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Last Updated on January 18, 2021

15 Simple Things You Can Do to Boost Your Daily Motivation

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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!

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    More to Boost Your Daily Motivation

    Featured photo credit: Carli Jeen via unsplash.com

    Reference

    More by this author

    Colton Black

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

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    Published on September 27, 2021

    What Is Incentive Motivation And Does It Work?

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    What Is Incentive Motivation And Does It Work?

    We’ve all needed a bit of inspiration at some time in our lives. In the past year or two, that need most likely has grown. Who hasn’t been trying to shed those extra pounds we put on during the pandemic? Who hasn’t felt the need to fake a little enthusiasm at joining yet another Zoom call? Who hasn’t been trying to get excited about trekking back into the office for a 9 to 5 (longer if you add in the commute)? Feeling “meh” is a sign of our times. So, too, is incentive motivation, a way to get back our spark, our drive, and our pursuit of the things we say we want most.

    In this article, I’ll talk about what incentive motivation is and how it works.

    What Is Incentive Motivation?

    Incentive motivation is an area of study in psychology focused on human motivation. What is it that gets us to go from couch potato to running a marathon? What spurs us to get the Covid vaccine—or to forgo it? What is it that influences us to think or act in a certain way? Incentive motivation is concerned with the way goals influence behavior.[1] By all accounts, it works if the incentive being used holds significance for the person.

    The Roots of Incentive Motivation

    Incentive motivation’s roots can be traced back to when we were children. I’m sure many of us have similar memories of being told to “eat all our veggies” so that we would “grow up to be big and strong,” and if we did eat those veggies, we would be rewarded with a weekend trip to a carnival or amusement park or playground of choice. The incentive of that outing was something we wanted enough to have it influence our behavior.

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    Growing up, incentive motivation continues to play a major role in what we choose to do. For example, while we may not have relished the idea of spending years studying, getting good grades, pursuing advanced degrees, and graduating with sizeable debt from student loans, a great many of us decided to do just that. Why? Because the end goal of a career, a coveted title, and the associated incentives of financial reward and joy in doing something we love were powerful motivators.

    One researcher who believes in the power of incentive motivation is weight management expert, co-author of the book State of Slim, and co-founder of the transformational weight loss program of the same name, Dr. Holly Wyatt. Her work with her clients has proven time and again that when motivation fizzles, incentives can reignite those motivational fires.

    “Eat more veggies, exercise, keep track of my weight: These things and more DO work, but bottom line, you gotta keep doing them. Setting up rituals and routines to put your efforts on auto-pilot is one way. And along the way, the use of both external and internal motivators helps keep people on track. External motivation sources are those things outside of ourselves that help to motivate us. They’re powerful, like pouring gasoline on a fire. But they may not last very long. Internal motivators are more tied into the reasons WHY we want to reach our goals. In my State of Slim weight loss program, we spend a lot of time on what I call ‘peeling back the onion’ to find the WHY. I think the internal motivators are more powerful, especially for the long-term, but they may take longer to build. They’re the hot coals that keep our motivational fires burning.”

    Examples of Incentive Motivation

    In the way of incentive motivation, specific to the external motivators, Dr. Wyatt challenges her clients to commit to changing just one behavior that will help them reach their weight loss goals. Clients must then agree to a “carrot” or a “stick” as either their reward for accomplishing what they say they will do or as their punishment for falling short. Those incentives might be something like enjoying a spa day if they do the thing they said they would do or sweating it out while running up and down the stairwell of their apartment building a certain number of times as punishment for not following through.

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    Whatever they choose, the goal must be something they really want, and the incentive must be something that matters to them enough to influence their behaviors in reaching those goals. Some people are more motivated by some sort of meaningful reward (a carrot) whereas, other people are more motivated by some sort of negative consequence or the taking away of a privilege (the stick).

    Another example of incentive motivation is playing out currently with companies and government entities offering perks to people who get the Covid vaccine. Nationwide, offers are being made in the way of lottery tickets, cash prizes, concert seats, free admission to events and discounts for food, and even free drink at local restaurants and bars. The list of incentives being offered to the public to increase vaccination rates is pretty extensive and quite creative.[2]  These incentives are financial, social, and even hit on moral sensibilities. But is this particular incentive motivation working?

    Remember that a key to incentive motivation working is if the individual puts importance on the reward being received on the ultimate goal. So, not all incentives will motivate people in the same way. According to Stephen L. Franzoi, “The value of an incentive can change over time and in different situations.”[3]

    How Does Incentive Motivation Differ from Other Types of Motivators?

    Incentive motivation is just one type of motivating force that relies on external factors. While rewards are powerful tools in influencing behaviors, a few other options may be more aligned with who you are and what gets you moving toward your goals.

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    Fear Motivation

    In many ways, being motivated by fear is the very opposite of being motivated by incentives. Rather than pursuing some reward, it’s the avoidance of some consequence or painful punishment that sparks someone into action. For example, married couples may “forsake all others” not out of love or commitment but out of a fear that they may be “taken to the cleaners” by their spouses if their infidelities are revealed.

    Another example wherein fear becomes the great motivator is one we’re hearing about more and more as we’re coming out of this pandemic—the fear of being poor. The fear of being poor has kept many people in jobs they hate. It’s only now that we see a reversal as headlines are shining a light on just how many workers are quitting and refusing to go back to the way things were.

    Social Motivation

    Human beings are social creatures. The desire to belong is a powerful motivator. This type of social motivation sparks one’s behavior in ways that, hopefully, result in an individual being accepted by a certain group or other individuals.

    The rise of the Internet and the explosion of social media engagement has been both positive and negative in its power to motivate us to be included among what during our school days would be called “the cool kids” or “cliques” (jocks, nerds, artsy, gamers, etc.). We probably all have experienced at one time or another the feelings associated with “not being chosen”—whether to be on a team to play some game or as the winning candidate for some job or competition. Social rejection can make or break us.

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    Before You Get Up and Go…

    Know that, especially during these challenging times, it’s “normal” and very much “okay” to feel a lack of motivation. Know, too, that external motivators, such as those we’ve talked about in this article, can be great tools to get your spark back. We’ve only touched on a few here. There are many more—both external and internal.

    Remember that these external motivators, such as incentive motivations, are only as powerful as the importance placed on the reward by the individual. It’s also important to note that if there isn’t an aligned internal motivation, the results will more than likely be short-lived.

    For example, losing a certain amount of weight because you want to fit into some outfit you intend to wear at some public event may get you to where you want to be. But will it hold up after your party? Or will those pounds find their way back to you? If you want to be rewarded at work with that trip to the islands because you’ve topped the charts in sales and hustle to make your numbers, will you be motivated again and again for that same incentive? Or will you need more and more to stay motivated?

    Viktor Frankl, the 20th-century psychiatrist, Holocaust survivor, and author of the best-selling book, Man’s Search for Meaning, is quoted as having said, “Those who have a ‘why’ to live, can bear with almost any ‘how’.” As important as external motivators like incentives may be in influencing behaviors, the key is always to align them with one’s internal “why”—only then will the results be long-lived.

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    So, how might incentive motivation influence you and your behavior toward goals? Knowing your answer might keep you energized no matter what your journey and help to further your successes.

    Featured photo credit: Atharva Tulsi via unsplash.com

    Reference

    [1] Britannica: Incentive motivation
    [2] National Governors Association: COVID-19 Vaccine Incentives
    [3] verywellmind: The Incentive Theory of Motivation

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