Motivation doesn't come through emulating someone else's success. It comes from being truly aligned with yourself and your own values and what is true for you.
I've had a few requests to do a post on motivation, how I stay motivated with different things in life, whether that is eating healthily, working out, doing extra hobbies outside my job, and general how to stay organised. I thought it was a good idea to do it at the beginning of the year because you are probably setting your goals and resolutions for 2019.
By the end of this post, you will know why you might have been lacking motivation, how you can get it back, and how it's actually never really gone, you just need to do a few tweaks with your mindset to help you get back on track. I'm going to share how I do that with myself when I'm feeling a bit unmotivated and how I pick myself back up again and carry on.
Firstly, please remember that it is natural to have days where you don't feel motivated and just want to lie in bed all day. Allow yourself to do that. Allow those days where you just need to recharge and recuperate, and you'll feel much better the next day. So don't be hard on yourself. Don't beat up on yourself if you feel like one day you don’t feel like doing anything at all. It's completely natural. We all have emotional ups and downs. It's part of life, so don't worry about the down days.
LOOK AT YOUR WHY
So my first tip on being more motivated is looking at the ‘why’ behind your actions. Now, if you have a strong reason behind why you're doing something, then you're more likely to carry on with it. It could be with work, maybe you want to travel to a particular place, maybe you want to buy certain clothes to need a certain income to maintain that lifestyle. If you are moving towards a certain career level which requires exams etc. then looking at the why behind that is going to keep you on track to where you want to be.
Perhaps you are in a job you don't really like, but you know you're going traveling in a few months, and that keeps you motivated to go into work each day because you know there's an outcome, there's an end goal in sight. I think it really helps to have that why in the back of your mind, especially in the morning. When you wake up, have a think about what you're going to do during that day and why, whether it's picking healthy food options or going to the gym. The why is because - I'm going to be like superficial here -but if you're going on holiday and you want to feel good in your bikini, then maybe that's why you want to eat healthier that day, because you want to feel good. The ultimate outcome for any goal is because we believe we will feel good once we achieve it. So when you have the feeling good in the back of your mind, then that's what will drive you to be more motivated.
If you are about my age (26), you probably remember that studying for exams seemed so boring at the time, but you know there's an outcome, there's an end goal. You pass your exams and hopefully get into a university or school you want to. So there is a clear kind of path, a clear success route, as it were. So you need to work out what your why is in your life, and that will help you move forward towards those goals. And even when the results aren't quite as clear cut or as instant, you need to go on the feelings and how you're feeling towards these things. If you are saving up for traveling maybe, then the excitement that you feel at the thought of traveling is showing you that it's the right direction that you're going in, so it's always best to follow your feelings and they'll guide you to where you need to be.
If you've had a day where you're eating really well and you're fuelling your body full of nourishing foods, I’d be very surprised if you didn't feel good from that! So it's the feeling that you need to hold onto from that day. Don't just look in the mirror and think, "Oh, well, I look the same so there's no point in carrying on tomorrow." It's not that instant. It's a gradual thing. The goals and outcomes that you have or the reality you desire has to become more real in your mind than where you are physically. Basically ignore as much as you can of what is going on around you physically (it’s all energy anyway) and be focused on your vision.
PREVENT FEELINGS OF OVERWHELM
Now, you also might be lacking motivation in life because you are feeling a bit too overwhelmed with the things you've taken on. However it depends on your personality type. Some people are very good at not taking on too much. Other people will take on way too much themselves, and then feel like they have to prove themselves by being busy all the time and glorifying busy. To be honest I'm a recovering ‘busy’ person. Feeling overwhelmed just really means that you aren't up to speed with all your desires - according to Abraham Hicks. So stop trying to rush the universe and push things into place.
