Wednesday, 11 July 2018

Motivation 101

I was laying in bed ready to sleep last night when I was suddenly hit by a number of post ideas. These have been few and far between over the past few weeks so I immediately grabbed my journal and scribbled down any plans I could. In this sudden rush of ideas, I came up with a three-step method for getting motivated. I have no idea where this came from, maybe one of the 'Finding Motivation' courses I took last semester, but it seems to be working! I am on a motivational high today!

Step 1: Assess

Before you start the motivation process, you should first figure out what motivates you and how you gather motivation. Some people are very intrinsically motivated. They are able to motivate themselves with thoughts of goals and future. Their rewards for their motivation are feelings, rather than external factors. They act because they know that they will feel satisfied or accomplished once they have completed their task.

Other people are extrinsically motivated. They act because they want to accomplish something external. They study for grades, not the feeling of achievement. They complete tasks because they want recognition or praise.

Our own 'motivation style' sits on a gradient of extrinsic and extrinsic. If we figure out what motivates us and where we lie on this gradient, we are one step closer to getting motivated.

When assessing your motivation style, you should look at past events. Think about when you have felt motivated and pushed to do something. It could be studying for an exam or picking up a sport. Think about why you did it and how you were able to motivate yourself.

Step 2: Access

Time to access your 'motivation materials'! Apply what you have learned about your own motivation style to how you gather your materials. These all belong in your 'motivation toolkit', which is your arsenal against being demotivated.

If you find that you are intrinsically motivated, focus on things that emphasise this. Find quotes that focus on self-satisfaction and personal development. If you're trying to motivate yourself to study, think about what learning means to you and how you will feel when you improve your own knowledge. If you are thinking about getting fit, think about how it will make you feel healthier and about the positive effect it will have on your wellbeing.

If you are extrinsically motivated, motivating yourself without something to actually work towards can be tough. If you are studying, focus on taking practice tests as you study. Seeing the grades that you attain improve will push you on to keep at it. If you want to get fit, maybe sign up to a marathon or start tracking stats of your workout. You will be working towards something, like being fit enough to have the achievement of running a marathon, or improving a reps number or fastest time.

Gather your motivation materials from many sources and keep them all in your 'motivation toolkit'. It can be physical or mental. Think about your motivation style when choosing what to put on your Pinterest boards or which quotes to write down. Think about your motivational style when choosing your goals to work towards. Keep refreshing your toolkit and adding to it!

Step 3: Success

Congratulations, you are now hopefully more motivated, or at least know more about how to get motivated! Now, go out there and crush your goals!

What do you need to motivate yourself for? x

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

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