How to build motivation that lasts all year long
Posted on January 29 2020
The best thing about the start of a new year is the motivation. Your enthusiasm is high, you’re determined to focus on your goals all year long and you’re hoping to stick out your resolutions. But we all know that as time progresses, that enthusiasm can be hard to keep up. In fact, around 80% of us will have given up on our resolutions by the end of Feb. Maintaining motivation all year long takes effort, but luckily, there are ways to make it easier. Here are 3 ways to help you stay driven and focused this year.
Schedule your motivation
Motivation can come from lots of different places. Whether it’s an encouraging quote on your wall, or a bit of help from your friends, every little helps at this time of year. But it’s important to create the right foundations. A good place to start is your schedule. If you don’t make a specific time for something, it’s probably not going to happen on the regular. So, make a specific time for whatever you need to get done and stick to it. Whether it’s working out, writing a book, or making your business plan, getting into a set routine can help. Rather than waiting for motivation or inspiration to strike, set a schedule to help make a habit. Once the routine kicks in, suddenly getting up at 6am for the gym won’t be so much of a struggle.
Break it down
It’s key to break down your goals into bite-sized chunks. You’re sure to stay more optimistic if your goals are actually achievable. Let’s take work, for example. Maybe one of your goals this year is to get a promotion. So, you’re working harder and longer than usual. It might be difficult to feel motivated all the time, but you can make it easier by breaking your day down. Most aspects of our life have a rhythm, and that includes how we go about achieving our goals. So, split your day into more manageable blocks. Going full-throttle for 8 hours at a time just goes against our intrinsic design.
Try working in hour-long sessions and taking breaks in between. Or if you’re tuned-in to your body’s signals, just try to take notice when you get restless or lose focus. The key here is to work smarter, not harder. This way, you can pulse your productivity and continue to feel motivated in those periods where you’re really putting the work in. This goes for all your goals this year, work-related or not. Say you’ve got an hour to spend in the gym, but it seems to be dragging. Set timers for 10 minute blocks, and work through your session in chunks. It makes a difficult task far more bearable.
Eat the frog
We’re not referring to French cuisine here. Mark Twain once said that if the first thing you do each morning is to eat a live frog, you can go through the day with the satisfaction of knowing that that is probably the worst thing that is going to happen to you all day long. So, ‘eating the frog’ is just getting the hardest part of your day out of the way first. This can pretty much apply to whatever goal you’re working towards. The ‘frog’ is the least likeable task on your to-do list, the one you’re most likely to put off doing. By tackling your major task first thing, you’re likely to keep up your levels of productivity thanks to the satisfaction you’ll get from completing it. This sense of achievement will get your momentum going and keep you focused and motivated to carry on achieving more. If you get into a habit of getting your worst task done before you move onto anything else, this might just help you avoid procrastination and give you the motivation to keep going.
What to remember
We all know that finding motivation is tricky at times. But the good news is, there are ways to make it easier. Setting yourself up for success starts with creating a time-specific routine you can stick to. Make your goals manageable and break them down so you’re not overwhelmed. And of course, ‘eat the frog’ first to get the worst bit of your day out the way! These simple steps can make it that little bit easier to keep your motivation high, and your goals on track. Give them a try this year.