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Last Updated on January 18, 2021

15 Simple Things You Can Do to Boost Your Daily Motivation

15 Simple Things You Can Do to Boost Your Daily Motivation

More often than not, we look to create positive momentum in our lives by identifying one massive item that we can adjust to create change and generate daily motivation. The realistic approach is to take a bite-sized strategy to achieve newfound motivation.

With that in mind, I’ve come up with a list of 15 simple things you can do to boost your daily motivation.

1. Identify and Establish a Long-Term Goal

Motivation can feel as fickle as daily weather predictions, but there are numerous ways to boost your daily motivation and ensure that you are on a track of success in your life pursuits.

When working to achieve that required boost, the first step has to be for you to create a long-term, overarching goal that you will start to work towards.

Rome may have not been built in a day, but the idea of what it was going to be had to exist before the end result ever materialized.

In the same way, you have to be strategic in creating a long-term goal and then working to pursue relentlessly.

The hard part is figuring out the goal.

The easy part is activating that boost in your daily motivation.

2. Target Milestones in Your Daily Pursuit

Keeping your long-term goal in mind, the next step in this journey of keeping your motivation levels sky high is to create bite-sized goals within the larger goal for you to pursue.

You won’t have any luck losing 50 pounds if you are trying to do so in the span of a week. But if you create target milestones within the long-term pursuit of being more fit, then you will experience the joys of the smaller victories.

Those small victories will give you a powerful feeling of accomplishment and continue to transform your daily motivational levels for the better.

If you need help learning how to set milestones, check out this article.

In time, those victories will compound, and your motivation will only continue to grow as you continue to check off more of the boxes towards your overall goal!

3. From Checking Boxes to Cashing Checks

In creating target milestones within your overarching goal, it is even more important to set up checkpoints within those milestones.

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As a parent, it can sometimes be much easier to get my child to comply with a request if I include a small prize for said compliance. We often encourage our daughter to brush her teeth, after which we give her a tasty vitamin gummy, and this has helped establish a positive habit in her morning ritual.

If you have identified your target milestones, pick a few of those and add some kind of reward as a pairing with accomplishing that milestone.

Keep in mind the reward shouldn’t in itself be a negating factor towards your long-term pursuit.

4. Firm up Your Foundation

Considering the first few steps in boosting your daily motivation levels, have you really spent much time considering the purpose behind your pursuit?

Having a true understanding of why you are pursuing a goal will help you to keep after it in the long-term.

Do you know why you are trying to pursue that goal?

Spending time defining your purpose behind the pursuit of a long-term goal will allow for a more successful path and an extended duration of that journey towards the goal.

That strong foundation will serve as a friendly reminder that allows you to keep those motivational levels boosted and in a place that will lead to continued success as you move forward.

5. Publicly Commit

When more people are aware of your pursuit, the pressure to not fail starts to accumulate. While pressure can sometimes be detrimental to a pursuit, a little social pressure can be a healthy thing to keep you focused on the task at hand.

When I know that my parents, significant other, friends, or co-workers are aware of my pursuit, I am more likely to strive towards my end goal with more sincerity.

Similarly, it was much easier for me to work out, exercise, and eat properly in high school when I had a basketball coach that reminded me each day what I was pursuing.

While it is a simple gesture, opening yourself up to the “public” and making a pronouncement of your intentions can serve as a strong motivating tool for you to keep on keeping on.

6. Meet Motivated People

Too often, we make attempts to increase our daily motivation levels without examining the people who are influencing our life’s direction.

If you are supposed to be the average of the 5 people that you spend the most time with, where does that leave you?

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You should strive to seek out people both in your professional career and in your personal life that are more successful than you are.

If you are lacking motivation in life, try to be in regular contact with friends or peers in the workplace who have the levels of motivation that you desire. What empowers them day in and day out to maintain high levels of motivation and accomplish their goals?

If you need a little extra, try posting motivational quotes around your workspace.

7. Develop an Accountability Team

We all have the best intentions when we set out towards any specific goal in our life, but life has a way of throwing in challenges from time to time, which leads to those inevitable collapses in our motivation.

