by Linda-Ann Stewart
“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.” Zig Ziglar
There’s a saying that you can only motivate yourself. You have to supply the desire for an improvement to make the effort to accomplish your goal. But sometimes, your determination flags and you need a boost. The good news is that you don’t always have to go it alone.
For instance, when I was facilitating smoking cessation classes for the county health department, I had a reputation for being very motivating. Once someone had convinced themselves to commit to the classes, I found ways to encourage them to follow through.
They wanted to accomplish the difficult goal of quitting smoking and wanted group support to achieve it. The group dynamic kept them focused on their goal and gave them inspiration to keep going. But, first, they had to want to quit smoking. No one else could make them want that goal.
Motivation for a Goal
To achieve any goal, you have to be motivated and willing to make changes, put forth energy, and take action of some sort. Your motivation is the driving force and the reason you want a better outcome. No one else can provide this reason for you.
Necessity can provoke you to move forward. For instance, you have to find a job or else you won’t be able to pay your bills, and will end up indigent. Or you discover that your health is in danger unless you make some lifestyle changes. But even then, the possibility of severe difficulties in life doesn’t always motivate people to change. For many people, the danger has to be immediate. They have to feel the pain.
So how do you develop and maintain your motivation, whether it’s something you want or need?
Ways to Stay Motivated
Have you ever gone to motivational program and been inspired? The program aroused your intrinsic desire for something better for yourself and caused you to take action. But not long after the event was over, the excitement probably wore off and your enthusiasm flagged.
Every day, you need some stimulation that will keep you motivated and on course. Here are 5 tips to fuel your drive and keep you stimulated.
1. What’s your “why?” Uncover your big why, which is your reason and purpose for wanting your goal. What is your goal going to get or give you? How will it improve your circumstances? Get detailed. It has to be an aspiration that connects with you. Once you’ve discovered your why, keep referring back to it.
2. Fill your mind with motivation. Read inspirational books, listen to motivational podcasts, and be around uplifting people. Study people who have accomplished what you want to achieve or who overcame obstacles similar to yours. This will add motivation to your efforts.
3. Get creative. When you get bored, discouraged or want to take a break, find a new way to approach the steps to your goal. For instance, change your routine. If you’re always working in your home office, go to a park. Find alternative ways to stay interested in the actions you need to take.
4. Acknowledge your progress. Don’t just check a task off your to do list. That feels good, of course, but to make a bigger impact, congratulate yourself on completing that step. Reward yourself. This is a powerful technique to encourage yourself to keep going.
5. Accept support. Find an accountability or empowerment partner, and ask them to help keep you focused. This is one of the roles of a coach. People who tell a partner what they intend to do, and then report their progress, achieve their goal 76% of the time.
The smoking cessation classes I facilitated used every one of these steps and had a great success rate. The participants needed different ways of keeping themselves motivated, just as everyone with a bold goal does. These tips will motivate, support and inspire you, too, to stay on course to your vision.
Watch the accompanying video, Guided Meditation to Stay Motivated to Achieve a Goal
The Universe completely supports my goals and aspirations. It wants the best for me and knows why my goal is important. The Universe supplies me with all the inspiration and motivation I need to take action. I am Divinely guided and directed in Right Action for my goal and aspiration. My next step is made clear to me.