Last Updated on February 16, 2021

What to Do If You Don’t Want to Do Anything

What to Do If You Don’t Want to Do Anything

How often have you had these kinds of motivation problems?

Struggling to get up early to exercise…

Too tired to work on your side-business after work…

Not being “in the mood” to write your forever-in-draft-mode novel…

What’s even worse is that this feeling of “I don’t want to do anything” puts your goals on the back burner. And in many cases, they stay there till you gain the motivation to take action on them.

But many times, that ends up being weeks, months, or even years into the future.

Motivation Eludes Even the Best of Us

Motivation can be a tricky beast:

One the one hand, you can get a sudden inspiration to become healthy and drop everything to go for a jog.

On the other hand, hoping for out-of-nowhere boosts of motivation like this… is definitely an unreliable method of achieving your goals.

So where exactly does that leave you?

Motivation Is Unreliable With Most Common Strategies

At the end of the day, motivation is simply an emotion.

And like all emotions, it’s fickle.

It can be there one day, and then only moments later, disappear like a gust of wind.

But if motivation is finicky to work with… is it something you can ever rely on?


Can it truly get rid of the “I don’t want to do anything” feeling?

Well, this is where most people get motivation wrong in the first place.

It’s not enough to just look at inspiring images or read motivational quotes online. At best, you might get a nice feeling after doing these things.

But if we’re being realistic here… it’s more likely you aren’t being productive even after being “inspired” by those motivational methods.

So it’s easy to conclude that at the very least, those approaches aren’t something you should use.

5 Unique Ways to Motivate Yourself to Take Action And Achieve Your Goals

So how to “manufacture” motivation when you need it?

Before I dive into the 5 unique ways, you may want to get this free Worksheet For Instant Motivation Boost, and get some ideas on how to build your own motivation engine first. Get your free worksheet here.

Then, if you want motivation that works immediately and lasts a long time, you need something that’s different compared to what you normally do or see.

My job is to provide you with some interesting new methods that will motivate you to change your world.

Here are five somewhat offbeat methods of motivation for you to try out. The fact that these methods stray from the pack is a good thing. It means you’ll be mixing things up for the first time. And just being “different” is already a motivational factor to begin with.

So try one out, or try them all out. Either way, you’re likely to find yourself more motivated and action-taking than ever before.

1. Add “Mystery” to Your Motivation MIX

A powerful form of motivation has to do with spontaneity and unexpectedness.

And while we can’t perfectly replicate this, we can do the next best thing.

Try writing out at least 5 different rewards you can use when you take breaks or complete tasks. A range of “reward magnitudes” is ideal, for example:


  • Watch a Youtube video
  • Eat a piece of chocolate
  • Play a short guitar jam session
  • Watch a Netflix show
  • Walk around the block

As you can see, each reward is different:

Some are smaller and more instant gratification.

Others are bigger and more personal to you.

Now, most of the time when you take a break, you do the same old thing each time.

(Most often it’s taking a smartphone break.)

But imagine you could only pick one of these rewards each time.

And going even further – you have to choose one at random as well.

Suddenly, you don’t know what you’re going to get anymore. It could be a small reward. Or it could even be a big reward.

And that makes things interesting again.

And once things are interesting again… you are more than likely to be motivated to work just to see what random (good or amazing) reward you’ll get next.

2. Make Your Motivation “Scary”

On the other motivation spectrum, there’s the “negative” side of things.

With this approach you focus on motivating yourself to avoid something – rather than on being rewarded.

All you’ve got to do is find suitable ways to “punish” yourself for not being productive about whatever’s important to you.

Here’s a few simple examples you can draw ideas from:


  • If you don’t get up early to exercise, your spouse gets to spray you with a water bottle till you get up
  • If you don’t go to the gym after work, you have to eat something you dislike (for me, this would be a grapefruit – too bitter!)
  • If you don’t write a page in your novel during lunch, you have to lock all the distracting apps on your phone for 24 hours

Ultimately, the punishment needs to be powerful enough to “make you feel it.” So these punishments will be unique to you.

