Motivation can be one of the most difficult things to master. At times we fall into a slump at work or in life and digging ourselves out can be harder than we ever imagined.
Sometimes losing motivation can be as simple as becoming complacent while going through the same motions day after day. This can lead to a lack of self-worth, depression, and trouble keeping up with day-to-day responsibilities – compiling to troubles at work and at home.
So, although it goes without saying how important it is to continue to stay motivated and in tune with your own internal positive energy, motivation just isn’t always the easiest to find.
That is why I put together this foolproof list of ways to find motivation and keep up the positive energy in your day to day life. I truly stand by this list – if I could ever legally guarantee something, this would be it.
1. Surround yourself with good company
It’s undeniable that negativity breeds more negativity, as well as the old concept of iron sharpening iron. When you surround yourself with individuals who focus on the negative aspects of their lives, their attitude will inevitably seep into your mind, energy, and attitude. If you find yourself in this kind of company, make a change. Find individuals who are determined to stay positive and make a sincere effort to overcome the challenges life throws at them. It is too easy to fall into a negative attitude when those around you are egging you on.
Spend more time in the company of people who make you feel good. That’s pretty obvious. – Andrew Weil, MD
2. Continue learning
Education can be a great source of motivation. Limiting your knowledge base confines you and makes you feel as though there is no reason to move above and beyond where you currently are. Expanding your mind and continuing to learn can open up new windows of opportunity you never even dreamed of. From a new approach to an old problem, to a whole new career path, education gives you the oomph to get off your butt and start trying something new.
3. Help others
The age-old saying “helping others is another way of helping yourself” is cliché for a reason – because it is TRUE. Helping others not only benefits the people you are helping, it can also remind someone of what they are worth as an individual. Often times we forget we are important and this mindset lets motivation slip right out the window. Lending a helping hand to someone in need – whether you’re donating to a worthy cause, volunteering for a charity, or simply helping a co-worker with a difficult problem – is a sure-fire way to see exactly how much potential you have; and motivate you to see just how much further your potential can reach.
4. Get active
Getting off the couch and getting active is one of my personal favorite ways to give my motivation level a boost. A good workout gives you the rush of adrenaline you need to tackle anything (the main reason I workout in the mornings now). There is a commercial that says, “A body in motion tends to stay in motion.” I believe there truly is a connection between a body in motion and motivation. If you are getting energy from a good workout or some other physical activity, your mind will follow en suite. In other words, a body in motion not only stays in motion, it leads to a mind in motion.
5. Find inspiration all around you
I don’t mean just look for the good in others or try to find the beauty in a flower. I’m talking about literally, physically, surrounding yourself with quotes, pictures, and whatever else reminds you of your motivation and passion. Seeing these things is a daily reminder of the things you love in life and will give you a reason to keep going. Many people implement this idea in the form of a dream or mood board- by facing the things that inspire us every day, it’s easier to stay on track and remember not only the hows, but the whys, of what we do each day.
6. Post your goal
This one can be used in congruence with #5’s mood and goal boards. Think of your major goals – the ones that keep you going and make you push yourself that much harder. Now print those out and post them where you will see it every single day. It can be so easy to lose sight of the big picture with life’s everyday distractions. Make sure that you never forget.
Your belief determines your action and your action determines your results, but first you have to believe. -Mark Victor Hansen
7. Ask for help when you start sliding into a slump
Life happens. Sometimes it takes a turn for the worse. There are times when we can get back up and brush ourselves off, but sometimes it isn’t that easy, is it? When you feel like you’re sinking into a rut, reach out and ask for help. In moments like these it’s centering and important to lean on the important people in our lives- our significant other, our friends, our family, and even our bosses. Ask for a push and don’t be ashamed that you had to ask – everyone needs a little help sometimes. As a bonus, you can increase your positive energy repaying the favor (as I mentioned in #2) when those around you need a little helping hand. The cycle may sound corny, but it’s effective (and, for all of us, it’s important).
8. Think positive – lose the negativity
I will say it time and time again, negativity only breeds more negativity. Don’t let a bad day or bad experience get the best of you. Pop some positivity into your world every chance you get. For me, if I had a bad day, the best way to make me feel better is blasting my favorite songs on my drive home. If traffic is terrible and my music isn’t cutting it, I let every bad feeling go as soon as I walk in the door and am greeted by my puppy. Yes it may be the same thing every day, but if it brings a smile to your face, why not let it?
9. Take a break
Try stepping up from your desk and taking a short walk around the building. Grab a cup of coffee. Take 5 minutes to simply relax. You can go back to what you were doing completely reenergized and cleared of the mental clutter – which means you’ll be far more productive in the long run.
10. Remind yourself of your successes
Remember how great it felt? Fill yourself with those successes and this will lead to further inspiration and motivation.
Motivation is not always easy to find and sometimes you have to work to keep it around. Yet, if you try at least one of the aforementioned ideas, you will find (and maintain) a level of motivation that will bring you success and, most importantly, happiness.