Motivation is the beginning of every action which means being moved to act. A person will experience success, failure, or become a leader depending on his motivation. Knowing what keeps you motivated will have a positive impact on your life. Actions based on motivation lead you to a healthy and happy life.
Method 1 of 4: Setting and Achieving Goals
Step 1. Write down the goals you want to achieve
To feel motivated, you must have a goal. Goals that are ambiguous and without targets are usually less motivating and impossible to achieve. You will be more motivated if you have clear goals and are supported by intermediate goals that are easier to achieve. Make sure you define a goal that is useful and able to support the achievement of the main goal. Otherwise, your motivation will be extinguished halfway.
- For example, if you want to motivate yourself to be accepted into law school, remember that this is the main goal. In order to maintain motivation, it's a good idea to break down the goal into steps (actions you can take) and tasks (small specific things) so that the main goal can be achieved.
- So, if your goal is to be accepted into law school, the steps you have to take are to choose the right university, apply, and take the new student admissions test.
- Describe the steps of “taking the new student admissions test” into several tasks, for example: finding a book of practice questions, finding information about the entrance test fee, and the location of the entrance test. Tasks that you need to do in order to choose the right university, for example finding out the criteria that should be used as a reference in choosing a university (for example: are location and prestige an important consideration for you?).
Step 2. Set priorities
Consider a goal that you consider most important that you are highly motivated to achieve immediately? Think about whether the goal is realistic enough that you can achieve it with the time, funds, and other available resources. Sometimes, there are goals that must be achieved first in order for other goals to be achieved (eg mutually supportive goals). Focusing on improving one or two things keeps you from feeling overwhelmed so you can maintain your motivation. You tend to give up more easily if your goals feel difficult to achieve.
- Often times, you need to prepare yourself in advance to achieve certain goals before committing to others. Since you have to take an admissions test, you must have started studying before enrolling in law school.
- Set goals that are easy to achieve so that the success you achieve is able to maintain motivation as long as you struggle to achieve the main goal.
Step 3. Write down the steps you can take
After determining the priority of the most important goals, determine two or three other important goals and then prepare a daily to-do list that will support the gradual achievement of the main goals. For example, the step you have to take is to study chapter 1 of the practice book about the entrance test.
- Do not try to pursue several goals at once because you will run out of time, reducing motivation and productivity.
- Break each step down into easy-to-do tasks. Tasks are small activities that you can do to achieve a goal. For example, your task is to practice working on questions from the entrance test preparation book for 1 hour per day or study 10 pages per day.
Step 4. Complete the steps you need to do
To stay motivated, make a daily to-do list in writing and then cross it out when you're done. Besides being fun, this method can remind you that you are productive in studying. Repeat this method until all tasks are completed properly and then continue with the other steps.
For example, each time you finish studying, cross your study assignments off your daily to-do list. When you finish one chapter, study the next chapter
Method 2 of 4: Changing Your Thinking
Step 1. Think positively.
Negative feelings make your goals feel difficult to achieve because they seem too high. With a positive mindset, the same goal feels easier to achieve. In some studies, people who were intentionally conditioned to feel sad overestimated the steepness of the hill compared to people who were in a happy or affectively neutral state.
- If negative thoughts appear, stop what you are thinking or turn them into positive thoughts. For example, if you want to be motivated to write, but you think negative thoughts, "I will never finish my writing because my book is only until chapter 3 in a year", replace it with positive thoughts, for example, "Right now I only wrote until chapter 3. keep writing, soon until chapter 6 and finally finished!”
- Smile, even if you don't want to smile. Research into the facial expression feedback hypothesis suggests that there is a two-way relationship between facial muscles and a person's feelings. Usually we smile because we feel happy, smiling also makes us feel happy.
- Listen to fun music. Pleasant music forms a mindset that triggers feelings of happiness and increases positive feelings.
Step 2. Cultivate a sense of pride
If you want to stay motivated and ever reach your goals, cultivate a sense of pride in your accomplishments. Even if you haven't achieved what you're currently aiming for, there must be some success you've already achieved. Feeling proud of yourself keeps you motivated, especially if you're having a hard time.
- For example, remember that you once helped someone achieve their goals by offering advice or help.
- Don't be shy about admitting what you've accomplished. You've worked hard and praise from others will strengthen your desire to keep trying.
- To feel proud, think about how you yourself were involved in creating a positive impact. If you join a charitable organization to tackle the problem of hunger, think about your specific role in the project and the positive impact you have created. For example, if you want to wash dishes so that more people can use them, think about the steps needed to get people to eat voraciously on clean plates.
Step 3. Keep your spirits up
Maintaining a passion for achieving your goals will increase your energy and motivation. A strong desire to achieve your goals makes you more persistent in fighting when facing difficulties and wanting to give up.
- If you lose your zest and motivation, remember that what keeps you motivated is something that matters to you and sparks the passion that you want to achieve. Ask yourself what positive impact you and others have after your goal is achieved.
- For example, you might want to go to law school so you can help others who need help or achieve financial freedom. Imagine why you are pursuing your dream of becoming a lawyer and use that vision to fuel your spirits!