This is the time in your journey when a team of friends, family, or your significant other needs to jump in on your behalf and remind you of what you set out to do.

Sometimes, your accountability team may be a group of strangers that all share a common cause (weight loss groups, group therapy, basketball teammates), and sometimes they are people with whom you are very intimate.

Whatever it looks like for you, this team is vital to your success when you start coming up on roadblocks to your daily motivation.

8. Consider Future Impasses

The prospect of boosting our daily motivation maintaining it over the long-term is well and good, but you must remember that the road won’t always be silky smooth.

A key aspect of journeying to a better place in your own life is to plan for future successes AND failures.

What obstacles lay ahead of you that you believe you will need to be prepared for?

Without considering what challenges are to come, you will smash into some road blocks that stop you in your tracks.

If you take the time to consider the trajectory of your path through life and mentally set aside the energy and time to consider what pitfalls may come, you will be more prepared to handle them.

9. Fuel Your Success

Consider, too, the fuel you use on a daily basis to give you energy for the day. Are you slamming pizzas in the evening and donuts for breakfast?

Your physical body and how you care for it has a direct and immense impact on your mental state, motivation levels, and energy to get after life in a positive way!

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Take a look at what you eat on a daily basis. Ask yourself if you should make some subtle changes in what you consume to better maintain energy levels and keep your daily motivation high.

10. Energize Your Pursuit

Coffee and/or tea is such a fantastic way to get your body in a routine of fully waking up, activating your awareness, and starting the day off on the right foot.

What better way to boost your daily motivation than to wake up with a fresh injection of caffeine to clear the fog out of the attic? Research from the American Heart Association shows that[1]:

“[Drinking coffee] gives you energy and may help you lose weight and sharpen your mental focus, thanks to the magic of caffeine. Studies have shown that caffeine may improve your mood, help your brain work better and improve performance during exercise.”

That same study did warn that the way you drink your coffee will play a part in whether it is good for you. Sugar-loaded coffees will end up hurting you more than they help you.

Over consumption of caffeine can be just as bad, especially if it interrupts your normal sleep cycle, so be careful!

11. Catch Some Z’s!

According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute[2],

“Sleep plays a vital role in good health and well-being throughout your life. […] The damage from sleep deficiency can occur in an instant, or it can harm you over time. [Sleep deficiency] can affect how well you think, react, work, learn, and get along with others.”

Get sleep to boost daily motivation.

    Sleep gives our body and mind the time to reset, recharge, and repair the damage that we do in our day-to-day movements, which is why it is so crucial to get proper rest[3].

    12. Materialize Motivation

    Some of the greatest tools for building up your daily motivation levels are simple yet superbly effective. Exercise is a huge part of contributing towards a healthy mind and body. If you can get out and exercise on a regular basis, your motivation to continue and exercise will actually increase.

    Studies have shown that “moderate exercise could increase your motivation to work out and lead to an all-around healthier lifestyle”[4].

    So just by working out 30 minutes a day, research shows that your desire to continue with that positive behavior will increase. Even if you are just walking for 30 minutes each day as your form of exercise, that can be a great way to take strides towards a healthier mind and body.

    The better off you are mentally and physically, the stronger your daily motivation will be.

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    13. Know Yourself

    You know yourself best, and you will be most aware of your internal weaknesses, patterns of behaviors, and path to having a decrease in daily motivation towards a specific goal.

    Exercise your self-awareness and plan ahead for potential areas of failure that you have encountered in the past. If you work to navigate away from your previous areas of failure that may have led to a decrease in motivation, then you will obviously have a stronger potential for success.

    Changing habits is hard, but if you can first control your thoughts and responses, then those conditioned responses will eventually convert into new positive habits. Those willl eventually recondition your personality and behavior.

    All of this work and effort will go far in increasing your daily motivation.

    14. Overcome Your Fears

    The retreat of daily motivation is often related to self-doubt or internal fears creeping into your mind.

    So often, when we are near the peak of a success, we revert to a previous version of ourselves in our mind and allow fear to dictate our ability to continue.