But with a little creativity, you’re bound to find something that motivates you to take action so you avoid your punishment at all costs.

3. Use Peer Pressure

This tip works well if you have family and friends who are on board with helping you achieve your goals.

All you’ve got to do is encourage your close ones to “peer pressure” you into working on your goals whenever you’re supposed to.

So let’s say you decide to write your novel after work. Well, if the first thing you do when you get back home from work is toss your jacket on the floor, hop on the couch, and start flipping through channels… this is the time for your family to “strike.”

  • “Hey honey, wouldn’t it be amazing if you finished a page of your novel today? I know I’d be happy.”
  • “Dad, I was reading a book earlier and thought about how cool it’d be if you finished yours.”
  • “Mom, whenever I see that you’re writing a book it makes me so proud – I can’t wait till you finish it!”

And basically, they’d just go on and on till you get to writing or whatever your goal is.

The best thing about this strategy is that it’s hands-off:

Everybody else does the motivating for you. And I’ve found it tends to work no matter how much I don’t want to do anything, either.

4. Drop Your Standards Unreasonably Low

A big motivation problem is feeling your goals are too big and hairy.

If you feel overwhelmed by any task or project you have, your motivation is going to tank for sure.

So a simple way around this is to use the “10% method:”

If you ever feel the slightest resistance to a task at hand, just say you’ll only do 10% of the original task and you can stop there.

So if you plan on doing 20 pushups for exercise, only do 2.

If you plan on writing a page in your novel, just write a paragraph (or even a sentence) instead. Or if you need to clean your room, just say you’ll clean 3 items only.


It’s a simple method, but VERY easy to implement.

And the best part is:

Once you’ve lowered your mental resistance to the task at hand (and thereby increased your motivation to do it), you are VERY likely to do more than just 10%.

And that’s because “startup momentum” can carry you further along the task.

5. Put Your Money on the Line

Nothing hurts like losing your money.

And a simple way to use this idea tying your hard-earned cash to the accomplishment of your goals.

An easy way to do this is by involving a friend or family member. Just grab one of them and say this:

“This is a $20 bill. If you see that I don’t:

  • Go to the gym after work, or:
  • Write a page in my novel, or:
  • Get up early tomorrow

…Then you can have the $20 for yourself.”

You’ll see a big smile across the face of whoever’s helping you, and wonder if they’re rooting for you to fail in the first place.

Either way, you can expect your motivation to work on your goals to skyrocket after using this tip.

The Truth Behind Motivation

Remember, motivation isn’t about feeling inspired or anything else so fluffy. The ultimate goal is creating an urge to act towards achieving your goals.

And I’m confident that if you use some of the strategies I’ve listed here, you’ll be well on your way to being more motivated, take more action, and transform your life forever.

More About Motivation

Featured photo credit: Sharon McCutcheon via

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Ericson Ay Mires

The life coach that helps you create your perfect life with his "Ignite Your Instinct" program.

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Published on May 4, 2021

50 Words of Encouragement for Moving Forward

50 Words of Encouragement for Moving Forward

Do you know how there are saying or words of encouragement that you remember and use all the time? Some came from a loved one, some bring you comfort, and others stick with you from your past and possibly hold you stuck.

These are the words of encouragement that come to mind when you need them most to remind you that:

  • You’ve got this.
  • You can overcome any obstacle.
  • Nothing will stop you.
  • No matter what you need, you will find the solutions.
  • What you really want in life, you can have it. Honestly, you can have it.

Look for the quotes that resonate with you, and write them somewhere prominent in your life. Look for simple solutions and strategies because they are the ones that have the biggest impact. There is a reason why some of the great ideas from the ancients are still the most used and adaptable to 21st-century living—because they work.

Quotes that inspire need to be easy to remember, connect with you on a personal level, and fire up your passion, enthusiasm, and goals in life.

50 Quotes and Words of Encouragement for Moving Forward

Here are 50 quotes and words of encouragement to keep you inspired and motivated.


    2.“For what reasons can it not be you?”

