Never, never, never, never give up. — Winston Churchill
For many people, one of the hardest things is to stay motivated to meet a goal, especially when things get difficult or mundane. The challenge of finding a way to motivate yourself to keep going can be almost as difficult as the task itself. Whether your goal is to be more productive, wake up earlier, exercise regularly, change a bad habit or become happier, you need to find the motivation to stick with it in order to achieve it.
Motivation is the key to reaching any goal. But it’s not always easy to keep to it day in and day out. Sometimes motivation requires a reward or a threat. But often that isn’t enough. Once the reward or threat is removed, you lose your motivation to continue.
Why You Need Motivation and Focus to Achieve Goals
Motivation is what keeps you going towards your goal. If your motivation isn’t strong enough, you are more likely to stop short of your goal.
With the right motivation, successful people have run marathons, lost weight, written books, become more productive, built successful businesses, gotten out of debt and changed their health for the better.
Motivation isn’t the same as setting goals or discipline. Motivation is the reason for doing something. It’s what causes you to act towards a specific goal, such as losing weight or reading a book. It involves the biological, social, emotional and cognitive forces that cause you to act.
Motivation is what drives you toward your goal. It’s what keeps you going and it’s the reason you’ll eventually reach your goal.
Here are 10 tips to help you stay focused and motivated:
Start again if you quit.
Don’t be too hard on yourself if you fall off track for a few days. Just get back to it. Everyone comes up short occasionally. When you fail to meet a weekly goal, don’t get too emotional. Think of it as a lesson. Don’t dwell on the failure. Instead, accept it and move on towards your goal.
Stay accountable to the group of people you’ve shared your goal with.
Check in daily or every few days. Being accountable helps you follow through. No one wants to report they failed because they didn’t follow through.
When a negative thought begins making an appearance, replace it with a corresponding positive one. Instead of saying, “this is too hard!” say, “I can do this!” or, “I’ve got this!”
Build on the successes you’ve already achieved.
Every step you take along the way toward your goal is a success. Celebrate each one. Then build on that feeling of success and move to another small step.
Reward yourself when you accomplish a milestone.
Set appropriate rewards for each step you make toward your goal. Just don’t ruin your progress with a self-defeating reward. For example, don’t have a dessert eating binge to celebrate that you’ve been eating healthy for the past week.
Stay motivated by associating with like-minded people.
Partner with someone who has similar goals. Find an exercise buddy. Partner with your spouse or another family member to provide motivational support. Online groups are a good option as well.
Keep track of your progress with a chart.
It can be a simple calendar or goal setting software that lets you keep track of how you are doing. Create a weekly checkpoint to help you track your progress. When you begin to lose your motivation for your goal, seeing how you are keeping them so far helps keep you inspired. A checkpoint can also help you see when you are lagging and need a kick start to get back on track.
Use visualization techniques every day.
Visualize the successful outcome in detail. Think about how your success will look, how it will feel, taste, smell or sound like. How will you look? What clothes are you wearing? Be as clear on the details as you can.
Get support when you struggle.
Friends and family truly want you to succeed. Enlist others to help keep you motivated. Choose those who know you and know how much success means to you.
Refuel your mind.
Focus on enjoying the process as well as reaching the end goal if things seem to be moving slowly. Attend workshops, take a class or join a group session related to your goal.
Everyone loses their focus on staying motivated at some point.
Those who stay on-point are the ones who recognize when they need a break, who ask for help, and who think positive. They get back on track when they hit a stumbling block. They reward themselves for small successes they make toward their goal.
Are you ready to make personal and spiritual changes in your life? Consider a one on one private session with Moira or a reading to free yourself from limitations and open yourself up to greater possibilities? I invite you to open the door.