Lacking Motivation? Here Are A Few Ways To Begin Creating Your Own
Matt Ryan, LMSW for Bike and Brain
Motivation is an essential part to a fulfilling life. Without it, life would be dull. Motivation brings about vibrance and passion. Imagine an unmotivated football team or an unmotivated boxer. What about an unmotivated speaker? These things just wouldn’t be good. They would be brutal to watch. Motivation makes people feel alive. It’s what fuels people’s desire to keep moving forward. However, motivation is not something you can buy at the store. It’s not something innate in all people. In fact, it sometimes takes work to bring about motivation.
There are a few key ingredients that create motivation. The first one is a hope in something greater than the present. Motivation is the desire to work towards something, not to remain complacent. Furthermore, motivation requires realistic and tangible goals. Finally, confidence is required for motivation. A person must have a belief that they are capable of achieving. Motivation can not exist without these three ingredients.
Rest assured that motivation does not come naturally for everyone, but that doesn’t mean the situation is hopeless. Everyone has the ability to build motivation within themselves. Below are five ways to begin building motivation for yourself.
1. Set Realistic Goals
Motivation is the drive to work towards something. Many people go wrong because they succumb to unrealistic goals. They set themselves up for defeat. It may not be realistic to become the next Lebron James if you are a 45 year old business man.However, if you desire to play more basketball because it brings joy to your life, it would be possible to set a goal to join at least one basketball league this winter season. Through goal setting you are not only holding yourself accountable, but you are working TOWARDS something greater than the present.
2. Create An Inventory of Your Strengths
We have written about this before, but it’s essential. Most people are not starting from scratch. In fact, most people come with a plethora of strengths they may not even realize. It’s
going to be helpful to sit down and think about what your current strengths are. I would suggest devoting at least 30 minutes to a brainstorm session with a good-ole-fashioned
pencil and notebook. These strengths can then be tapped to begin working towards your goals.
3. Explore and Identify Your Passions
Devote some time to exploring what you are passionate about. Motivation often goes hand-in-hand with passion. What area of your life do you want to devote your motivation to. Do you want to become a better parent? Do you want to be better at sports? Do you want to become more social?. Passions and motivations are endless. Do not get stuck inside the stereotypical idea that motivations and passions are only for sports and athletes. There is nothing wrong with being passionate about parenting or being passionate about socializing.
People are social creatures. Almost everything we do relies on other people, whether we like it or not. Being able to create and sustain an internal motivation is a great skill. However, motivation can be exacerbated by socializing with other people that share the same passion. There is something unique about being part of a community of people that shares the same passions, hopes, and dreams. These communities can be a huge source of inspiration and motivation. Checkout different Meet Up or just do a Google search to see what communities/groups are out there.
5. Integrate Daily
Once you have started to develop goals and have become familiar with your areas of passion, it will be crucial to incorporate these into your regular routine. All too often people let their passions and goals fall by the wayside. They become caught up in work, school, family, etc. However, you can’t let this happen. What about devoting 5 minutes to simply brainstorming ideas? What about setting aside 10 minutes to read a chapter in a book related to your passion? You would be surprised how these little things can re-ignite and maintain the spark of motivation.
The ideas above are suggestions to begin developing and sustaining motivation. They can be tailored to the individual or be taken as is. At the end of the day, it’s important to understand that anyone can create motivation. Also remember that motivation should not be taken for granted nor is it something people are born with. Sometimes it takes a little motivation to create motivation.
Matt Ryan, LMSW is a licensed social worker in the state of New York.