Does the start of a new year renew your energy and motivation to achieve change? For most it does, but let’s face it, no matter how driven you are, there will be times when your energy and commitment will ebb. Yes, it happens—even to the most motivated among us.
When you need a boost, try these simple tips to tap into your motivation. You know you can achieve anything when you put your mind to it, so put your mind to making 2015 a stellar year!
1. Determine Your Motivating Force
What’s your why, your passion, the vision beyond the vision, as I call it? You must have a reason to succeed: One that touches the deepest levels of your being. Before you begin every project, explore the big picture. Why is it so important to you? What will you lose if you don’t keep going? If you commit to something, just because you should, you will look back upon failure.
2. Tap Into the Energy of Others
If you feel tired, uninspired, even like giving up, I challenge you to examine the mindset of those around you. Do conversations with your closest companions renew your energy or drain it? Do you have people in your life who can engage in stimulating conversation about business or the other things that you’re passionate about?
As human beings, we give and receive energy and inspiration. Make sure you are receiving as much as, or more than, you are handing out.
3. Get Your Thoughts Organized
When I’m working on a big project, nothing zaps my energy more than an over-stimulated, cluttered mind. This is an easy state for entrepreneurs to fall into because we are so full of ideas and strategies: Your mind can go in a million directions and all of them seem viable at the time.
Collect these thoughts by talking through your desired outcome, what you’ve done so far, and your options for moving forward. A coach is a great resource for this, and I’d be happy to help. Sometimes all it takes is a willing ear, so a patient friend will do. It’s surprising how things can fall back into place simply by revisiting your goals with a second party.
4. Move the Process From Your Head to an Organized List
You know how it goes. You’re determined to make some headway today, and you’ve got two hours to make a dent in your project. But you sit down, uncertain about where to begin. So what do you do instead? Get lost in social media or another distraction, right?
Detailed lists outlining your next steps can eliminate this temptation. Break down your goals into bite-size, manageable chunks, and always refer to your list before you get to work. Better yet, schedule time into your calendar for the very specific tasks that will take you to the next level in your project. The more specific you get, the less your mind will be inclined to go another direction.
5. Renew Your Creativity With a Mind Map
If you keep your ideas and options in your head, it’s difficult to tap into more expansive thinking. Your brain can efficiently manage only so much information before that information becomes nothing more than clutter. When you find yourself feeling overwhelmed or confused about how to get from point A to point B, create a mind map. When you do this, it not only organizes the mess in your brain, it also brings out your creativity and resourcefulness.
6. Have a Plan B
Find inspiration in these words from Thomas Edison: “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”
Be prepared to change course in light of the unexpected. This does not mean that you are giving up on a great idea. It means that you’re destined to find one that’s even better.
7. Don’t Worry, Be Happy
The Dalai Lama was once asked what surprised him most about humanity. “Man,” he answered. Why? “Because,” said His Holiness, “he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never to die, and then dies having never really lived.”
As I said in last week’s article, “Let go of anxious thinking. There’s a difference between seeing the big picture and being well prepared and worrying about every possible problem before it exists. Take calculated risks and focus your energy on preparedness, not anxiety-provoking worry.”
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