    You can learn about the main fears that hold us back here.

    The truth is that internal fear is a mental block that we often allow to enter the equation, and we allow it to bully us out of a pursuit or aspiration.

    If you work to face your fears, then you will begin to realize that they don’t have any power unless that power is given to those fears by the individual.

    Fear is merely an idea and if you overcome it, you will find that there isn’t much of anything holding you back from success!

    15. Pool Your Victories

    When you’ve been working on a goal for a long time and have painstakingly maintained a strong foundation of motivation throughout, it’s just as important that you enjoy that victory.

    Your strive to increase your daily motivation is not without pitfalls. But in the end, when you work hard to keep that effort up and see it through, you will experience the benefits of that journey.

    Victory never comes easy, so make sure you give yourself some credit and take the time to appreciate your growth through that journey to be more motivated and reach your long-term goals!

    Final Thoughts

    Daily motivation comes from defining your goals and learning to work toward them through specific steps. Stay focused on what matters to you, look up some inspirational quotes, and watch how your motivation increases day after day!

    More to Boost Your Daily Motivation

    Featured photo credit: Carli Jeen via unsplash.com

    Reference

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    Colton Black

    Motivational Coach, Self-Help Blogger, Recording Engineer, Professional Dad

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    Published on February 17, 2021

    How to Hack the Reward System in Your Brain And Stay Motivated

    How to Hack the Reward System in Your Brain And Stay Motivated

    How do we achieve our biggest goals in life? Hard work, learning new skills, and staying focused are definitely important things, but one of the most important things we need is motivation. Losing motivation can stop us in our tracks. It can make us procrastinate, doubt our skills and abilities, and take us off the path to success. In the worst cases, a lack of motivation can destroy our goals and kill our dreams.

    Where does motivation come from?

    It starts with thoughts and chemicals in the reward systems in our brains. It continues to develop in our brains and is further shaped by our behaviors. This is why neuroscience, which is the study of the function of the brain, is so important.

    When we understand the basics of neuroscience, we can hack the reward system in our brains so we can stay motivated to achieve our biggest goals.

    The Neuroscience of Motivation

    At the most basic level, humans want to avoid pain and experience pleasure. Our pleasure-seeking behavior is based on a mental reward system that’s controlled by our brains. This reward system is what keeps us motivated and helps us achieve our biggest goals and dreams.

    Neurotransmitters are chemicals in our brains that help shape our thoughts and behaviors. One of the main neurotransmitters in our reward system is the “pleasure” chemical dopamine. Dopamine is produced mainly in the mid-brain and then moves to other areas of the brain, such as the amygdala, which plays a big role in our emotional development. It also moves to the prefrontal cortex, which is responsible for thinking, feeling, planning, and taking action.[1]

    When you do something pleasurable, your brain releases dopamine to make you feel good mentally and physically. This commonly happens when we eat our favorite foods, have sex, have a great conversation with someone, or do something else we really enjoy. Each time we feel pleasure from doing something, our brains remember what made us feel good. It actually assigns a reward value for everything we do.

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    For example, eating a slice of our favorite pizza may have a higher reward value than drinking a smoothie. Being on that tropical vacation will have a higher reward value than watching that water fountain downtown.

    Our brains even release dopamine before we engage in those things that make us happy. It’s the expectation of the reward rather than the reward itself that has the strongest influence on our emotional reactions and memories of what’s pleasurable.[2] Just planning that tropical vacation by checking out different locations on a travel site or looking at things we want to buy on Amazon stimulates our reward system by releasing dopamine.

    Thinking about starting a project at work that we’re really passionate about also activates our reward system. This act of feeling the pleasure generated by our mental reward systems is what creates reward-seeking behavior and is a big part of motivation.

    Vanderbilt University researchers discovered that “go-getters” who are more willing to work hard have greater dopamine activity in the striatum and prefrontal cortex, two areas of the brain that influence motivation and reward.[3]

    Hacking Our Brain’s Reward System

    Here are four ways to hack the reward system in your brain to stay motivated.

