger why
People tend to think up “whys” or reasons for their goals that aren’t very significant in their life. Example: “I need to lose weight so I can fit into that dress or look good at so & so’s wedding” isn’t likely enough to keep you going.
“I want to live comfortably without financial troubles with my family.”
“I want to give back to my parents for all they’ve done for me.”
“I want to stop feeling like this about myself.”
These are all much deeper, more significant, and much more meaningful reminders of why you are working toward the goals that you are.
When it comes down to it, you will be able to push yourself through your steps because you have learned that the secret isn’t actually motivation at all… the secret is believing in yourself and not letting anyone (including yourself) make you feel otherwise.