You know those mornings when you just want to stay in bed? Or those workdays where your mind keeps drifting off and Facebook just opens up on its own? And then go jogging after work? No, leave it for today – I simply lack any motivation!
What if you could motivate yourself at any time? In this article you will learn why you don’t have to wait for motivation, but can draw it from within yourself. In addition, there are of course 6 practical tips on how you can motivate yourself.
What exactly is motivation?
The word motivation is derived from the Latin word movere, which means nothing other than to move. Or to put it colloquially: motivation means getting off your ass ;-).
Furthermore, there is the distinction between extrinsic and intrinsic motivation. Extrinsic motivation means that the incentives lie in external sources, but do not come from yourself. For example, if you drag yourself to work just for the paycheck, then you are extrinsically motivated. Intrinsic motivation comes from within you. You do something because it brings you joy and because it is important to you.
If you are intrinsically motivated, you have more energy and patience to face challenges, you are more satisfied and more successful.
How can you motivate yourself effectively & quickly?
So now we know that we can tap into both our environment and our inner selves to draw motivational energy from them. However, in the best case scenario, we look for intrinsic sources of motivation so that we stay motivated in the long run.
It is also very important to understand that our motivation is in our own hands. Sure, we can wait for the boss to promise us a promotion to motivate us. But how often does that happen? Besides, that would be an extrinsic reward anyway, so it would lose its effect very quickly. In the following, we have 6 tips for you on how you can motivate yourself in the long term.
1. Find out what really motivates & drives you
Another source of inner motivation are our values. Every person has something particularly important in life. Perhaps you place particular value on financial freedom, personal growth or lifelong learning. Find out what is important to you personally.
Now think about how you can live out these values. For example, ask yourself the question “What new things can I learn at work today?” You already have something to look forward to and instantly increase the level of your motivation!
2. Recognize and transform limiting beliefs
Do you sometimes have thoughts like the following:
- That doesn’t do anything for me anyway!
- I have already tried everything anyway.
- I just don’t have the luck like others.
These sentences are examples of negative beliefs that have taken root in your subconscious. So it’s no wonder if you can’t find motivation for work, sports or healthy eating. After all, these beliefs are absolute motivation killers!
By recognizing negative beliefs, you can disable them. Or even better: You can change them into positive beliefs! Set yourself daily affirmations, such as “I enjoy movement” and thus reprogram your subconscious. This creates new sources of energy for your intrinsic motivation.
3. The 25/5 rule
The Pomodoro technique is a time management technique that also increases your motivation. We often can’t get going because the task seems too complicated, the project too difficult, the mountain too high.
With the Pomodoro technique, however, you divide the task into easily digestible 25-minute intervals. Working on something for 25 minutes doesn’t sound so bad anymore, does it? And the best part: after 25 minutes, you get a 5-minute break as bonus motivation!
4. Gratitude as a natural mood booster
We are more motivated when we are in a good mood. But stop, no! That doesn’t mean you should go to the liquor cabinet. Instead, you can use gratitude as a natural mood booster. Write down at least three things you are grateful for. If you’re still in a grouchy mood after that, write down three more things and then write them down again. Whether you like it or not, it will put you in a better mood!
5. Find a motivational buddy
Getting yourself up again and again on your own can be quite exhausting in the long run. Make it easier on yourself by finding a motivational buddy. If you go to the gym with someone or meet up to finally finish your tax return, the presence of the other person will help you not to give up. And of course, the after-work beer can be enjoyed better together.
6. Set fixed & attractive rewards
If you can’t motivate yourself intrinsically or you just have to do a totally sucky task, then set yourself a fat reward. This can be a visit to the cinema, the good sushi of your favorite restaurant or even a vacation!
In the same way, you can also give yourself small rewards after the individual steps. This way you divide the task into smaller units, as mentioned above with the Pomodoro technique, and the reward sweetens the break.
Whether or not you were able to motivate yourself to do your best today, celebrate yourself! Celebrate yourself for every little progress and for every little spark of motivation that you could ignite in yourself.
Because a guilty conscience and self-criticism will not intrinsically motivate you! Instead, they eat away at your nerves and worsen your mood. A positive mood makes it easier for you to motivate yourself. So if you have an unproductive day, cut yourself some slack. This is the only way to make the next day better!