Motivation – get some.
What is it? It’s supposed to be the reason why we do what we do (in our lives, careers or community activities) –whether we want to do something or have to do something. Some people are motivated by having money, some people are motivated by the things money can buy and still, some people are motivated by a desire to make a difference. Perhaps, many of us are motivated by all three. We’re also motivated by the desire to survival, and indeed we are motivated by the desire to take care of ours loved ones. Heck, we are motivated because we just want to succeed for the bloody hell of it!
Every once in a while, we become de-motivated, and then we begin to ask ourselves: what now?
De-motivation happens for all sorts of reasons. We set a goal or goals and we attempt it a few times and we fail. Fruitlessness or not seeing ANY success in continuous labor is another obvious de-motivator. Then there are subtle things that de-motivate us such as the cynicism of the people we choose to be around, and even the general cynicism that comes as a result of the unfairness of society. What I consider to be the most important de-motivator, however, is losing focus – that is, forgetting “the why” in our goals.
SO HOW DO YOU GET OUT OF YOUR “MOTIVATION SLUMP?”
Well, I’m not motivational speaker (professionally anyway) but here is what has worked for me in what has been a very rocky post-grad period from not entering law school to being unemployed and underemployed, working on a start-up AND yes, still seeking a full-time position that sponsors internationals.
- Praying. Given that not everyone is religious or spiritual, I understand how this can be seen as irrelevant. (But it’s my blog and I’ll pray if I want to…) I like prayer, it keeps me grounded and focused, it reminds that I am human and not in charge of everything that I encounter and it simply makes me feel better.
- Being around ambitious people. My first year of college, I read a book with the quote – “you are the average of the five people you hand out with the most.” No matter how strong your character is, you are affected by the attitudes and opinions of others which is why I cannot stress the importance of being around people who are positive and “build you up.” Sometimes that may mean cutting down the amount of time you spend with “friends,” especially those that seem to have little or no ambition. (The truth hurts) In the words of Tony Robbins, “when you see a negative person, don’t walk away…run away!”
- Goal-setting and goal-reviews. Goals that are in your head without process and constant evaluations are just wishes at the end of the day. Goals as we know, ought to be S.M.AR.T –Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely. Goals keep us focused. Additionally, reading your goals DAILY is a constant reminder of your WHY in your motivation. It’s corny stuff but it being corny doesn’t mean it’s not true! Furthermore, with life throwing curve balls at all every once in a while, it is necessary to review those goals ever so often and make necessary changes. Furthermore, what you want today is not necessarily what you want six months from now.
Motivation is science to an extent but it’s not rocket science. The above mentioned are part of the elements involved in becoming and staying motivated. Motivation is also an art, something that we have the power to create in our heads and with our hands; where we can see ourselves beyond what is actually visible and even we what we think is possible. Perhaps, the best way to sum this art and science is using Steve Jobs words – “stay hungry, stay foolish.”
How do you stay motivated? I want to know! Below is one of my favorite “motivational” songs too so if you need some encouragement today – take a listen!
Motivation – get some.