    3. Ditch the guilt. Guilt is one emotion that never leads to good things. Remove the guilt and you can move on.

    4. At this moment in time, you are everything you need to be everything you want to be.

    5. The day you realize how amazing you are is the day the world had better stand back.

    6. You need to know on a good day how to look after yourself and your success on a bad day. How will you ensure you take action on this advice?

    7. Your mind can be a power for your success or power for your failure. Choose wisely the quality of your thoughts. How will you monitor the quality of your thoughts and ensure they work for you?


    8. Even the long-distance swimmer does not achieve success on their own—who is in your team toward success?

    9. How do you keep going? Look how far you have come. What helped you get this far? Who helped you get this far? How will they feature in the future to ensure you succeed and overcome?

    10. Life is easier with love—swap the word “life” for success, happiness, achieving your goals. Now ask yourself—where do you get your love from? The first place should be you.


      12. Learn the science of who you are. This is powerful knowledge that will empower you to move forward no matter what you face or want to achieve.

      13. Trying to copy the route to success that someone else took doesn’t guarantee you success. You have to honor your values, beliefs, and experiences.

      14. What you think is possible is absolutely correct. Challenge what you think.

      15. For one month, ask this question every day and score yourself out of 10 (10 being exceptional, 1 being lousy). Write the answer in your phone’s calendar: How successful do I feel? You can swap successful for happy, rich, loved, etc. Notice what affects your score.

      16. Remember that everything changes. The hibernating tree looks dead but will return in the spring rejuvenated. This is essential knowledge for good times and bad. In bad times, it reminds you to keep going, and in good times, it reminds you to be grateful and keep looking to learn and grow. (Just like that tree!)

      17. What’s stopping you? Is it a perception or a fact? Either way, you can do something about it, even if it is just to change the thoughts attached to the thing that is stopping you. Nothing can have power over you unless you let it.

      18. Steer clear of negative people, news, and views. It’s all too easy to get dragged into other people’s negativity. Understand how negative news, views, and people impact you. If you can’t find ways to keep that negativity away, then step away metaphorically and physically. Your success will appreciate it.

      19. The quality of your thoughts and feelings impacts your actions and results. Everything you can see started as a thought. So, when you need encouragement, ask yourself, “are my thoughts enabling me or disabling me?” Are my thoughts “moving me forward or holding me back?”



        21. Sad isn’t bad. We get all the emotions, not just the good ones. So, when you feel sad, guilty, lonely, upset, frustrated, angry, mad, don’t push those emotions away. Take yourself through this process:

        1. For what reason am I feeling this?
        2. What does it tell me about my life right now?
        3. What does it tell me about my actions and results right now?
        4. What would I like to feel instead?
        5. What would this do for me?
        6. How will I get myself there?

        Take yourself through the process and own all emotions.

        23. The one thing you can control is what you think.

        24. On this planet, your job is not to fit in. Your job is to shine. Stand out. Speak up, and be the unique individual you are meant to be. It’s the quickest way to lasting success.

        25. Words can only have power if you let them. Good words, bad words. Happy words. Successful words. Which words are you giving the most power to?

        26. If you want to achieve more, you’ve got to assume you are worth it. Are you worth it? (The answer is “Yes, with bells on are you worth it!”) And if you don’t believe this, then what will you do to rocket your confidence?

        27. While many fear failure, it is a gift in disguise. It tells you what not to repeat, it tells you what didn’t work, and it moves you forward to what you want to achieve. Don’t berate and hate your failures. They are driving you forward to your success.

        28. It’s hard to achieve great things if you don’t have a plan. It’s like wanting to go on holiday and just rocking up at the airport on the off chance you can get on a plane going to your dream destination. Plan what you want and create a plan of action to help get you there. It’s easier and faster.

        29. Everyone needs someone in their corner—someone to cheerlead, support, nurture, and wipe your grazed knees and remind you that you can. Who is in your corner? You can add me to that list.

        30. Social media is supposed to be good for you. It’s supposed to connect you to like-minded people, inspire you, motivate you, and make you laugh, feel connected, and loved like you are part of something truly special. If it doesn’t, start snoozing the haters, step away from the negative groups, and look for the things that inspire you—yes you can include cute funny cat videos!

