“If you feel you have lost the confidence to move on with your desired goal, then you may have to take a slow walk and follow the following steps to stay inspired and renew your level of motivation.”
It’s a new year already, and you tend to have drawn your New Year’s Resolutions! The previous year is gone and cannot be recovered. Reflect on the past year to see how many of your goals you were able to achieve. These goals may be anything from bad habits you want to eliminate, weight loss plan you are about to start, new skills you want to acquire, places you want to travel to, or an educational program you want to undertake.
While trying to reach any of your goals, have you ever been stuck at some point such that your willpower gets eroded by laziness, negative mood, procrastination, or even circumstances? As humans, we operate on what psychologists refer to as the “pleasure principle.” It states how humans have been wired to seek instant gratification of their desires and needs.
Keep Your Eyes on the prize
Most goals we pursue are long-term, leaving us waiting for rewards over a long period. When such satisfaction or fulfillment is delayed, motivation may wane while effort decreases. The goals appear to be impossible to achieve. The situation worsens if you lack someone who can always set you in motion whenever you are down or feel like drawing back.
I was thinking one day, and I realized that if I just had somebody behind me all the way to motivate me, I could make a big difference. Nobody came along like that, so I just became that person for myself. Unknown
The above quote reinforces the importance of a source of motivation. Research indicates that lack of motivation is a major hindrance to goal accomplishment. Well, the year is still fresh, and you can still adjust your urges and natural inclinations in line with prevailing circumstances such that you remain motivated. If you feel you have lost the confidence to move on with your desired goal, you may have to take a slow walk and follow the following steps to stay inspired and renew your motivation level.
1. REconnect to your purpose
When you reconnect with who you truly are and what you really want rather than letting the outside world determine it for you. Reconnect with your purpose and your passion for knowing if your actions are helping you to achieve it. – Susan C. Young
Losing steam doesn’t stop even as you approach the finish line. In fact, your steam tends to get waning at a quicker rate at this stage. The feeling of stagnancy is an indication that you’ve lost sight of the end that awaits you. Your purpose is the “why” behind your actions.
Why did you start in the first place? What values or passions propelled you to undertake the life journey? Are you trying to achieve, and what do you intend to gain from its accomplishment? What mental picture did you create for yourself or your life? By connecting back to your original purpose and intention, you regain the motivation that gets you back on track and forges ahead.
2. Celebrate your wins
No matter how little your wins are, they are worth celebrating. As you journey towards achieving your goal, always take some moments to look back and celebrate the little progress you’ve made. Do not wait for others to celebrate you before you celebrate yourself. You should expect more of yourself than anyone else would do.
The “progress principle” states how progress helps boost emotions, motivation, and perceptions. Thus, you need to set a reward system for yourself for making reasonable progress. You may start with little rewards, such as taking a walk, getting yourself some ice cream, or streaming a Netflix video. As the entire task gets completed or the goal gets accomplished, you can go the extra mile of giving yourself bigger rewards, including taking daybreak or going on a vacation.
3. Seek daily inspirations
People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily. – Zig Ziglar
We tend to lose motivation if we fail to refuel our vehicles every day. Even if you self-motivate yourself, it has to be done frequently to keep moving forward. Even as a creative person, you tend to get bored or stuck at a point. Thus, you require something that can make you feel inspired. Inspirations could be got from books. Read articles, journals, newspapers, etc. The internet has allowed you to explore various pieces of information, insights, and body of knowledge that can help you regain your lost motivation.
If you have lost motivation with your weight loss plan, you may have to get a personal trainer or join other people with a similar goal. If you have lost motivation with writing, read books, or watch videos that can help you reignite your creative strength. There are Facebook groups and communities where people share their setbacks and breakthroughs. Reading through them could motivate you to move forward.
4. Track your progress
Once you know your goals you should measure your progress to achieve them. Seeing your favorable progress will serve as positive reinforcement to continue your hard work and seeing negative progress will alert you to something you should change to get you back on track. – Jerry Bruckner
Tracking your progresses helps you to hold yourself accountable for your goals. It exposes your inadequacies and guides your steps towards achieving your goal. How possible is it to achieve your goals when you lack knowledge on areas where you failed to stay committed to them?
One way to track your progress is by writing them down. This could be on a weekly or monthly basis. Seeing what you’ve written down reinforces your subconscious mind by preventing the goals you intend to achieve from slipping through your mind. By tracking your progress, you identify what works well and what doesn’t. You also get to identify obstacles – such as bad habits and lack of motivation – that impede your progress.
5. Be accountable to someone
When accountability is present, people keep their eyes on a very clear prize. They know what they are working toward and how they are going to get there. – Henry J. Evans
Accountability is a great motivator that keeps you on track on the journey to attain your goals. When you realize that you are answerable to someone, you tend to defy all odds to achieve your goals. This, however, depends on how much regard you have for the person. Usually, such an individual should be someone you wouldn’t want to disappoint.
The benefits of accountability cannot be quantified, especially when you stay true to your commitments. It helps you strive towards achieving your dreams and goals. It also helps you speed up your performance through consistent, steady progress. The one you are accountable to must be willing to give you unbiased feedback. This includes praising you as well as chastising you where necessary. The person could be a family member, a friend, or a more experienced person.
6. Learn to forgive yourself
I have learned, that the person I have to ask for forgiveness from the most is: myself. You must love yourself. It is important to forgive yourself, every day, whenever you remember a shortcoming, a flaw, you have to tell yourself “That’s just fine”. You have to forgive yourself so much until you don’t even see those things anymore. Because that’s what love is like. ― C. JoyBell C.
The journey towards achieving something great is filled with failure, roadblocks, and slip-ups. This is a part of the process. Rather than holding on to your failures, forgive yourself, learn from your mistakes, and move on. Did you miss your gym appointment or wake up late? Don’t be held back by condemning yourself. Brace up and keep your gaze on your goal.
Think of this: Have you ever got stuck in the mud such that your foot flies out from the boot? In this scenario, you are faced with two options: either you put your boot on and keep dragging yourself through the mud with the frustration of getting stuck consistently or take off the boot to ease your movement.
Of course, while the former option indicates self-limiting beliefs and overwhelming emotional baggage that hinder you from moving forward, the latter offers you the motivation and strength you require to forge ahead.
What is holding you back from progressing or achieving your goals – an old habit, self-limiting beliefs, or lack of motivation? The reality is that the journey to success is not usually smooth. Nevertheless, the moment you stop, you seem to get off the track. You may then find it difficult to retrace your steps. Shift your mind from the challenges and focus on the goal ahead. Select the strategy that seems to work best for you. Remember, the goal is to keep moving, even if you have to crawl. Besides, it is never too late to start all over!