    1. Keep Growing

    When you do the same things over and over, that dopamine rush tends to get smaller and smaller. A great way to stay motivated is to keep growing by doing bigger and bigger things.

    Take on bigger, more challenging projects at work. Once you’ve reached a running or fitness milestone, start working toward a bigger one. If you’re fluent in a foreign language, learn how to have more complex, philosophical conversations. If you have your own business, find ways to acquire more clients so you can generate more profit. Keep learning new skills that will push you to the edge of your comfort zone.

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    Taking on greater challenges helps our brain’s reward system continue to assign high reward values to things we do. Start by accomplishing small goals. As you accumulate more and more small wins, work your way up to more challenging goals.

    2. Use Visualization

    “Visualization is daydreaming with a purpose.”—Bo Bennett

    A great way to stay motivated is to visualize accomplishing a goal—even though you haven’t completed it yet. Visualization actually causes the brain to release dopamine. This makes us see our future rewards more clearly and go after them more fervently.

    When our brains release dopamine and we feel that rush of euphoria, our hippocampus, which is part of our brain’s limbic system, records those pleasurable moments in our long-term memory. The more we visualize success, the more our brains associate this visualized success with pleasurable feelings.

    When we can imagine a better future, we’re motivated to keep pushing forward and overcoming obstacles in our path. This is why people work hard to get raises and promotions, invest their money, put their kids thru college, and do other things that help them or others prosper later in life.

    Arnold Schwarzenegger, Oprah Winfrey, Will Smith, Jim Carrey, and other famous and influential people have used visualization to achieve sky-high success.[4] It’s a great way to use the power of your imagination to keep you motivated to succeed.

    3. Avoid Excessive Stress

    High levels of stress are associated with chronic inflammation, which can cause our motivation to decrease. Researchers at Emory University have theorized that chronic inflammation from stress may cause a chemical reaction in the body that decreases dopamine supplies in the brain.[5]

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    Low levels of stress can actually help us perform better by making us more alert. That adrenaline rush we get from stress can give us the energy and the edge to do our best. But when stress levels are high, stress can be damaging to our bodies, minds, and motivation.[6]

    High-stress can lead to burnout. In the worse cases, it can cause people to quit projects or quit their jobs. It can cause mental problems such as anxiety or depression. It can lead to health problems like heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and other illnesses. Reduce stress by doing deep breathing exercises, meditating, running, or exercising regularly.

    4. Reframe Challenges

    If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.—Wayne Dyer

    Another great way to hack your brain’s reward system is to change how you look at challenges in your life. A common problem is that many people see difficult work as an obstacle or simply something they don’t like doing.

    A good strategy is to look at difficult situations and obstacles as opportunities that will help you and those around you grow. This will help us look at difficult things in a positive light and actually look forward to doing them instead of dreading them.

    For example, if three employees on your team aren’t getting along with each other and two of them are thinking about quitting, don’t look at this as a very stressful, terrible problem. Instead, look at the situation as an opportunity to use your interpersonal skills to gather the angry employees together, let them voice their concerns, and then resolve the problem.

    It will help them improve personally and professionally. It will also help you and your company prosper as well. You can also apply this same way of thinking to your personal life. If your friends or family members aren’t getting along, use the disagreement as a growth opportunity that will benefit them and you.

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    When we can see difficult things as great opportunities, we’ll start to look forward to them. When we look forward to doing things, it makes the reward system in our brains reward us with more dopamine, and it increases the chances that we’ll look at future problems as opportunities to grow.

    Conclusion

    Motivation is a challenging part of personal and professional development. This is why motivational videos and motivational speeches are so popular. A central part of staying motivated, even during the most challenging times, is to understand how our brains work. Science has given us a good understanding of our brain’s reward system and the chemicals and pathways that allow it to shape our behavior.

    Hack that reward system in your brain by taking on bigger challenges, visualizing success, avoiding excessive stress, and looking at difficult situations as opportunities to help others and help yourself grow.

    When we begin to master our brains, we’ll be better able to master our lives and achieve those big goals.

    More Tips on How to Stay Motivated

    Featured photo credit: Giorgio Trovato via unsplash.com

    Reference

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