Staying motivated at work and in life a struggle — our minds are constantly assaulted by hostility and negativity. We all face doubt, negativity, or anxiety at some point and no one is completely immune to it. What separates the self-motivated from the non-motivated is the ability to keep moving forward when things look bleak.
There are 3 main reasons we lose motivation.
1. Lack of confidence – If you don’t believe you can succeed, no one else will.
The first motivation killer is a lack of confidence. When this happens, it’s usually because we’re focusing on what we want and neglecting what we already have. When you only think about what you want, your mind creates explanations for why you aren’t getting it.
Getting out of a negative pattern is tough, but try shifting your attitude to focus on gratitude. By making time to review the positive things in your life, you can refocus on how competent and successful you actually are.
2. Lack of focus – If you don’t know what you want, how can you get it?
The second motivation killer is a lack of focus. Unfortunately, we usually focus on the negative rather than the positive and instead of doing something about our fear, it feeds on itself and drains our ability to self-motivate. Avoid the trap of fear by creating clear, positive goals for yourself. From learning to knit, to eliminating childhood hunger, naming a goal forces you to create a plan of action. Just be sure to keep it smart!
S – Specific (or Significant).
M – Measurable (or Meaningful).
A – Attainable (or Action-Oriented).
R – Relevant (or Rewarding).
T – Time-bound (or Trackable).
3. Lack of direction – If you don’t know what you should do, how can you be motivated to do it?
The final component in self-motivational direction. If focus means creating an ultimate goal, direction is having the day-to-day tools to achieve it. We all know how good it feels to cross an item off our to-do list. Be sure to give yourself that opportunity every day! A lack of direction kills motivation, and without a definite plan of action, procrastination wins.
While there is no recipe for success or simple roadmap to happiness, the best thing to do is understand the connection between thoughts and emotions. Our natural first response to most situations is emotional and can sometimes cause us to lose confidence, focus, and direction. However, by learning how to nurture motivating thoughts, neutralize negative ones, and focus on the task at hand, you can pull yourself out of a slump before it gains momentum.
Christina Philbert (@CmPhilbert) is a Higher Education and PR Consultant, Academic Coordinator, and Counselor. Interested in revolutionizing higher education, crafting dynamic content, baking cookies, and painting her nails.