Feeling STUCK? | 5 ways to fire up your motivation
One of the greatest challenges for me during this past year has been motivating myself.
Obviously, the pandemic, living the same day over and over again and Zoom fatigue are all real but I am pretty sure this isn’t the only reason I am lacking motivation. As the pandemic gets under control, I urn to be out and about again and wonder, will I have more motivation? If so, why? This got me thinking perhaps I could look at this as an opportunity to reflect. What was my motivation pre covid, why and what would I like it to be going forward? Am I pursuing activities and accomplishments in the hopes of an external reward, or do I find the endeavour itself very rewarding?
As you know, many of us have been hard wired to seek external validation, from being told we are good kids, to getting good grades, winning awards, placing in sporting events, and we get accolades for these comparative accomplishments. I am not suggesting these are not valid achievements or worthy goals however it’s my experience that we fuse validation and motivation to the extent that external validation becomes inextricably linked to our motivation. Sometimes (lots of the time) this misleads us, it pulls us in directions we should not be going. It is also a bottomless pit, an insatiable beast! We can’t get enough and often we don’t believe the validating comments anyway, it is a vicious circle …we need more, and more. Are we pursuing endeavors for accolades? Do they align with our own values and our purpose? Do we want to jump out of bed and get to these things because we are excited? If not check out my tips below.
Here are 5 tips to help you identify this:
- Take stock of whose opinion really matters This can be so liberating and it will support you to manage your time better. Why spend time pleasing people whom you don’t really care about or even really know? Make a list of those you really care about, if they don’t make the list DON’T TRY TO PLEASE THEM
- Track your energy. When do you feel most excited, most energized? We all have peaks and valleys during the day (I love first thing in the morning and get a big burst of energy around so if I am going to try something new it should be at a time when I am feeling at my best, figure out what is your “best time”
- Journal your accomplishments. Don’t wait for others to award you with their praise, praise yourself and then toot your own horn! Write everything down and when you’re feeling down READ IT!
- Stop doing sh#@ you don’t like. We all have obligations, but we owe it to ourselves to keep this to a minimum. We always have a choice. When we feel “put upon” energy depletes and our internal dialog is bad. Pay attention to this.
- Habits Habits Habits Revisit or form some clusters of habits. This is a great way to build on your intrinsic motivation. Who doesn’t feel proud of themselves for accomplishing a few great things in the day.(I start with making my bed. I love the look of it, drink water, again I love seeing my empty water bottle and think Yeah me I did something good for my body, get some fresh air). It is an easy way to start your day off on a positive note and it is something just for you.
We must start somewhere. Like everything there is a first step. Start there, start small and build on your plan. Science has our back on this as well. Research shows when we shift our mindset from external motivators (extrinsic) to internal motivators (intrinsic), we’re far more likely to achieve our goals and research also suggests we might be healthier and happier for it.
Working with a coach is a great way to identify your purpose and values, supporting you to make the best decisions for you and build up your engine of intrinsic motivation!