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11 Ways to Motivate Yourself to Complete any Task in New Year

11 Ways to Motivate Yourself to Complete any Task in New Year

Motivation

    Motivation is the mental push from you to accomplish an action. People have motives to do many things. Maslow’s Theory, one of the widely discussed theories of motivation debates that physiological needs (such as food, water, sleep etc) are the most basic and fundamental.

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    On the basic needs level, we could visualize how getting fired may lose our ability to buy food and get a good night sleep. However, some of us are capable enough to not worry about these needs. We lose motivation with our projects and tasks. We fail to see how the current task maps to a bigger picture. We need more defined ways to motivate us everyday. Here are some ways to help you in the new year.

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    1. Start with the small bits. Procrastination occurs when the task is too big. Break the project down to smaller chunks that suit your attention span. If you can concentrate for only 40 minutes, break up your task to allow you to complete it within 40 minutes.
    2. Look forward the success after completion. Getting started is good, but completion of the task is the outcome you need. Visualize how completing your current task at hand will satisfy yourself and contribute to your success.
    3. Rewards. Reward yourself after each task is completed. It’s okay to reward yourself by watching 10 minutes of television after the completed 40 minutes of work. You’ve done a good job. It’s okay to cut yourself some slack.
    4. Find your motivational switch. Everyone has a way to switch on their own motivation mode. Some people may be motivated by praising their efforts, others may be motivated by participating into a group discussion. Whatever it is, find out what’s your switch and exploit it. Look at Maslow’s hierarchy of needs to get some ideas.
      Maslow's hierarchy of needs
      • Map the task into long-term goals. How can your task at hand contribute to your long term goals? Is your long-term goal achieving financial freedom, or social significance? Will working now directly help your long-term goals?
      • Think about how procrastination eats away at your success. If thinking positively does not work for you, then think about what will happen if you do not complete the tasks on time? Thinking negatively gives you stress, and stress may help you get through tough times. It’s depends on the situation and your personality. Pressure may work for you.
      • Give yourself a punishment or consequences. Can competitors overtake you if you are not working right now? Promise yourself not to go golfing before you’ve completed your task. Similar to stress, punishment may work for you to eliminate your lack of motivation.
      • Ask yourself a question: Why work? When you’ve fulfill all your basic needs – you are wealthy and healthy. Why brother to work? You keep working because there is something deep inside that makes you want to continue. Find what it is, so you can remind yourself and motivate yourself on the task level.
      • Looks for bits that you really love to do, and do it. To motivate by passion is my favorite. Find what you love to do and do that part first. When you have started and is in the flow, other tasks in the same project will become easier.
      • Join with other people who are working hard. Has it ever occur to you when you are surrounded by people who work hard, you will be energized and will work hard as well? People motivates each others. If you have friends/colleagues who are working on a similar project, join them, discuss and talk about the project. Participation will motivate you.
      • Kill the repetitions and schedule. Are you being too organized and work on the same schedule for projects and tasks? You may reduce your own motivation by the Hawthorne effect. Work around the clock. Complete the task at another time. Walk away. Do something else for now.

      If you suffer by your lack of motivation this year, try one or more of these tips in 2007. Once you’re motivated, nothing can stop you being successful.

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      Leon Ho

      Founder of Lifehack

      Book summary: A Technique for Producing Ideas 10 Ways to Extend Laptop Battery Life Bob Parsons on His 16 Rules for Survival Free note taking templates and techniques Fifty Essential Topics on Economics

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      Last Updated on October 15, 2019

      Is Procrastination Bad? The Truth About Procrastination Revealed

      Is Procrastination Bad? The Truth About Procrastination Revealed

      Procrastination is very literally the opposite of productivity. To produce something is to pull it forward, while to procrastinate is to push it forward — to tomorrow, to next week, or ultimately to never.

      Procrastination fills us with shame — we curse ourselves for our laziness, our inability to focus on the task at hand, our tendency to be easily led into easier and more immediate gratifications. And with good reason: for the most part, time spent procrastinating is time spent not doing things that are, in some way or other, important to us.

      There is a positive side to procrastination, but it’s important not to confuse procrastination at its best with everyday garden-variety procrastination.

      Sometimes — sometimes! — procrastination gives us the time we need to sort through a thorny issue or to generate ideas. In those rare instances, we should embrace procrastination — even as we push it away the rest of the time.