- Maybe you're not passionate about a certain goal, but you're still trying for other reasons. For example, if you want to lose weight to be healthier or look thinner, but that desire doesn't excite you, remember the end goal. Think about why you want to live a healthy life, for example because it makes you feel more comfortable, live longer, and feel proud of your success.
Step 4. Cultivate intrinsic motivation
Try to put more value on learning and achieving your goals rather than focusing on external things, such as thinking about what other people will think if you achieve your goals.
- This is what is called intrinsic motivation which keeps you motivated without depending on others because you only need the power of your own mind and will to trigger the motivation that will spur you to achieve your goals.
- In order to develop intrinsic motivation, think about what you love about your goals. Imagine that intrinsic motivation stimulates you mentally and puts you in control to achieve your goals. If you believe that your goals are achievable, it feels like everything is in your hands and this is what fosters intrinsic motivation.
Step 5. Fight fear
Don't worry too much about failure. Many people think of “failure” assuming that failure is permanent and saying something about you, but this is not true. Accept the idea that you can learn from mistakes.
- After all, success is often achieved after experiencing failure. Maybe your goal has not been achieved after trying 10, 20, or even 50 times. Remembering that failure is usually a part of success will keep you motivated to start trying and will stick with it in the face of adversity.
- Think of the worst-case scenario if you fail to reach your goal. Failure isn't necessarily bad, so what are you afraid of? Usually, people overestimate how bad they would feel if they failed. Keep that message in mind if you're struggling to stay motivated by thinking about the effort, not the success.
Method 3 of 4: Motivate Yourself
Step 1. Remember the success you've had
To feel motivated, remember a time when you were able to execute your plan well and achieve your goals. Also remember the results you have achieved so far and how you felt when you were successful.
For example, if you want to motivate yourself to exercise regularly, think back to a time when you felt really energized, exercised, and felt really good afterward. Reimagining how you felt during your workout and how you felt afterwards can spur you on towards goals that are worth striving for, such as getting fitter
Step 2. Just do it
Even if you're not motivated, just do it. Sometimes, we think too much and imagine things that are worse than they really are. This is called affective forecasting and we tend to be very bad at it. Once you've started, you'll usually find that things aren't so bad.
For example, if you want to build motivation to write a book, turn on your laptop and start typing. Tell yourself that you want to type for 5 minutes and will stop if you are not motivated. By tricking yourself into writing, you'll feel motivated and keep writing after 5 minutes
Step 3. Eliminate distractions
The war against motivation occurs because usually there are more interesting things around us that really grab our attention. To stay motivated, do something so you don't get provoked into doing something else.
- For example, you want to stay motivated to finish your homework, but are busy reading text messages from friends or websites on your phone. Turn off your phone first.
- After the phone is turned off, place it in a closed place, for example in a bag. Move your bag to make it harder to reach.
- If you can no longer text or browse websites, procrastinating on your homework may feel less fun, making it easier for you to motivate yourself.
Step 4. Use competition
Many people feel motivated by competing. Think again if you ever felt motivated to achieve certain things because of competing with other people (yourself). If you have, have healthy competition with others in secret.
Step 5. Ask for support
You can ask other people for support to provide motivation. Tell friends and family what you want to achieve and the problems you are facing. By telling stories, you will stay motivated and eliminate negative feelings that demotivate you.
Make friends with positive people and be able to motivate yourself to achieve their goals. You will share positive emotions and generate motivation
Method 4 of 4: Taking Care of Yourself
Step 1. Eat healthy foods
Remember that your body has needs too and will react if you ignore them. You will feel so negative that you lose motivation. A healthy diet is necessary to maintain motivation.
Healthy foods, for example: lean meats, nuts, fruits, and vegetables
Step 2. Get in the habit of exercising
When you exercise, your body produces endorphins that trigger feelings of happiness and inspire motivation. Exercising regularly can relieve stress and treat mild depression. Both of these things are triggers for fatigue that will demotivate you.
During your workout, listen to music that gets you excited and motivated to work hard
Step 3. Reduce caffeine consumption
While caffeine seems to be motivating, excessive caffeine consumption causes feelings of restlessness and anxiety that trigger stress and anxiety and can make you feel depressed.
Step 4. Get in the habit of getting a good night's sleep
Lack of sleep will interfere with mental health, for example because you feel tired, sad, and anxious that demotivate you.
- If you have trouble falling asleep, try to sleep in a completely dark room. Make sure there are no sounds to wake you up. Determine a nightly sleep schedule and do it regularly. Observe how long you need to sleep at night to be fully rested and get enough sleep each night.
- For example, if you're used to going to bed at 10:30 p.m. and reading for 30 minutes before falling asleep, apply that schedule regularly to get your body into this sleep pattern.
- Be positive. Negative thoughts are the cause of poor performance. Believe in yourself and tell yourself that you can make mistakes, but they have to be corrected.
- Develop a nonchalant attitude towards life. Many people subconsciously try to oppose life and give up on the grounds "because of genetics", "there is no point in trying", or "it's fate".
- Beware of negative people who don't like to see others thrive. They will try to approach and control you while on the move.