Take it slower and steadier and go by your feelings and intuition. It's kind of gauging how good something feels which takes practice. For example, maybe you're writing seven blog posts a week, and then you lowered it down to three. If that feels best to you, then carry on doing that, and continue to check in with how that amount feels. Don't worry about what other people are doing. Just go by what you feel is good for you, and then that usually works out better because you have more energy to do those things, the quality will be better etc.
When you're feeling overwhelmed, small steps each day can help you to combat those feelings, so chunking your tasks into different sections and breaking things down step by step. So if you've got a big project or a big work task that you have to do, then breaking it down into the small little points and the tiny things that you can do today to move you forward.
Something that I personally like to do in the morning and whenever I remember is to set intentions for my day. This links a bit to the why behind what you're doing, but setting intentions makes it a bit more concrete I think, rather than wishful thinking. It's kind of like saying that you're going to do something. For example mine could be, ‘I intend to have a really fun time writing this blog post. I intend to be helpful and give valuable content to my readers.’ You can also do this before you head into each part of your day, e.g. ‘I intend to be more present with this person’ or ‘I intend to get off my phone by 8:00 PM tonight.’ Having those clear messages to the universe really helps you set things in motion.
You can write your intentions down in a journal, or you can just think about them in your head. I am currently using a journal created by Jasmine Lipska, who is an Australian YouTuber that I watch quite regularly. She's really lovely, and just so happy and smiley. She created this 2019 journal of love, which has everything in it that I would like in my own journal, really. I really recommend it. It was shipped from Australia but I didn't have to pay any customs or tax or anything. I've been using this to plan my days and write my goals out, intentions for the day, and it's been really helping me stay on track so far, even though it's only the 8th of January! You can find the journal I use here.
MAKE CHOICES IN THE PRESENT
My next tip is to be more present instead of making a five year or ten year plan. Take it back to the present moment and think, "What is one step I can do right now to get me closer to where I want to be? What is one action I can take now that feels true to me, feels like aligning for me, and move in that direction?" There's only ever really now, there's no future, there's no past, technically. Time is an illusion, as Einstein says.
There's never going to be like one massive thing that propels you to where you want to be. It's the consistent little steps you take each day. In terms of motivation, for me, making sure I have one or two things that I want to achieve every day that will make me feel like I've accomplished something, even if it's something seemingly tiny like posting on Instagram. It'll make me feel like I've done my bit. Things like this will really help you to build up the momentum and stay more motivated as the days go on.
LET GO OF COMPARISON
The final thing I want to cover is that you need to let go of comparison because the longer you spend looking at other people's lives and making comparisons against yours and seeing what they're doing compared to what you're doing, takes away the time that you could be spent developing yourself and developing your life. Social media tends to draw you back in and make you feel like checking in on other people to see what they're doing. And obviously it's nice to do that with friends, but I'm really aware now when I'm not looking at my people in my peer group and I'm looking at people I don't even know. It's good to find other people and connect with them, but when it's making you feel bad, then that's when you need to take a step back from it. I’ve also massively cut down on the types of content I watch on YouTube, the people I follow on Instagram, and anything that doesn't really feel true to me anymore and how I've changed as a person. I'm very conscious of what I'm letting in my energy and what I'm letting invade my mental space.
It can be difficult to have a clear focus on what your why is when you're focused on what other people's whys are and what they're trying to achieve. A lot of people are trying to do things, especially in social media, that I'm not really trying to do, so as I'm trying to discover more who I am, it's easier to do that if you haven't got the noise from other people going on in your head. Have a declutter of your social media, have a declutter of the people in your friendship circles if you need to, and just make sure that your space is as positively focused as you can. When you don't feel like you're less than or behind in some sort of life race, then you're more likely to feel more motivated towards what you want to achieve. You don't feel like it's a waste of time because you’re already behind and having to catch up with someone else.
Even though I haven't been too specific with the topics in this post, you can apply them to different areas of your life. If you have any questions for me in the comments, let me know. Share this post with someone who is wondering how to be more motivated in 2019. You can also join me on Instagram where I am doing daily stories on topics like this. Until next time!