      Why we procrastinate after all

      We procrastinate for a number of reasons, some better than others. One reason we procrastinate is that, while we know what we want to do, we need time to let the ideas “ferment” before we are ready to sit down and put them into action.

      Some might call this “creative faffing”; I call it, following copywriter Ray Del Savio’s lead, “concepting”.[1]

      Whatever you choose to call it, it’s the time spent dreaming up what you want to say or do, weighing ideas in your mind, following false leads and tearing off on mental wild goose chases, and generally thinking things through.

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      To the outside observer, concepting looks like… well, like nothing much at all. Maybe you’re leaning back in your chair, feet up, staring at the wall or ceiling, or laying in bed apparently dozing, or looking out over the skyline or feeding pigeons in the park or fiddling with the Japanese vinyl toys that stand watch over your desk.

      If ideas are the lifeblood of your work, you have to make time for concepting, and you have to overcome the sensation— often overpowering in our work-obsessed culture — that faffing, however creative, is not work.

      So, is procrastination bad?

      Yes it is.

      Don’t fool yourself into thinking that you’re “concepting” when in fact you’re just not sure what you’re supposed to be doing.

      Spending an hour staring at the wall while thinking up the perfect tagline for a marketing campaign is creative faffing; staring at the wall for an hour because you don’t know how to come up with a tagline, or don’t know the product you’re marketing well enough to come up with one, is just wasting time.

      Lack of definition is perhaps the biggest friend of your procrastination demons. When we’re not sure what to do — whether because we haven’t planned thoroughly enough, we haven’t specified the scope of what we hope to accomplish in the immediate present, or we lack important information, skills, or resources to get the job done.

      It’s easy to get distracted or to trick ourselves into spinning our wheels doing nothing. It takes our mind off the uncomfortable sensation of failing to make progress on something important.

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      The answer to this is in planning and scheduling. Rather than giving yourself an unspecified length of time to perform an unspecified task (“Let’s see, I guess I’ll work on that spreadsheet for a while”) give yourself a limited amount of time to work on a clearly defined task (“Now I’ll enter the figures from last months sales report into the spreadsheet for an hour”).

      Giving yourself a deadline, even an artificial one, helps build a sense of urgency and also offers the promise of time to “screw around” later, once more important things are done.

      For larger projects, planning plays a huge role in whether or not you’ll spend too much time procrastinating to reach the end reasonably quickly.

      A good plan not only lists the steps you have to take to reach the end, but takes into account the resources, knowledge and inputs from other people you’re going to need to perform those steps.

      Instead of futzing around doing nothing because you don’t have last month’s sales report, getting the report should be a step in the project.

      Otherwise, you’ll spend time cooling your heels, justifying your lack of action as necessary: you aren’t wasting time because you want to, but because you have to.

      How bad procrastination can be

      Our mind can often trick us into procrastinating, often to the point that we don’t realize we’re procrastinating at all.

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      After all, we have lots and lots of things to do; if we’re working on something, aren’t we being productive – even if the one big thing we need to work on doesn’t get done?

      One way this plays out is that we scan our to-do list, skipping over the big challenging projects in favor of the short, easy projects. At the end of the day, we feel very productive: we’ve crossed twelve things off our list!

      That big project we didn’t work on gets put onto the next day’s list, and when the same thing happens, it gets moved forward again. And again.

      Big tasks often present us with the problem above – we aren’t sure what to do exactly, so we look for other ways to occupy ourselves.

      In many cases too, big tasks aren’t really tasks at all; they’re aggregates of many smaller tasks. If something’s sitting on your list for a long time, each day getting skipped over in favor of more immediately doable tasks, it’s probably not very well thought out.

      You’re actively resisting it because you don’t really know what it is. Try to break it down into a set of small tasks, something more like the tasks you are doing in place of the one big task you aren’t doing.

      More consequences of procrastination can be found in this article:

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      8 Dreadful Effects of Procrastination That Can Destroy Your Life

      Procrastination, a technical failure

      Procrastination is, more often than not, a sign of a technical failure, not a moral failure.

      It’s not because we’re bad people that we procrastinate. Most times, procrastination serves as a symptom of something more fundamentally wrong with the tasks we’ve set ourselves.

      It’s important to keep an eye on our procrastinating tendencies, to ask ourselves whenever we notice ourselves pushing things forward what it is about the task we’ve set ourselves that simply isn’t working for us.

      Featured photo credit: chuttersnap via unsplash.com

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