Many of us find ourselves in motivational slumps that we have to work to get out of. Sometimes it’s like a continuous cycle where we are motivated for a period of time, fall out and then have to build things back up again.
A good way to be continuously self-motivated is to implement something like these 8 steps from Ian McKenzie.
Keep a positive attitude: There’s is nothing more powerful for self-motivation than the right attitude. You can’t choose or control your circumstance, but can choose your attitude towards your circumstances.
How I see this working is while you’re developing these mental steps, and utilizing them regularly, self-motivation will come naturally when you need it.
The key, for me, is hitting the final step to Share With Others. It can be somewhat addictive and self-motivating when you help others who are having trouble.
My 8 Steps
I enjoyed Ian’s article but thought it could use some definition when it comes to trying to build a continuous drive of motivation. Here is a new list that is a little more generic:
- 1. Start simple. Keep motivators around your work area – things that give you that initial spark to get going.
- 2. Keep good company. Make more regular encounters with positive and motivated people. This could be as simple as IM chats with peers or a quick discussion with a friend who likes sharing ideas.
- 3. Keep learning. Read and try to take in everything you can. The more you learn, the more confident you become in starting projects.
- 4. Stay Positive. See the good in bad. When encountering obstacles, you want to be in the habit of finding what works to get over them.
- 5. Stop thinking. Just do. If you find motivation for a particular project lacking, try getting started on something else. Something trivial even, then you’ll develop the momentum to begin the more important stuff.
- 6. Know yourself. Keep notes on when your motivation sucks and when you feel like a superstar. There will be a pattern that, once you are aware of, you can work around and develop.
- 7. Track your progress. Keep a tally or a progress bar for ongoing projects. When you see something growing you will always want to nurture it.
- 8. Help others. Share your ideas and help friends get motivated. Seeing others do well will motivate you to do the same. Write about your success and get feedback from readers.
What I would hope happens here is you will gradually develop certain skills that become motivational habits.
Once you get to the stage where you are regularly helping others keep motivated – be it with a blog or talking with peers – you’ll find the cycle continuing where each facet of staying motivated is refined and developed.
My 1 Step
If you could only take one step? Just do it!
Once you get started on something, you’ll almost always just get into it and keep going. There will be times when you have to do things you really don’t want to: that’s where the other steps and tips from other writers come in handy.
However, the most important thing, that I think is worth repeating, is to just get started. Get that momentum going and then when you need to, take Ian’s Step 7 and Take A Break. No one wants to work all the time!