        31. Action! The key to success is knowing when to take action and when to stop.


        32. When someone tells you that one book changed their life, that doesn’t mean it will work for you. If it doesn’t work for you, you did not fail, the book failed. The book was the wrong book for you. Don’t stop reading. Just look for the right fit for you.

        33. Just as all people are different with different beliefs and aspirations, so is the journey to success and progress different for all. Expecting to move forward and get what you want by copying others is not the same as looking up to the right role models.

        34. Your success, happiness, and progress in life are not dependent on luck. It is dependent on self-belief. Check your levels.

        35. It is not beneficial to apologize for what you need in life. It takes away its value to you. If you need it, own it!

        35. It’s a good idea to know the difference between enjoying the breeze and being pushed around by life.

        36. Motivation. If you are needing some, don’t look for it on a bad day. Look for it on a good day. Music, aromas, people, environments, photos, even fairy lights, and dancing can be the key to kick you back into action and results.

        37. Black and white. Nothing in life is black and white and yet people want things to be like this—to be “yes” or “no.” Final. Getting what you want in life rarely is so finite. You need to be able to accept a bit of grey area in life to get more of what you want. Being someone reliant on absolutes makes it so much harder.

        38. The racing driver does not concentrate on the brick wall at the side of the road as they race at 100+ miles per hour. They concentrate on the bend, the next bend, the finish line, and success. If you don’t want to hit the wall, concentrate on the track.


          40. Choosing to stop thinking about something because it upsets you, infuriates you, or angers you doesn’t mean your brain is not trying to process how you feel. You need to make space to process those negatives so that you are back in the flow and doing what you excel at.

          41. Being reactive instead of proactive stops you from moving forward. What needs to change?

          42. Is your fundamental desire for what you want rooted in love? If it is not, question how powerful your motivation is.


          43. When you really need motivation and encouragement and want to reach out to others, did you know that helping others also helps you? Altruism is a fast way to feeling good and doing good and it, in turn, helps you to feel motivated, too.

          44. Think back to a time that you overcome adversity, achieved something big, or kept going when you really didn’t want to. What skills do you notice? What were you telling yourself? What did you learn about who you are? How will you use that knowledge moving forward?

          45. “Don’t,” “Won’t,” and “Can’t” all have power. One holds power over you, one is neutral, and one takes ownership. Which one are you using? Can you tell the difference?

          46. Whoever said words had no power had never met a powerful coach! Words can be the building blocks to overcoming anything and getting what you want in life. So, what words are you allowing in your head? How do you word your goals and ambitions?

          47. Feel the fear and do it anyway. Is that a good idea with a starving tiger in the same room? Will you stick around and have a chat about how you wish to overcome the fear of the tiger or will you take action? Move so far away from your fear that it doesn’t exist? And get an expert to help you deal with the tiger? Analogies like this help you see how fear is allowed to stick around and how to get rid of it permanently.

          48. Believing that “it is what it is” is a great way to stay stuck. If you choose to believe there is a better way, you will find it.

          49. Being honest about what you face is not moaning, it’s reaching out. If people see this as moaning, they are the wrong people to be turning to. Maybe it’s time to upgrade your network of friends, colleagues, and people you can trust.

          50. Look in the mirror, who do you see? Someone you love or someone you loathe? Both will impact your success.

          So, What Now?

          Now that you’ve read 50 quotes and words of encouragement, which ones got you thinking and which ones can’t you remember reading? Some will really resonate with you and make you question how you think and how you act. Take just three minutes to decide which words of encouragement are going to be your mantra for the coming week.

          Take the time at the end of the week to review and reflect. Did you see any improvement? Did you really remember to hold on to this quote with the power to encourage you forward to great things?

          If not, stop in your tracks and consider how much you believe in yourself. The most powerful words in the world can’t work on the person who already believes that they are good enough, capable, or have failed.

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          Featured photo credit: Prateek Katyal via

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